What shrubs to include in shrub row for birds?

suz9601April 30, 2012

I am wanting to add a row of shrubs along my back fence to help draw in birds. There are some I am considering such as Viburnums, Elderberry, holly, etc but am not sure how many or how to place them? Do you have any advice on which ones to plant and should I just plant about 5 different kinds in a row? Also I dont want shrubs that get over 6 feet or so.

Thanks for any help. Here is a photo of the area. I think the back fence is 50ft but only want to place shrubs along maybe 25-30 ft or so.

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Forgot to mention this is area is on the South side of house so will get plenty of sun

    Bookmark   April 30, 2012 at 3:15PM
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Serviceberry is a small tree that the birds adore - if you can put it in the corner where it can get bigger it will be of help. Some of the cultivars can be more shrub-like. And while birds love berries, there are also a great many birds that love insects. Oaks are one of the best trees for caterpillars (not a lot, mind you, just enough for the birds to munch on). Again, could be in the corner if size is an issue. Shrubs that act as host plants for butterflies (like oaks) feed birds even when berries are gone.

Viburnums are good but keep cross pollination in mind - you need two viburnums that bloom at the same time which are not identical (so they can't be two of the same cultivar name) to get the best fruit set. Do consider native ones for the best impact. Good fruiting hollies are the winterberry hollies which are deciduous, but they are male/female (as are all hollies) so be sure to choose at least one of each. Elderberries are nice.

Birds also are draw to areas that have cover so if you can get an evergreen or two that would help.

Here is a link that might be useful: this might be useful

    Bookmark   April 30, 2012 at 8:13PM
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Thanks for your reply Esh_ga. I appreciate it. Do you know which 2 viburnums would cross pollinate that are more compact, like 5-6 ft tall? I have done some research and know that blue muffin, cardinal candy, korean spice are all smaller but I cant find any info on which ones go together. Do you know? Thanks again.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2012 at 10:30AM
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Mike Larkin

Viburnum nudum and Viburnum nudum Brandywine - Are two of my favorites - Mulch well, they like the soil to be a little moist. But tolerate many soild types. Berries are great

The viburnum on my blog is Linden Viburnum, not sure of cultivar ( sorry lost the tag) but I bought two at the same time and I assume they were tagged the same plant and they get fantastic berry display. In fact I have birds dropping berry seeds and new plants starting and those plants are flowering and producing berries. The cedar wax wings love this as well as the mocking birds.

Here is a link that might be useful: Garden Design Ideas

    Bookmark   May 1, 2012 at 4:52PM
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