I admit that I haven't been filling the hummingbird feeder recently. I know it's completely dry, as it's probably been at least three weeks since I've touched it... probably more like 4 or 5. Since the hummingbirds are just about to leave for Mexico, or have already done so, it's critical that my garden provide them with fuel.
Luckily there are plenty of plants for them to fight over right now -- the feeder is not the only place they can sip nectar. The cannas -- plain green form with the bright red blooms -- are a big hit with them right now. I have three separate plantings whose fiery flowers are towering above everything -- easy for hummers to find!
I also have Salvia leucantha (Mexican bush sage) that is just starting to flower:
This plant is sold as an annual herb in 4" pots here, and even if you buy one that is currently in flower in the spring you won't see more blooms until very late in the season -- sometimes after the hummers have already left the area.
There's cypress vine (Ipomoea quamoclit) too:
This reseeds for me every year, and somehow always finds its way into the bamboo at the edge of the veggie beds (now derelict but soon to be rehabbed). I love seeing those red stars in the distance! They're not overpowering, but add just enough color to all of the foliage back there.
There's also Cardinal Climber (Ipomoea x sloteri), which I grow on the deck stairs railing:
It takes a long time to start blooming, but like cypress vine does not disappoint. Love the foliage on this one too (something a hummingbird has never said I'm sure).
So there's plenty for the hummers to eat when they visit my garden. I will get the feeder cleaned and refilled though as migrating birds need plenty of fuel -- it's hanging just out of sight above the red-leaved coleus in this shot...
...which I wanted to include just to show off how pretty the deck looks this year. It took me several years but I think I've finally got the right mix of pots and other accents. Next year should be even better!