Beyond the Birdfeeder

Wisconsin’s Best Native Plants for Attracting Birds provides excellent information listing the trees, shrubs and flowers to attract birds to your yard in Wisconsin and the northern Midwest area.

Native Plants: Beyond the birdfeeder. Gardening for birds and other wildlife.   Read Mariette Nowak’s great series of informative articles related to the ways you can help birds and other wildlife by gardening with native plants.

Serviceberry (pdf) Birds descend in droves to feed on ripening serviceberries, one of the first fruits of early summer.

Silphiums (pdf) In addition to food, the dense foliage of silphiums provides protection for birds from predators and harsh weather.

Dogwood Trees (pdf) The berries of the beautiful dogwood tree are high in fat, and are especially valuable for migrating birds.

Hawthorns (pdf) The hawthorn’s copious spring blossoms draw pollinating insects, which bring in the birds. Even the thorns are helpful to birds, such as shrikes.

Pines (pdf) The good-looking pines rank above every other conifer in their value as  food plants for birds and other wildlife.

Pussy Willow (pdf) One of the heralds of spring, the pussy willow provides food for a variety of birds, and also provides great nesting spots, while many other animals feast on the twigs and foliage.

Wild Columbine (pdf) The beautiful flowers of the wild columbine do more than just look good. The red-color columbines have especially rich nectar, which really brings in the hummingbirds.

Mulberry Tree (pdf) Want to attract fruit-eating birds to your property? More than 50 species of birds are known to feed on mulberries, and over 30 species of birds count mulberries as their favorite food.

Mariette has created a brochure for the Wisconsin Society of Ornithology, Inc. entitled “Beyond the Bird Feeder: Creating a Bird-Friendly Yard with Native Wisconsin Plants”  Beyond Bird Feeder Booklet Part 1   Beyond Bird Feeder Booklet Part 2 . This information is also appropriate for Northern Midwest area.


Author Mariette Nowak’s book Birdscaping in the Midwest – A Guide to Gardening with Native Plants to Attract Birds can be purchased through the Wild Store.