What is a Native and Why Buy Native Plants for your Landscape?
Landscaping with Native Plants A native plant is one which occurred within this region before settlement by Europeans. Native plants include ferns and club mosses; grasses, sedges and rushes; perennial and annual wildflowers; and the woody trees, shrubs, and vines which covered “Penn’s Woods” when the first settlers arrived. There are 2,100 native plant species known in Pennsylvania. An introduced or non-native plant is one that has been brought into the state and escaped cultivation to become established in the wild. At the turn of the 21st century, about 1,300 species of nonnative plants existed in Pennsylvania outside of gardens, parks and agricultural lands. That is 37 percent of Pennsylvania’s total wild plant flora. More introduced plants are identified every year.
iConserve Pennsylvania, Plant Smart Not everyone has a green thumb or the ability to know how to plant that will save them time, energy, resources, plus do good things for the environment. What we plant, how we plant and where we plant can affect our wildlife, energy usage, carbon footprint and more. In order to make wise planting decisions, it’s important to have the right tools, and we don’t just mean shovels and rakes! Become familiar with the benefits of native plants and trees and how they can help you and the environment. Natives not only look great, they require less care and provide more benefits to wildlife. They also can help keep invasive species at bay. Use our native plant database to identify some of the best natives to use to fit your needs. Our garden templates will inspire you to create an inviting and Earth-friendly landscape.
Ann Vayansky has spent many years teaching about and planting native gardens in northern Pennsylvania. She strongly advocates planting landscapes with natives to create habitats that strengthen our native wildlife populations, especially native pollinators.