Top 10 Pollinator-Friendly Plants to Attract Bees and Butterflies

If you are not seeing many bees and butterflies in your garden the reason may be that you are not growing enough of the plants that attract these insects. We all know how important pollination is for flowers, vegetables and fruit trees so anything we can do to encourage the bees and butterflies to visit will benefit both our own garden and the surrounding area. This article by Anne Balogh which I found on the Garden Design Magazine website describes ten of these pollinator-friendly plants.

When selecting plants for your pollinator patch, skip imported, hybrid, and double-flowered varieties and choose native flowering plants instead, especially those adapted to your local climate and soil conditions. These 10 pollinator-friendly plants, all native to North America, attract both bees and butterflies as well as other beneficial insects.
ANISE HYSSOP (Agastache foenicutum)
Photo by: Mirjam Cornelissen /
Zone: 4-8
Height: 2 to 4 feet
Bloom time: June to September
Flower color: Lavenderto purple
This culinary herb. often grown for its anise-and-mint scented foliage. satis?es the sugar craving of a variety of pollinators. Honeybees, in particular, love
feeding on the super-sweet nectar of hyssop’s densely packed ?owers. making it a favorite honey plant for beekeepers. As a bonus. the aromatic leaves can be used to make herbal teas and potpourris
ASTER (Symphyotrlchum spp.)
Photo by: Cousin_AVI /
Zone: 3-10
Height: 1 to 4 feet
Bloom time: August through October
Flower color: Purple. violet-blue. pink. white
Asters are an important late-season food source of pollen and nectar for native bees. ln some areas of the country they may also help sustain monarch
butter?ies during their fall migration. Asters come in many cli?erent cultivars,? but native varieties, such as New England aster (Symphyofrichum novae-angliae) and smooth blue aster (S. leave), are the best choices for a pollinator patch.
WILD BERGAMONT (Monarda ?stulosa)
Photo by: Sharon Day /
Zone: 3-9
Height: 2 to 4 feet
Bloom time: June to September
Flower color: Lavender, pink. white
What list of pollinator-friendly perennials would be complete without beebalm? This pollinator superstar has pompom like clusters of tubular flowers that are
irresistible to native bees and bumblebees. It also has been identi?ed as a valuable nectar plant for monarchs. according to The Xerces Society. which
offers monarch nectar plant guides for various regions.

See more at Garden Design Magazine
Feature photo: KARI K /