Flowers for Bees, Butterflies and Hummingbirds by Denise Devine

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Some of the flowers in my garden

As you probably know, bee and butterfly populations are in serious decline. This is not good news! Did you know that in 1997 there were more than 1 billion Monarch butterflies, but now there are only about 57 million? The rapid decline is due to pesticides, loss of habitat and milkweed, which is the main diet of caterpillars.

Bees are dying in record numbers—putting our food supply seriously at risk—and it’s mostly due to toxic pesticides called “neonicotinoids.” These nasty chemicals are used in nursery plants and they’re systemic, which means that the poison goes up through the plant into the pollen and nectar and kills the bees. PLEASE, only buy plants that aren’t chemically treated!

Make your yard an area where bees and butterflies can survive. Plant wildflowers native to your state, plant milkweed and don’t use chemicals!

A Monarch resting on pink Swamp Milkweed

A Monarch resting on pink Swamp Milkweed

Some bee-friendly flowers…

Spring Blooms – Crocus, hyacinth, borage, calendula and wild lilac

Summer – bee balm, cosmos, echinacea, snapdragons foxglove, and hosta

Fall – zinnias, sedum, asters, witch hazel and goldenrod

Some butterfly-friendly flowers…

Aster, bee balm, cornflower, daylily, hollyhock, lavender, lilac, milkweed, phlox, purple coneflower, snapdragon, zinnia

Ten top flowers for hummingbirds…

Bee balm, cardinal flower, zinnia, salvia, bleeding hearts, butterfly bush, trumpet flower, lupine, columbine, petunia

8.31.15bThe picture to the left is a cardinal flower. The hummingbirds in my yard are all over this flower and it grows really tall. It’s very beautiful, too!

All of the pictures in this post are from my own backyard. If you’d like more information on how you can do your part to help save the bees and butterflies by creating a friendly habitat for them, here are a few very good resources:

American Meadows for wildflower seeds

The Xerxes Society for information on bees, butterflies and dragonflies

The Honeybee Conservancy for information on planting a bee-friendly garden

 


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About Denise Devine

Denise Devine is a USA TODAY bestselling author who writes sweet romantic comedy and inspirational romance. She is currently writing two series, Forever Yours (Inspirational) and Counting Your Blessings (Christmas romantic comedy). You can visit her at www.deniseannettedevine.com.

4 Replies to “Flowers for Bees, Butterflies and Hummingbirds by Denise Devine”

  1. I’m so glad you wrote this post, Denise. Many people aren’t aware of – or don’t pay attention to – the threat we’ve created for our insect life in our modern world full of pesticides and chemically treated plants. We need more people making noise so others will listen and do something to stop this from continuing. 🙂

  2. I shared with the page for the community garden I work with as a Master Gardener. The garden is now one year old and we’re adding a fly through for the bees and butterflies.

  3. I see this condition readily because of the differences in the yards of our houses. The townhouse in Houston where the yard is manicured and groomed, courtesy of our POA, I rarely see monarchs but still see a few honeybees.

    At our house in the country, I can sit in the front courtyard and watch the hummingbirds and honeybees zipping between the lantana and the Silverado Sage. The monarchs descend en masse later in the year and crowd around the lantana too.

    I’d have more blooming plants, but the deer tend to eat the flowers–even the day lilies before the green pods open and the flower bursts forth.

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