Right Plant + Right Place = Success
Based on the fact sheets highlighted in our Tried and True Native Plant Selections for the Mid-Atlantic library, Best Bets fact sheets recommend groups of plants well suited for a particular use, a special purpose, a distinct set of conditions. These lists are not exhaustive but they reflect the local experience of our Master Gardeners. For more information about how the fact sheets have been updated and tips on their use, read: Updated Website Resources on Best Bets for Particular Uses.
Tried and True Cover Crops
Cover crops are often transition plantings used in crop rotation or before establishing more permanent landscaping to improve soil texture, water infiltration, or fertility. They can be used in barren areas where soil is depleted, compacted, or eroded, but they also can serve as green mulch in beds. Many store nitrogen in soil, which promotes growth of later plantings.
Best Bets to Enrich Soil
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Tried and True Native Plants
The pdfs listed below link to individual Tried and True Native Plant fact sheets. For Best Bets to replace exotic invasives, visit Invasive Plants and Better Alternatives. Those pdfs describe problems posed by exotic species listed as invasive in the City of Alexandria and Arlington County, Virginia. They recommend native alternatives, with links to the Tried and True Native Plant fact sheets, that possess similar characteristics to the invasive plants but that provide benefits for wildlife
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These plants attract myriad beneficial insects. The red and blue superscribed numbers after particular species reflect the rankings for total pollinator visits and for pollinator diversity over 3-year period during which Penn State Extension monitored 86 native species, e.g., Pycnanthemum muticum was ranked #1 for visits and #2 for diversity.