They’re small, they’re quick, and their wings can flap as many as 90 times per second. Hummingbirds are a natural wonder, and enthusiasts long to have these small, feathered creatures dine in their back yard.

Hummingbirds are nectarivores, meaning that they feed largely on plant nectar, supplementing their diets with insects and other small invertebrates. For those who hope to build a garden appealing to hungry hummingbirds, consider a variety of plants that have high nectar content. These can include columbine, foxglove, ladybird scarlet, morning glory, hibiscus, salvia and zinnia. For best results – and best returns of hummingbirds – plant several species.

If a flower garden for hummingbirds is a little too high-maintenance, there’s always that trusty hummingbird feeder. Fill the feeders with faux nectar made by adding a cup of sugar to four cups of boiling water. Be sure to chill the nectar before adding it to the feeder. And forego the red food dye; it’s not necessary to attract the hummingbirds.

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