Flowering Shrubs That Attract Wildlife

Posted by Joe Mouad on Jan 14, 2010 1:36:03 PM

The key to a successful and beautiful landscape is to achieve the perfect balance between form and function. Beyond adding beauty and value to the home, a well-designed landscape can increase energy efficiency in the home, provide greater privacy and can even help to protect the home from intrusion. Shrubs and hedges are especially well suited to adding privacy and security to any home in Florida.

Using ornamental hedges provide an even greater benefit. Besides just discouraging would be intruders, flowering shrubs can provide the nature lover with an exceptional opportunity to encourage and interact with local fauna. There are a number of shrubs that are particularly well suited to providing both protection and a source of nourishment for the wildlife of your local environment.

Flowering Quince Bushes

Flowering shrubs can be more successful at attracting butterflies and birds than even ornamental trees can. Flowering quince bushes are a clear example of this fact. The cameo variety of flowering quince are truly exceptional in their ability to provide beauty and functionality. The cameo is low lying with a wide spread which makes it perfect for creating ornamental hedges, either for privacy hedges in Orlando or around windows for increased security.

The flowers of the cameo quince are usually of a light peach color and are a natural attractant to a wide number of insects. The berries produced by the flowers are a favorite among birds. The berries of the cameo are also edible by humans and are often used in preserves and jellies. This makes the cameo an ideal selection for those who wish to benefit from their landscape in more ways than just increase home value and visual appeal.

Sunrise Forsythia

For privacy hedges larger than those that can be created with flowering quince bushes, the sunrise forsythia is an outstanding selection. This shrub can reach heights of 6' and provides a spread almost as wide, generally in the range of 3' to 5'. This make the sunrise forsythia perfect for larger privacy hedges around the border of a property. The flowers of the sunrise forsythia are bright yellow and are an attractant to butterflies and other insect life.

Variegated Weigela

The variegated weigla provides a shorter privacy hedge and is more suitable for adding protection and security around windows. The variegated weigela reaches a maximum height of about 4 feet. The foliage of the weigela alone makes it an attractive selection. The weigela puts out leaves that are deep green in the center and feature a white border. The flowers of the weigela are a soft pink.

Tor Spirea

The tor spirea are also well suited for hedges below ground floor windows. The tor spirea will only reach a maximum height of about 3' and provides a spread of about 3' as well. Like the weigela, the spirea has exceptional foliage that make it a beauty throughout the year. Its leaves are a deep, rich green in summer that turn to a brilliant red in autumn. The tor spirea produces small clusters of tiny white flowers that are a favorite of many insects.

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This is Central Florida, land of palm trees.

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Some varieties, like Royal, Traveler's, or Coconut palms will likely die here in Central Florida if we get a bad frost or freeze.

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