Now is the time to put out your hummingbird feeder if you want to attract hummingbirds to your Southern Tier backyard.  I put mine out Saturday and yesterday saw my first hummer.  The thing about hummingbirds, if you feed them early, they will stay with you until they fly away this Autumn.  In fact, I've talked with many listeners who tell me they return year to year.

Hummers love nectar.  The easiest way to do this is to plant hummingbird-friendly flowers. Any good local grower can offer some great suggestions for you.  I've gotten some great advice from Mountain Top Greenhouses in Tioga Center, Robby's Produce in Vestal and Nanticoke Gardens in Endicott.

Hummingbird feeders are popular at Agway in Endicott and Owego and you can even purchase the nectar there of make your own in advance, bottle it up and place in the refrigerator for an easy to access supply.

Here is the easy recipe I use:  1 part white sugar, 4 parts water, boil 1-2 minutes, cool at room temperature and store in the refrigerator.  Never use honey or artificial sweeteners and DO NOT use red food coloring in your own solution, as most feeders have red on them.  You don't want to harm the birds with dye.  Also, you will need to replace the nectar once to twice a week, especially in the heat of the Summer.

Last night, I watched a great video on hummingbirds that gave me a new appreciation for these amazing birds.  I'm sure you will learn a few things about these backyard wonders.