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Attracting Hummingbirds to Your Home

Updated on January 28, 2011

A look at hummingbirds in slow motion:

Tiny, speedy, colorful and intriquing--perfect ways to describe these little birds that are so fun to watch. Not much bigger than a big bumblebee hummingbirds hover for a minute, and then they're gone. What can we do to bring them back so we can watch them for just a bit longer?

Even if you live in an apartment, you can encourage little hummers to come and visit. The easiest way to coax hummingbirds to come is to hang a hummingbird feeder outside your window. The feeder should be filled with the sweet nectar these tiny birds enjoy. You can purchase mixture for the nectar and feeders at hardware stores, bird specialty stores,or in the lawn and garden departments at bigger retail stores.

If you choose to be more economical, you can make your own hummingbird feeder by getting a hamster's water bottle and attaching a colorful flower shape to the end of the tube where the liquid is dispersed. The water bottle will be used the same way a small animal would use it -- fill it with the nectar and hang it upside down. You can secure the feeder with a wire hanger. Hang the feeder from a deck railing, a branch, or a post stuck in the ground.

You can also make homemade nectar. Mix four parts water to one part sugar and boil the mixture for a couple minutes. Add a drop of red food coloring to the mixture. The bright color will attract the hummingbirds, and they will enjoy the sweet, syrupy taste. Keep the feeding solution fresh, so the little birds visit the feeder regularly.

If you have your own home and have a yard, you can plant certain types of flowers to attract hummingbirds. These tiny birds love bright colors, especially oranges and reds. More important than the color of the flower is the shape. Choose plants that have tubular flowers. To insure hummingbirds will visit your yard the whole season, plant both perennials and annuals. Following is a list of flowers that hummingbirds like:

Perennials (plants that are planted once and bloom each year)

Annuals (plants that must be planted each year)

If you choose to plant a garden to attract hummingbirds pick a warm, sunny, sheltered site. Also consider planting shrubs or trees with thick foliage so nesting sites and protection from bad weather will be available to the hummingbirds.

This tiny birds are very interesting to watch. With a little effort you can encourage them to come and visit you! Enjoy summer and watch the hummingbirds!


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    • Julie A. Johnson profile image

      Julie A. Johnson 7 years ago from Duluth, MN

      I use flowers only to attract hummingbirds, but I have bought hummingbird feeders as gifts. As long as the feeder is colorful and provides a sipping area that looks like a real flower, it should work fine. The secret is the part of the feeder where the bird sips from should look bell-shaped, and make sure the nectar is red and sweet. Good luck,and thanks for your comment. Julie

    • LaquandaKleno profile image

      LaquandaKleno 7 years ago

      Those are some useful tips. Is there a specific store-bought feeder you would recommend? I found this new feeder by Perky-Pet. It looks like it would be the easiest to clean and refill. What do you think?