When gardening to attract birds, try providing a combination of massed plantings and open space. Several shrubs and trees used to enhance landscapes also provide food and nesting sites for birds. Many smaller songbirds live entirely on insects and their larvae during the summer months. Inviting birds to your garden will provide natural insect control, beautiful sights, pleasing sounds and an educational experience for everyone young and old visiting your garden.
Try some of the following ideas to attract birds:
- A year round water source for drinking is a must. Purchase a heater for winter months.
- Evergreens supply winter shelter. Brush piles and old Christmas trees will also be used as shelter by many bird species.
- Year round feeders should be filled with a wild bird mix, thistle or black oil sunflower for seed eaters and suet or meal worms for meat eaters.
- Provide berry and nut producing plants, trees, and shrubs.
- Plenty of flowers and grasses that produce seed. Birds especially love natives and they require less care and watering once established. Hummingbirds also get more nectar from native plants.
- Plenty of birdhouses, nesting and roosting boxes. Nesting and roosting boxes will be used in winter by chickadees and other birds.
- If possible, leave dead trees as natural nesting sites and food sources for woodpeckers.
- Encourage insects by doing away with the insecticides/pesticides and let the birds do the work for you.