Natural nectar and floral shape, along with color, help lure hummingbirds to these plants, four of The Hummingbird Society's 18 backyard favorites. Clockwise from top left: Penstemon (beard-tongue), Lobelia, Lonicera (honeysuckle) and Agastache (threadleaf hyssop). 

The Sedona, Arizona-based Hummingbird Society publishes a list of the 18 best plant families to lure hummingbirds. We’ve included examples of each, and bolded their four absolute favorites, also pictured above:

  • Abutilon (the mallow family; Chinese lantern).
  • Agastache (threadleaf hyssop).
  • Aloe (aloe vera).
  • Anisacanthus (desert honeysuckle).
  • Aquilegia (columbine).
  • Caesalpinia (bird of paradise).
  • Callistemon (crimson bottlebrush).
  • Chilopsis (desert willow).
  • Fuschia (fuschia).
  • Hamelia (firebrush).
  • Justicia (water willow).
  • Kniphofia (red-hot poker).
  • Lobelia (fool’s bane).
  • Lonicera (honeysuckle: look for a noninvasive native, such as coral honeysuckle sempervirens).
  • Monarda (bee balm).
  • Penstemon (beard-tongue).
  • Salvia (sage).
  • Tecoma/Tecomaria (yellow trumpetbush).