It’s the time of year when I get hummingbird questions so I thought I would do a quick reminder about hummingbird nectar. Here is the recipe:
4 parts water
1 part table sugar (not honey, not corn syrup, not Splenda, not Stevia, no artificial sweetner)
Don’t bother with red dye, it’s not needed, could be harmful (we don’t know for certain but it’s best to err on the side of caution). Your feeder should be red enough to get the hummingbirds’ attention.
Mix until the sugar is dissolved. One thing that I do is add in a little hot water from our tea kettle to the sugar, just enough to dissolve it. Once it’s dissolved I add in cool water so the nectar won’t be too hot and can go right in the feeder. You can make a big batch and store the excess in your refrigerator for up to two weeks.
Remember to keep the nectar in the feeder fresh. If you feeder is in direct sun, change the nectar every two days. If it’s in the shade, change it every five days. If the nectar looks cloudy or if you see black on the inside of the feeder or around the feeder points–clean the feeder and change the nectar. A clean feeder is essential.
If the idea of keeping a feeder clean is daunting, use flowers to attract hummingbirds instead.