Interested in attracting awesome pollinators like Bumblebees, Hummingbirds, and Metallic Sweat Bees to your property? If so, you’ll want to make sure you incorporate some of these pollinators’ favorite plants into your landscaping.
Florida native plants and Florida-friendly plants are the best places to start when considering which plants to add to your property. Native plants are basically plants that have a long history of being a part of the functioning ecosystems here in Florida. For example, American Beautyberry, Swamp Milkweed, Yaupon Hollys, Spotted Bee Balm, Tropical Sage, Wood Sage, Wild Coffee, and Blue Porterweed (native variety) are a few Florida native plants. Florida-friendly plants are plants that aren’t necessarily native, but they function well in Florida and don’t typically negatively impact the native flora and fauna they are planted around.
When planted in the right place, Florida-friendly plants can be great, low-maintenance additions to yards that will enhance aesthetics and biodiversity. Some examples of Florida-friendly plants are Bottlebrush trees, Loquats, Azaleas, some tropical Salvias, etc.
My Personal Recommendations
There’s a large selection of Florida native and Florida-friendly plants to choose from. From my experience thus far on my own property, native pollinators have really been enjoying:
- Scrub Blueberries – (native), Bumblebees love them.
- Wood Sage – (native), Bumblebees and Ruby-Throated Hummingbirds love them.
- Wild Coffee– (native), Metallic Sweat Bees love them. It’s honestly a pollinator haven.
- Bottlebrush – (Florida-friendly), Ruby-throated Hummingbirds can’t get enough.
- Tropical salvias – (Florida-friendly), Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, Bumbleebees, and Carpenter Bees love them.
There is such a wide variety of native pollinators on our property. Bees, Wasps, Butterflies, Hummingbirds, and everything in between love to check out what’s in bloom. From my observations thus far, our Wild Coffee plants seems to host the most diverse group of pollinators. The Bumble bees and Hummingbirds are feeding from the plants on our property on a daily basis. (The Hummingbirds in particular are around almost constantly.)
We also have Pollinator “hotels”, which are pretty popular spots for various pollinators to rest and nest.
When Shopping for Plants
Some things to keep in mind when you are picking out plants at big box stores or local nurseries:
- Local nurseries are more likely to have a larger selection of native plants than big box stores will.
- At times, some stores and nurseries will label species of plants as “native” when they are actually not native or are a hybrid version of the native.
- I recommend getting an idea of what plants you want to add to your property before going to the store/nursery so you know what to check for when looking for a native plant. It can help to know and ID the plant by its Scientific Name. For example, American Beautyberry is Callicarpa Americana. However, it’s possible a plant could still be mislabeled at a store/nursery. This happens a lot with different varieties of Firebush and Porterweed.
Get in Touch
Are you going to add any of these plants to your property? If so, let me know which ones and what pollinators you start to see around your house! I saw my first Hummingbird on our property within a week of planting some Salvias! Feel free to comment below or email me at email@example.com.
Learn More About Florida-friendly Plants
If you would like to learn more about Florida-friendly plants, I recommend checking out the Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ Program by UF/IFAS.