Add 5 Love Nests


Want Birdsong? Add These 5 Love Nests for Valentine’s Day

Updated: February 7, 2020. By Cassy Aoyagi: Would you like birds to suddenly appear every time you are near? Forget magic and make-up! Adding love nests will fill your life with birdsong and all the joys that come with it!

Here are five LA native trees guaranteed to keep your garden (and your heart) singing:


California Oaks

California-native oak species are the preferred or sole habitat for countless native birds and fauna – the original hostesses with the mostesses. Without native oaks, migratory songbirds like warblers, vireos, flycatchers, tanagers, and grosbeaks shorten their California vacations or simply disappear.

It’s up to each of us to replace oak trees lost to development, drought and disease. As we do so, the dense canopies of oak will help LA recover our distinctive, shady sort of cool and give the birds a reason to sing.



Manzanita, Arctostaphylos

Manzanita’s architectural branches make attractive, harmonious multi-family dwellings. It’s no wonder everyone from Western Scrub Jay, Black-headed Grosbeak, Mockingbird, and Fox Sparrow to Anna’s and Allen’s Hummingbirds want to live here. Each can harvest its preferred diet without even leaving the nest!

Nectar-lovers delight in chandeliers of bell-like blooms. Berry and seed lovers, including humans, also get their fill. Just in case award-winning Manzanita recipes entice you to compete with the Fox Sparrows, may remind you of the rewards of sharing?


Western Redbud, Cercis Occidentalis

Lovebirds are sweet on these sweetheart-pink blooms! Cercis loves them back so much her leaves are heart shaped! Western Redbud is heaven for hummingbirds and Lesser Goldfinch, who enjoy Cercis seeds. She is a great way to add seasonal color and birdsong to small spaces, and – get this – you too can eat the blooms – delicious!



Elderberry, Sambucus

There are so many reasons to plant Elderberry. They bring all the birds! If you have oaks or sycamore nearby, you may be familiar with this tune!
In addition to birdsong, Elderberry provides a beautiful, lacy privacy screen full of delicate, dancing blooms. It also poses some challenge – like discovering the perfect recipe for Elderberry wine.


Toyon, Heteromeles arbutifolia (aka Christmas Berry)

Wouldn’t it be great if these bright red berries attracted love birds for Valentine’s Day? While Toyon is named Christmas Berry for a reason, we just may have bouquets of berries left for our sweethearts this year – isn’t that incredible!
In any case, if you plant Toyon now you’ll be delighted to have him around at Thanksgiving. Cedar Waxwings will be tweeting their gratitude from the moment Toyon’s beautiful “Christmas” berries turn Valentine-red.


From Love Nest to Honeymoon Haven

Bringing birds and the healing effects of song to your garden is really as simple as 1, 2, 3. Planting native trees is the first step. Then, plant other natives. Finally, add a water feature. Actually, 3 is a bonus that turns your Love Nest into a high end resort!
Want more plant suggestions? See our Pinterest boards:
Follow FormLA Landscaping’s board Blooming Now: August in LA on Pinterest.

Sources and Resources

Want more information about California Native Trees? Check out:

Curious about the benefits of birdsong? Check out: