Category Archives: Native Plants

🦋 Creating an Oasis for Pollinators 🐝

Homeowners have an opportunity to restore native habitat for pollinators, birds, and other wildlife.  Continue reading

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Native Alternatives to Overused Foundation Plants, Part II

In Part I of this article, posted last week, we presented alternatives to some traditional foundation shrubs that are considered invasive in Arlington County and the City of Alexandria. In Part II, we consider alternatives to other overused non-native shrubs. Continue reading

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Native Alternatives to Overused Foundation Plants, Part I

In walks around my neighborhood in Arlington, Virginia, I repeatedly see a limited palette of plants surrounding the foundations of homes and apartment buildings. The popular selections include euonymus, privet, cherry laurel, nandina, barberry, and Asian azaleas. Other favorites are boxwood, yew, burning bush, bush honeysuckle, and mophead hydrangea. While some of these non-native plant choices are benign, others are considered invasive in Northern Virginia and beyond, escaping from cultivation through the spread of their pollen and seeds.

Our Tried and True Native Plant Selections for the Mid-Atlantic Region offers many attractive substitute shrubs that can add beauty and diversity to the landscape while providing nectar, pollen, and fruit for the insect and animal species with which they have evolved. Read on to learn about the ornamental qualities and wildlife support offered by native alternatives for these popular alien shrubs. Continue reading

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Geranium maculatum, 2020 Wildflower of the Year

Geranium maculatum (wild or spotted geranium), a perennial native to eastern North America, has been chosen as the Wildflower of the Year for 2020 by the Virginia Native Plant Society. This delightful herbaceous plant can be seen in two demonstration gardens maintained by Extension Master Gardeners (Glencarlyn Library Community Garden and the Shade Garden) this month. Continue reading

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