A garden devoted to flowers whose seeds attract birds is a beautiful addition to any yard or patio. Native and cultivated plants can be used to attract such birds as the White-throated Sparrow, the American Goldfinch, juncos, thrashers, towhees and cardinals to name a few.
- Larkspur (annual, self-seeding)
- Cosmos (annual, self-seeding)
- Cornflower, Bachelor’s Button (annual)
- Cleome (annual, easy to grow)
- Snapdragon (annual, self-seeding)
- Purple Coneflower (perennial)]
- Four O’Clocks (annual, easy to grow)
- Celosia (annual, easy to grow)
Other flowers we recommend (some of which are incorporated into other theme gardens around our nature center) are: Sunflowers, Coreopsis (tickseed) – all varieties, Monarda (Bee Balm and Wild Bergamot), Ageratum, Asters, and Goldenrod.
The flowers we plant can be found in either seed packets or as plants at local nurseries or through mail order catalogues. Late fall, winter or early spring are wonderful times to sit down with paper and pencil to plan new gardens and redesign old ones. Remember to check plant height, color and bloom time. If your garden is to be all perennials, make sure you have early as well as late blooming varieties for color all season long. If you are planning to plant all native species, please make sure they have been propagated and not collected from the wild.
When at all possible, water should also be included into your garden plan. There are a number of different birdbaths available through garden or bird centers as well as through catalogues. Keep in mind that in winter water becomes especially critical for birds in our area. Other winter tips – don’t cut your garden down until spring. Dried flower heads are an important seed source for birds and can be very beautiful to look at. For more information and helpful gardening tips, consult a naturalist at the nature center. And visit our gardens to see how we grow!