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Setting up a wildlife garden

Plants for butterflies

Plants for bees

Plants for hummingbirds

Plants for birds

Plant map

 

 

 

 

 

Phlox sp.
phlox

Zone: 3 to 8

Soil: sand to clay

Light: Part sun to light shade

Bloom colour: White, pink blue

Bloom period: July to September

Height: a lot of variation

Moisture: Dry to medium

Attracts: Hummingbirds, butterflies and moths

Notes:Phlox paniculata is the most common species found in nurseries along with phlox subulata. The former, while common in gardens is not native to Ontario. Phlox divaricata, the woodland phlox, is native to Ontario and a large part of central and Eastern United States. The long corolla in Phlox paniculata excludes most insects because their tongues are too short and so this species has a limited wildlife value. Carpenter bees are common on Phlox because the can rob the flowers of its nectar by cutting a small slit in the base of the corolla close to the nectary. The flower shape is typical of plants pollinated by hummingbirds and insects with long tongues. Both monarch butterflies and sphinx moths drink from this plant.

The plant can tolerate full sun, but it grows and looks better where there is a decent amount of shade. It can tolerate clay, but probably does better in a sandy soil. If the conditions are not right, then these plants are susceptible to powdery mildew. David is a cultivar that is quite mildew resistant. It grows up to 5ft high whereas some of the smaller cultivars are less than 1 foot tall. To attract hummingbirds, you will have more success with a pink or purple cultivar.Choose a cultivar that is very close to the species. The fancier ones may not be such a good nectar source. Species native to Ontario include Phlox divaricata, Phlox maculata, Phlox pilosa and Phlox subulata.

Woodland phlox has quite different cultivation requirements.This native plant is less than 2 feet tall and needs a rich moist soil in part shade. It flowers in late spring and is a great plant for a woodland garden or in containers.

Phlox paniculata
Phlox 'David'
Phlox paniculata 'David'
Phlox maculatum
Phlox paniculata
Phlox with clearwing

Phlox with clearwing

Phlox with carpenter bee Phlox divaricata
Phlox paniculata with a carpenter bee
Woodland Phlox