October Flowers

October 2, 2017 by Rita Welch

From north to south, what flowers are blooming in October? Hummingbirds depend on finding flowers all along their migration route.

“I observed at least 2 hummingbirds on the lantana between September 25th and 29th,” wrote Dawn Kyle from Schulenburg, Texas.

Winding Down

Migration starts winding down in October. Hummingbirds must find a steady supply of food to fuel their flight all along the way. If they have favorable weather and plentiful food sources, they may stay in an area for a few days before moving southward. 

Report Nectaring on Flowers

Which nectar-rich plants are blooming now and which ones are fading fast?  Here are some highlights from this week’s reports that reveal where natural food sources are still available for migrating hummingbirds:

“A hummingbird visited a dozen or more Lathyrus tingitanus flowers, a tithonia, a lantana, and a raspberry, though I think it may have been going for bugs on the raspberry,” wrote Mary from Minneapolis, Minnesota on September 25th.

“We have several juveniles and females nectaring at feeders and flowers. Glad we have lots of flowers. They seem to prefer the Cypress and cardinal vines, but are also loving the zinnas and agastache,” wrote Cheryl from Hutchinson, Kansas on September 26th.

“Three females or juveniles were fighting over the blue-black salvia and the new Wendy’s Wish salvia. They started fighting at 7:45 am and they were still at it at 6:00 pm,” wrote Cheryl from Zionsville, Indiana on September 28th.

Predict Arrival in Costa Rica

As temperatures drop, flowers fade, and north winds push migrants southward, predict when the first ruby-throated hummingbirds will arrive in Costa Rica. Last year, the first male was sighted on October 11th, earlier than the average arrival date of October 21st. 

Fall Nectar Sources