Bird watchers and tree huggers alike will be interested in today’s question: Which trees should you plant if you want to attract birds to your yard? Keep reading to get some insight into this age-old question.

Trees are better than no trees: While specific trees are much preferable to others, which we will discuss later, having any trees is much better than having none. The reason for this is that trees give birds places to perch, places to make their nests, places to get away from ground predators, places to hide, places to cool down, and much more. Trees, for most bird species, are their homes. And a neighborhood with no homes isn’t going to attract many residents. 

Go native: A study in the Washington, D.C., area, but one which applies to any locality, showed that birds need a minimum of 70% local trees to be able to nest in an area. The reason for this is that local insects need local trees for their very specific diets, and local insects in turn make up much of a bird’s diet. A tree native to Asia or Europe may be very beautiful, but for Indiana birds, they need Indiana-native trees that can provide them Indiana-native insects. 

Diversity is strength: If you only have one or two varieties of tree in your yard, the variety of birds will also likely be limited. The reason for this is that certain trees appeal more or less to certain species. If a couple birds of that species show up, that’s great, but only so many can nest there, and other species are unlikely to join them.

Height and blooming: Just like with variety in species of trees, don’t choose all trees with the same height and the same time of year that they blossom. Some birds will want to nest higher and having distance between nests can help make your yard more inviting. Also, you likely want birds to visit at various times throughout the year, so having trees that are in bloom at different times will attract more species of bird. 

Indiana trees to consider

There are over a 100 species of trees native to Indiana, and many others that have since been brought here. So, it’s difficult to pick a few as “the favorite trees of birds,” especially since different birds enjoy different trees. But if you want to see the wide variety of trees available in our area, please visit this detailed guide on native Indiana trees and which to plant, by Purdue University Cooperative Extension, an agricultural service for our state. We are in Hardiness Zone 6a, so trees will need to be adapted to the level of heat and cold that we experience as well. 

Call Anthony’s for more help at (812) 345-5694

We are always happy to provide a list of recommendations of trees that would be perfect for your yard based on your specific needs. Above all, we want to reiterate that creating a property that birds love is about having a variety of native Indiana trees. Anthony’s can help you pick these, and your yard will be the neighborhood bird hotspot in no time.