“As we start to think about our gardens and what plants would best enhance our landscapes, consider planting natives,” says Chris Baliko, Chris Baliko, Accredited Organic Land Care Professional and owner of Growing Solutions. Natives are plants that occurred in a particular region prior to European migration.
‘What are the benefits of planting natives?’ you might ask. Native plants are adapted to the climate and soils in this region. This means they will be less stressed when planted, which allows them to thrive. They have a tendency to resist damage from freezing temperatures, drought, diseases, and even herbivores. Native plants require less maintenance once established. Who doesn’t want less maintenance in their garden? They also save you money and time as they require less irrigation and little or no fertilization once established. Native plants are kept in check by nature. They tend not to run amuck like some plants that have been brought in from other regions of the world. They also tend to attract other native species and increase biodiversity. Natives add interest in the form of flowers, branching habits, foliage, and even their history.
To get started on finding native species for our area, check out these websites:
New England Wildflower Society, newfs.org/store - click on plant availability
USDA Plants Database website, plants.usda.gov – to learn more about native plants
National Wildlife Federation, nwf.org/How-to-Help/Garden-for-Wildlife/Gardening-Tips/Using-Native-Plants/Northeast.aspx.
For more information about Native planting contact Chris at Growing Solutions. 203.476.9765. Growing Solutions offers organic lawn care, sustainable landscape design, plant and tree care, and tick management services throughout Fairfield County. GrowSo.com.