Landscaping With Native Plants Makes Your Life Easier (And Your Wildlife Happier)
Native New England plants give you a lot of bang for your gardening buck. There's a beautiful shrub or a perennial for almost any location you've got, whether it's sunny, shady, dry or downright boggy.
And why wouldn't there be? After all, these plants evolved here in New England, not in Asia somewhere. They're able to survive and thrive in conditions where imported plants struggle. Not having to replace expensive trees and shrubs will even have your wallet thanking you for gardening with New England plants!
Landscaping with native plants makes your life easier; you put in less effort watering and pruning, and in return you have more time to lie around in a hammock, enjoying a glorious landscape.
And the local birds and other critters will love you for going native. Why put out a plastic bird feeder when you can plant a beautiful living one instead?
If you've got a larger space that remains somewhat wet, plant larger trees like the native river birch, or willows such as the pussy willow and the black willow.
They provide habitats for insects that the birds will feed on. And our winged friends adore the berries found on native shrubs such as viburnum, elderberry, chokecherry and serviceberry.
Many New England neighborhoods are surrounded by woodland, and there is often a harsh, abrupt transition from the forest to the lawn. Any of the native New England plants listed above will help make a softer, more natural transition from woodland to suburban yard.
For sheer toughness combined with beauty, try a Northern Bayberry. Equally at home as a lovely hedge or toughing it out in sandy, thin soil, bayberries were once used (and still are) to scent candles.
This photo shows the Northern Bayberry extensively used in the landscaping surrounding the York Public Library in York, Maine.
The shorter shrub is the bayberry, and the larger tree in the picture is a native amelanchier (aka serviceberry, Juneberry, shadblow). The tree is just beginning to ripen its berries for the local birds.
You can't go wrong with trying some of our native New England and Maine perennials and shrubs this gardening year.
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