Birds & Blooms June/July 2021

Birds & Blooms is the #1 bird and garden magazine in North America with more than 1 million subscribers. We pride ourselves in celebrating the “beauty in your own backyard” with a mix of expert advice and personal stories from our family of readers. Our magazine covers a wide range of topics such as attracting hummingbirds, building birdhouses, gardening for butterflies, feeding birds for less, growing veggies, tales of readers’ birding experiences, plus a whole lot more.

United States
Trusted Media Brands Inc.
3,52 €(IVA inc.)
10,58 €(IVA inc.)
6 Números

en aquest número

2 min.
hummingbird time

Several months ago I wrote the foreword for The Hummingbird Handbook, a book we partnered with author John Shewey and Timber Press to bring you. To prepare, I reflected on the thousands of amazing snapshots and stories that have crossed my desk over the years—epic hummingbird happenings from elated bird-watchers across the country. It has never been more clear to me that these fast-flying little gems elicit more emotion, joy and excitement than other birds. The Hummingbird Handbook is truly a complete guide to everything you’ve wanted to know about these beloved fliers. Get a short snippet of the book in “Hummingbird Hot Topics” on page 40. Also in this issue, indulge in 14 awe-inspring photos taken by backyard bird-watchers like you in “Hummingbird Tales” on page 24. To capture beautiful photos like…

1 min.
larger than life

Blue Jay Columbine Aquilegia ‘Blue Jay’, Zones 3 to 9 Part of the Songbird series, these flowers are gigantic, spanning nearly 3 inches wide. Blue Jay offers violet-blue and snowy white petals with flamboyant yellow accents. It does best in well-draining soil and may resist rabbits and deer. Attracts: Light needs: Full sun to part shade. Size: 2¹/₂ feet tall and nearly as wide. Grown for: Containers, cottage plantings or shade gardens. Foliage: Dark green. Cultivars to try: Other blooms from the series, such as pink and red Cardinal or yellow Goldfinch columbine, offer similar benefits. WILDLIFE BENEFITS Watch for hummingbirds to buzz by these huge blooms. Butterflies, bees and other pollinators might stop to sip the nectar, too.…

2 min.
backyard sweet shop

Hummingbirds, with their flashing feathers and mesmerizing wings, never fail to catch the eye and lift the spirit. Fortunately, it’s easy to draw these flying gems to your garden with fuel-providing feeders and native plants. Anusha Shankar, a postdoctoral fellow conducting research at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, explains why these magnificent birds are always on the hunt. She says, “Hummingbirds need to eat constantly because they use up energy very quickly. If we had their metabolic rate, we’d need to eat 300 hamburgers a day to survive!” Nectar feeders are a popular choice for attracting these fliers. Put feeders out a few weeks before hummingbirds are expected in spring, and leave them up until the birds head south again in the fall. In areas where hummers are year-round residents, you can…

1 min.
the feed

Sugar-water recipe Fill feeders with this easy, expert-approved formula. 1. Combine 4 parts hot water to 1 part refined white sugar. Consider using boiling water if you have poor water quality or are storing it for later. 2. Mix until the sugar is completely dissolved. 3. Set aside to cool. Once it’s room temperature, pour it into a feeder or store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. WHAT TO SKIP Leave these ingredients out of homemade sugar water: Brown sugar Honey Powdered sugar Artificial sweeteners Red dye…

4 min.
in the shadows

1 Cardinal flower LOBELIA CARDINALIS ZONES 3 TO 9 The blooms of this North American native have five petals that come together to form a tube. The shape baffles some insects, so the cardinal flower relies on hummingbirds for pollination. Give this plant the consistent moisture it enjoys in its natural habitats: swamps, streambanks and other damp, semi-shaded areas. Why we love it: Blooms in the richest shade of scarlet prove you can have vivid color even in the shadiest corners of a landscape. 2 Bleeding heart LAMPROCAPNOS SPECTABILIS ZONES 3 TO 9 Send a special valentine to the hummingbirds with these heart-shaped flowers. They are a classic companion to ferns and hostas in a shade garden, and they thrive in the same cool, moist conditions. Blooms and leaves fade by summer, so cut bleeding heart…

2 min.
water works

Every garden needs water to thrive—especially if the garden is container-based. When you’re dealing with a smaller amount of soil, watering is vital for plants to look their best. Don’t overdo it, though. “Proper drainage is just as important as the amount of water added to the container,” says Andrew Holsinger, University of Illinois Extension horticulture educator. Follow these tips to give your pot exactly the splash it needs. BE MINDFUL OF SOIL TYPE Skip the garden soil in containers because it won’t drain properly. Look for potting mixes that include vermiculite or perlite to help with drainage. Also, remember soil is food. A good balance of compost and occasional fertilizer will provide the nutrients plants need. THINK BIG PICTURE Choose a container based on which plants you want to grow. A variety of…