By Jennifer Gregory
Snowbirds are not the only seasonal stop over to vacation here on the coast. Our state is a member of the Central Flyway which is a migratory route from Central America up to the middle of Canada. By planting a bird-friendly landscape you can play host to a myriad of our seasonal visitors. Ideally, you should consider using native plants as they are adapted to our particular ecosystem and fall is an excellent time to utilize our native grasses and wildflowers.
For food and nesting material it’s hard to beat Muhly Grass. Muhly Grass is a native that puts on a showy display of white or soft purple feathery tufts in the later summer to early fall. The tufts turn to seeds which attract and feed birds, and the body of the plant appears as a nesting material.
Muhly grass prefers well-draining soil, full sun to light shade and can get 1 ½ to 3 feet tall and wide.
Coreopsis, Rudbeckia, and Mexican Hat offer bold colors that appeal to butterflies and bees followed by seeds for bird life. All of these wildflowers prefer full sun and are exceedingly hardy.
The plants listed above also have the advantage of being deer resistant.