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Hummingbirds can’t resist this little firecracker

Pollinator Plant List: Uruguayan firecracker plant offers hummingbirds nectar from July through October.
Pollinator Plant List: Uruguayan firecracker plant offers hummingbirds nectar from July through October.

This is one part in a series featuring the UC Davis Arboretum’s “Pollinator Plant List: Hummingbirds” series – 30 can’t-fail, easy-care, low-water plants well adapted to our region and that attract hummingbirds.

Uruguayan firecracker plant

Dicliptera suberecta

Size: Two feet tall and wide.

Bloom season: Orange flowers July through October.

Exposure: Full sun to partial shade.

Pruning needs: Cut back in late February to remove cold damaged growth after danger of frost is past. In fall, remove spent flower stalks if desired.

Water needs: Medium; once established, water deeply once a week.

Snapshot: This little firecracker is a hummingbird magnet. Native to South America, this heat- and drought-tolerant perennial is a beautiful summer bloomer, featuring many clusters of tubular orange flowers from July through fall. The velvety blue-gray foliage is attractive, too, adding texture as well as color. This tender perennial tends to die back in winter, but grows back quickly in spring with a neat, mounding form. Another plus: Although it may lose its foliage, firecracker plant is reportedly cold hardy down to 0 degrees F.

For more on “Pollinator Plant List: Hummingbirds,” click on arboretum.ucdavis.edu.

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