Archive | Native Plants

Parasitic Plants for Gardens and Landscapes

by Ian Caton Parasitic plants for the home garden? The notion usually elicits one of two responses: “Aren’t parasites bad? Why would you want them in your garden?” or “I would love to have them in my garden, but aren’t they uncultivatable?” (more…)

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Bringing Back Native Thistles

by the Xerces Society Native thistles are a largely misunderstood and wrongly maligned group of wildflowers. Often confused with their prickly, invasive relatives such as Canada thistle, in reality, native thistles are benign and valuable plants that fill a variety of significant niches alongside more esteemed wildflowers such as coneflowers, prairie clovers, and blazing star. […]

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“Gardens Gone Native” Garden Tour

Seven years of educating the public on the intrinsic value and benefits of gardening with California native plants by Colene Rauh In its seventh year, this Northern Sacramento Valley garden tour features landscapes that demonstrate the versatility and creativity as well as the drought tolerance of most California native plants. (more…)

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An Introduction to Joe-Pye

by Ian Caton Joe-Pye weed is a familiar sight in wetlands and roadside ditches and is commonly used in the landscape trade. However, understanding and identifying the differences between the various species is difficult for many who aren’t botanists. Further, the information available to designers about the specific habitats for each species is often vaguely […]

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High-Impact Native American Shrubs

by Thomas Berger In recent years homeowners have developed a consciousness about the need to include more native plants in their gardens. But when thinking of native shrubs in particular, what often comes to mind are bulky plants that appear “out of scale” and are sparse in ornamental features. Serviceberry, Chokeberry and American Cranberry Bush […]

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Prairie-Oak Ecosystems of the Pacific Northwest

text and photos by Eileen Stark Plants, the primary producers on this planet, belong to irreplaceable, intricate ancient ecosystems, within which they support and depend on other species – both flora and fauna – to survive. I like to think of it as an everlasting give and take. These systems are so complex that even minor […]

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Native Grass and Wildflower Seeding: Q& A with the Experts

by Tara Mitchell ELA’s 23rd Annual Conference in March brought together three highly knowledgeable experts for a question and answer panel session on Native Grass and Wildflower Seeding: Mark Fiely, Horticulturalist at Ernst Conservation Seeds, Carlos Montoya, owner of Native Plant Associates on Martha’s Vineyard, and Larry Weaner of Larry Weaner Landscape Associates. Moderated by […]

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Best Native Plants in a Drought

This year’s drought has challenged all of our plants, but native plants seem to show more resilience. We asked a few ELA members to name their top five native plants and describe how they “weathered” the season. (more…)

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