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How to make a DIY hummingbird feeder using a glass jelly jar

This charming DIY hummingbird feeder is perfect for backyards and apartment balconies alike! Complete with homemade nectar, you can have this project done in under an hour.

jar hummingbird feeder with red lid
(Image credit: Dori Turner)

If you want to make a hummingbird feeder because they flock to your balcony in summer or because you want to make more of a home for them in your yard come winter, I have the perfect project.

We live in an older neighborhood with mature trees and towering flower bushes. Because of this we’re graced with beautiful cardinals, blue jays, and hummingbirds when the spring and summer months roll around. So I thought I'd make a DIY hummingbird feeder to attract more into our garden and, to provide food for any latecomers in the fall and winter months.

We love watching the birds and have always wanted more wildlife in the garden. This DIY hummingbird feeder works really well and only requires an old jelly jar plus a few basic DIY tools.

The pattern in the daisy lid allows their long beaks to reach in for the nectar. And the best part? You can make this feeder for around $15

Supplies:

diy hummingbird feeder supplies

(Image credit: Dori Turner)

1. Glass jelly jar (opens in new tab)

2. Daisy lid (opens in new tab)

3. Eyelets (opens in new tab)

4. Chain (opens in new tab)

5. Spray paint

6. A good drill and bit

7. Needle nose pliers

8. Sugar (opens in new tab) and water (for the nectar)

1. Paint the Lid

After gathering your supplies, the first step is to paint the lid. You’ll see a lot of hummingbird feeders that use the color red. That’s because according to Brand Wine conservancy, it’s been proven (opens in new tab) they are attracted to the bright hue. Spray paint the daisy lid and allow it to fully dry.

It goes without saying that you should use a spray paint that is non-toxic for animals. Birding Outdoors (opens in new tab) recommends Rustoleum (opens in new tab) which you can find at Lowe's

painting daisy lid

(Image credit: Dori Turner)

2. Drill Holes and Attach Eyelets

Once the lid is dry, you’re ready to drill pilot holes for the eyelets. Using a drill bit, drill two holes opposite of each other on the lid. Screw in the eyelets. If they’re loose and you’re worried about them pulling out, put a drop of hot glue on the underneath side of the lid around the eyelets to secure them in place.

We like Ryobi's Hot Glue gun (opens in new tab) for jobs like this.

drilling holes in lid

(Image credit: Dori Turner)

3. Attach the Chain

Using needle nose pliers, attach the chain to the eyelets by using the pliers to pry the chain link open, slipping it onto the eyelet, and then pushing the link closed. 

4. Make up your nectar  

Homemade nectar recipe:

1. 2 Tablespoons of sugar

2. ½ cup of hot water

This simple recipe of four parts water to one part sugar mimics the nectar found in flowers. Bring ½ cup of water to a boil on the stove. Remove and add 2 tablespoons of sugar and stir until it dissolves. 

5. Fill and hang your DIY hummingbird feeder

Allow the homemade nectar to cool fully, before pouring it into the jelly jar. Attach the lid, hang your feeder, kick back and enjoy hummingbird watching!

hummingbird feeder

(Image credit: Dori Turner)

Dori Turner writes blog posts and feature articles on affordable design and DIY from her home in the heart of Oklahoma. She has a passion for teaching others how they can transform their home on a budget.

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