Pollinator Plants

by: Christina Timm

Perennials for Attracting Bees, Butterflies, and Hummingbirds

Maltese Cross

Exposure: Full Sun

Bloom Time: Early to midsummer

Zone: 3-9

The Maltese Cross provides beautiful, vibrant flower heads that work well in a perennial garden or great for fresh cut flowers. The Maltese Cross is deer and rabbit resistant making it a great plant in open areas.  This plant also attracts bees and butterflies with its scarlet flower heads.

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Stonecrop Sedum telephium ‘Double Martini’

Exposure: Full Sun

Bloom Time: Late Summer

Zone: 3-9

 The Stonecrop Sedum provides dark red stems and pick flower heads that contrast nice against the olive-green foliage. The Double Martini Sedum is drought resistant and loves the hot sun. This plant also attracts numerous bumble bees that are fun to watch.

Sedum

Gateway Joe-Pye Weed

Exposure: Full Sun

Bloom Time: Mid to Late summer

Zone: 3-8

The Gateway Joe-Pye Weed offers large rose-red flower heads on top of tall wine-colored stems and full green foliage. It can provide vertical interest to your garden achieving 3 feet tall. When it blooms during the summer you will enjoy bees and monarch butterflies bouncing from flower head to flower head.

Joe-Pye+Weed

Butterfly Bush ‘Nanho Blue’

Exposure: Full Sun

Bloom Time: Summer

Zone: 5-9

The Butterfly Bush offers long clusters of blue flowers with gray foliage. Place in the back of a perennial garden to create a mound of color 5-6 feet tall. True to its name this plant offers food that will attract butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds with its fragrant flower heads. This plant is also deer resistant.

Mature

Mature

In Store butterfly Bush

In Store butterfly Bush


Orange Butterfly Flower

Exposure: Sun or Part Sun

Bloom Time: Summer

Zone: 3-8

The Orange Butterfly flower is native to MN and offers bright orange clusters of flowers against bright, green sturdy foliage. It provides food for monarch butterflies and acts as a host plant. Place this plant in the middle of a perennial garden or use as a border plant. This plant is also deer resistant.

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Threadleaf Coreopsis ‘Zagreb’

Exposure: Full Sun

Bloom Time: Summer

Zone: 4-9

The Threadleaf Coreopsis offers tiny golden star-shaped flowers creating a mass of color throughout the summer. With its daisy-like flowers they attract butterflies and bees. Place this plant along the edge of a garden bed or in an area to accent a space. They are also great flowers for fresh cuts and are resistant to deer.

coreopsis

Tickseed Coreopsis ‘Baby Sun"‘

Exposure: Full Sun

Bloom Time: Summer

Zone: 3-8

The Tickseed Coreopsis offers bright, cheerful yellow flowers with red centers that are excellent for cutting much like the Threadleaf Coreopsis. Place this plant along a border or edge to see all the attraction of butterflies and bees. This plant is also deer resistant.

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Yarrow Achillea ‘Red Velvet’

Exposure: Full Sun

Bloom Time: Summer

Zone: 4-9

The Red Velvet Yarrow offers tiny red flowers clustered into masses of colorful flower heads. Its foliage contrasts well with its flowers providing deep green, ferny foliage creating a drought-resistant plant. Perfect for mass plantings or creating a border for fresh cut flowers. This plant attracts the butterflies and is deer resistant.

yarrow

Bugleweed Ajuga ‘Metallica Crispa’

Exposure: Sun or Shade

Bloom Time: Spring

Zone: 4-8

The Bugleweed Ajuga offers a deep bronze foliage color perfect to accent the edge of any garden in the sun or shade. This fast-growing plant offer shoots of blue flowers that stand out from the foliage. Excellent ground cover for attracting bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds. This plant is also deer resistant.

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Blazing Star Liatris spicata ‘Kobold’

Exposure: Sun to Part Sun

Bloom Time: Summer

Zone: 3-9

The Blazing Star Liatris offers feather-like bright green foliage providing shoots of purple flowers during the summer. These flower heads have the unusual habit of opening from top to bottom. This plant attracts the bees and butterflies with its attractive blooms.

Liatris

Blazing Star Liatris spicata ‘Floristan White’

Exposure: Full Sun

Bloom Time: Summer

Zone: 3-9

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Black-Eyed Susan Rudbeckia ‘American Gold Rush’

Exposure: Sun to Part Sun

Bloom Time: Summer to autumn

Zone: 4-9

The Black-Eyed Susan Rudbeckia offers bright yellow, daisy-like flowers with dark centers. This plant continues to bloom throughout the summer attracting bees and butterflies. Perfect for adding height to any perennial garden looking to add mass color to one area. The fuzzy foliage provides excellent resistance to fungus and is also dear resistant.

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Looking for more bee attraction?

Other Bee loving plants: Bee balm, Echinacea, Hydrangeas, Gaillardia, and Allium.