Oopsy Daisy X70R141C

How colour can attract wildlife to your garden

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Animals and insects don’t see colour in the same way humans do.

You might already know that dogs have a much duller perception of the world, but what about visitors to your garden? Let’s take a look at the kind of plants you can introduce to your garden to attract more birds, bees and butterflies.


Bees can see blue, green and ultraviolet light but they can’t see red. Some flowers though have evolved to attract bees and contain a blue halo which draws bees towards the pollen. Other flowers have ultraviolet nectar guides, which are invisible to our eyes but are attractive to bees. Ivy, mint, chives, foxgloves, bluebell, honeysuckle and dandelions are all bee-friendly.

A lot of yellow flowers are attractive to bees as they look great in ultraviolet light. If you choose to plant blue or green flowers, make sure they don’t have excessive petals and that the pollen can be easily accessed.


Just like bees, birds can see ultraviolet light and so colour appears differently. The colours that attract birds vary between species. Some may be attracted to a colour similar to their own plumage as this could suggest a potential mate, but most bright colours that attract insects will also attract birds too.

The colour of your bird feeder can make a difference. Studies have shown that blue seed feeders are popular during summer months while in winter it’s silver. However, Goldfinches prefer green feeders. For peanut feeders, red is the preferred colour most notably with birds like siskins.

White however, should be avoided as it’s typically seen as a warning sign, so avoid using too much of this colour in your garden.

Make sure the colour you use is easy to see too. If it’s hidden amongst a bush or shaded by a tree, it won’t be visible to birds.


Adult butterflies are attracted to white, red, yellow, orange, pink and purple but dislike blue and green. They also prefer to feed in the sun so make sure that your flowers are getting enough sunshine to attract butterflies.

Plants with loads of deep flowers that are abundant in nectar will be the most attractive to butterflies.

But, you can’t have butterflies without caterpillars, so plants that attract them are great too. Ivy, nettles and buckthorn are all havens for caterpillars, but before you make a choice, check which are local to your area to get a better idea.

Flowers aren’t the only way to introduce creature-attracting colours to your garden. Our range of exterior paints are durable and weatherproof, so your garden can look smart all year around.

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Oopsy Daisy X70R141C
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Breezy Street R147E
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