Hummingbirds like plants that bloom abundantly and that store nectar. While they will drink from any color of blossom, they are the most drawn to red flowers, regardless of plant type. A variety of plant types attract hummingbirds, from annual flowers to shrubs. California has a particularly rich selection of such plants.
January - March
There are several plants that bloom during the early season of the year. Currants and gooseberries are two of the native California plants that grow during this time period. Currants bloom with yellow flowers and berries that grow yellow but turn a dark purple to black tone, while the gooseberry blooms with white and red flowers and a red fruit that turns almost black and flowers. Both species change to bright colored foliage each fall.
Gooseberries and currants require little attention once established and attract a variety of birds, including hummingbirds. Other native plants that bloom in the early part of the year and attract hummingbirds include the yellow bush snapdragon, monkey flowers and even cacti.
June - August
Numerous native California flowers attract hummingbirds throughout the summer months. Many varieties of penstemon, especially the Scarlet bugler, lilies and lobelia, are popular with hummingbirds, as are red thistle, honeysuckle and summer holly. Sages are a major attractor of hummingbirds, especially salvia spathacea, a sage that blossoms with pink flowers and is known as the hummingbird sage. Snapdragons and monkey flowers will also survive through the summer months and continue to attract hummingbirds.
September - December
One late-in-the-year bloomer that is known to attract hummingbirds is California fuchsia. California fuchsia begins blooming with pink, red or white flowers in the middle of the summer and will bloom again and again until the end of December, attracting hummingbirds for nearly 6 months out of each year. Like other flowering plants, the red variety will attract more hummingbirds than the pink or white. Some summer-blooming flowers will live through the early part of this season as well.