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GARDEN TIME with DOUG – Native Plants


There is some confusion when determining if, or how, a plant is considered “native.” In my opinion, the best definition for a “native” comes from the Virginia Native Plant Society:

“Native plants are those that were growing here when the settlers first arrived and have adapted to the environmental conditions of this region over a long period of time. This gives them an advantage over introduced species by being resistant to drought, insects, and diseases and are ideal for growing in a natural garden.”

Why should someone consider native plants? It is advantageous to use native plants because they require less maintenance than horticultural varieties that have not adapted to our local weather patterns and soil conditions. Also, as land is being developed for commercial and residential growth, we are losing our native plants. It seems to be our responsibility to help preserve our natural plants for future generations by just adding a few native plants to our landscape.

Gardening with native plants is becoming a strong gardening trend with homeowners. More and more we are reading about gardening symposiums being conducted by local Master Gardeners and other horticultural professionals that include gardening with native plants as a topic. Matter of fact, this past month our very own, Eve Roemhildt conducted a seminar on native plants and it was very informative and very well attended. Eve compiled an extraordinary handout listing our native plants (trees, shrubs, vines, perennials, and grasses). We have this as a handout for anyone interested.

Here are some reasons to grow native plants:

  1. Not only do native plants produce beautiful flowers, but they also produce fruits, seeds, and nectar that are friendly to wildlife.
  2. Native plants create more diverse habitats for wildlife, attracting more than 3 times the number of beneficial insects than non-native plants.
  3. Native plants are easier to grow.
  4. Native plants invite wildlife.
  5. Native plants add natural beauty to the landscape.
  6. Native plants require less maintenance.

When you are ready, come to us and let us show you our extensive selection of native plants that we have available now.


16 thoughts on “GARDEN TIME with DOUG – Native Plants

  1. Julie,
    I am not sure what your area may be. The list that we have available is on native plants for Virginia, Maryland, and West Virginia. Are you in this area? If so, send me an email message with your address and I will be happy to mail you this handout.

  2. Doug, would you please send me the list of native plants for the Richmond area. Are there any evergreen shrubs or trees in the list?

  3. looking for the list of native plants, I live in Virginia.
    404 Old Dominion Ave, Herndon, va 20170.

    I’m in need of mostly shade to complete shade plants. Also, in need of a ground cover for a dry, COMPLETELY shaded hill.

    thank you, Brenda

  4. Doug,
    I would love to have the list of native plants for Virginia, Maryland, and West Virginia. I am interested in butterfly weed, does Meadow Farms sell it?

  5. Rob,
    I believe i was successful sending you the list to your email. Let me know if I am wrong. Thanks, Doug

  6. Anna, I believe that I was successful in forwarding this list to your email. Let me know if I am wrong and I will try again. Thanks, Doug

  7. Brenda, There is no question that you have a challenging location with the amount of shade that you seem to be describing. However, there are plants to consider. in shrubs think about Aucuba,Illicium, yew. In hardy perennials you can plant ferns, hostas, bleeding heart, etc. As for a ground cover you may want to think about Lamium. hardy geranium. And, there are some others. Doug Hensel

  8. Kathy, I believe I emailed you this list. Hopefully, I was successful. If not, let me know and I will try again. Doug Hensel

  9. This is perfect timing! My Girl Scout troop is set to visit your Stafford location in a little while to learn about this exact topic. We are planning to buy some native plants to plant at a local school for a service project.

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