Native plants come in a wide range of colors, sizes and leaf textures and can become an integral part of a low-maintenance landscape. All regions have many native plants to choose from and they are much easier to grow than an exotic plant specie.
What are Native Plants?
Natives, as they are affectionately called, are plants which have adapted to the soil and climate conditions in which they grow.
Also referred to as wild flowers, natives can be seen growing alongside of roadways, in undeveloped acreage, swampland, desserts and wooded areas. Over time, these plants have acclimated to whatever conditions they found themselves in and learned how to survive without any human intervention.
The beauty of native plants rival those which have begun their lives in controlled environments. A few examples include a Hawaiian native known as the Greenflower, the Vancouver Groundpine that is found in Washington State and the Indian Blanket that is native to the state of Texas.
Native plants are a favorite food and shelter plant for the insects and animals living in the area. Just as the plants have adapted to their location, the wildlife have also adapted their needs so they can be met by the plants common to the area. Beneficial garden bugs and pollinating bees thrive on the offerings of native plants. The nectar of natives attracts and feeds birds and butterflies.
Benefits of Natives
Natives plants do not require fertilization. They have adapted to life without the aid of humans and know how to derive all their needed nutrients from the soil. When natives are grown in your landscape, no chemical fertilizer leaches into waterways.
There will be no need to use chemical pest control products (that also leaches into waterways) either since the native plants have adapted to the pests in the region.
Natives develop a deep root system and help protect against soil erosion more effectively than exotic plants.
Less water will be needed in the landscape because the natives are already used to the moisture conditions of the area. When combining the use of artificial turf and native plants in a home landscape, the landscape become almost maintenance-free and definitely eco-friendly.