Gardening for the birds

Local extension talks about plantings, feeder maintenance for hummingbirds

LaGRANGE – As almost double the lecture’s usual crowd filled the conference room at the LaGrange Library, Troup County Master Gardner Extension Volunteer Charlotte Lamb began to outline what steps locals can take to encourage hummingbirds in their yards.

Lamb listed a variety of easy to implement ideas like planting flowers that hummingbirds are known to love – like bee balm, native honeysuckle and summer blue stage – and providing hummingbird feeders for times when flowers are sparse. She also highlighted the importance of cleaning out feeders from top to bottom every three to four days.

Some of her tips were slightly less obvious though, like providing a bird bath that was shallow enough for hummingbirds, avoiding pesticides on pollinator plants and making sure that nesting materials are readily available for the tiny birds who like to use moss, lichen and spider webs to construct their nests.

Lamb also pointed out some of the benefits of having hummingbirds which included their insect eating diet and the joy that many people derive from watching the birds.

The Troup County Master Gardner’s next Lunch & Learn Horticulture Series lecture is expected to be on Container Gardens. The lecture is scheduled to take place on May 17 at 12 p.m. at the LaGrange Memorial Library at 115 Alford Street.