Hummingbird Flowers - The Best 18 Plant Families for Natural Nectar

This is Nature's way. Keep something in bloom continuously during the time hummingbirds are expected in your area. Native plants are a good place to start, but don't limit yourself. Much effort has gone into developing flowers that hummers love!

Hummingbird favorites usually but not always have long, tubular blossoms that are red, orange, yellow or blue, especially blue Salvia species; the shape limits insect access to the nectar inside. Hummers like blossoms with lots of concentrated nectar, preferring sucrose.

We've listed some of the best plant families for "natural nectar" below. Ask your local nurseries and garden clubs which do best in your area - their advice is invaluable!

 

Our Favorite Flowers for Attracting Hummingbirds

Photo Family Common Names Description
An asterisk (*) indicates warm climates. Our personal favorites are underlined.
Abutilon pictum Abutilon* Chinese Bell Flower
Chinese Lantern
Indian Mallow
Flowering Maple
Approximately 150 species of broadleaf plants in the mallow family.
Agastache rupestris Agastache* Cusick's Giant Hyssop
Hummingbird Mint 
Threadleaf Hyssop 
A genus of 9–12 species of aromatic flowering herbaceous perennial plants in the Lamiaceae family.
Aloe aristata Aloe* Aloe Vera A genus containing about 500 species of flowering succulent plants.
Anisacanthus quadrifidus Anisacanthus* Desert Honeysuckle
Flame Anisacanthus 
A genus of flowering plants in the bear's breeches family native to tropical and subtropical regions of the Americas.
Columbine cultivar Aquilegia Sierra Columbine
Crimson Columbine
Fragrant Columbine 
A genus of about 60-70 species of perennial plants that are found in meadows, woodlands and higher altitudes throughout the Northern Hemisphere.
Caesalpinia pulcherrima Caesalpinia* Bird of Paradise
Broadpad Nicker
Yellow Peacock
 
A genus of flowering plants in the legume family with different publications including anywhere from 70 to 165 species.
Red Bottlebrush Callistemon*

Crimson Bottlebrush
Weeping Bottlebrush
Red Bottlebrush 

A genus of 34 species of shrubs in the family Myrtaceae, all of which are endemic to Australia.
Chilopsis linearis Chilopsis Desert Willow A genus of flowering plant containing a single species, Chilopsis linearis.
Fuchsia flower Fuchsia Fuchsia A genus of flowering plants that contains almost 110 recognized species. 
Hamelia patens Hamelia Firebush A genus of flowering plants in the coffee family.
Justicia carnea Justicia Water Willow
Shrimp Plant 
A genus of flowering plants native to tropical and warm temperate regions of the Americas, with two species occurring north into temperate zones.
Kniphofia Kniphofia

Red Hot Poker
Torch Lily
Knofflers 

A genus of flowering plants that includes 70 or more species native to Africa.
Lobelia laxiflora Lobelia Indian Tobacco
Fool's Bane
Vomitwort 
A genus of flowering plants comprising 360–400 species, with distribution primarily in tropical to warm temperate regions of the world and a few species extending into cooler temperate regions.
Lonicera hispidula Lonicera Honeysuckle There are about 180 species of honeysuckle, 100 of which occur in China; Europe, India and North America, with about 20 native species each.
Monarda Monarda Bee Balm
Oswego Tea
Bergamot 
A genus of roughly 16 species of flowering plants endemic to North America.
Penstemon palmeri Penstemon* Beard-Tongue A large genus of North American and East Asian flowering plants with partly tube-shaped, and two-lipped flowers.
Salvia pratensis Salvia* Sage The largest genus of plants in the mint family with approximately 700–900 species of shrubs, herbaceous perennials, and annuals.
Tecoma stans Tecoma / 
Tecomaria 
Yellow Trumpetbush A genus of 14 species of shrubs or small trees in the trumpet vine family. Twelve species are from the Americas, while the other two species are African.

 











Photo: Wally Nussbaumer

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