Native Plants for Delaware Landscapes

June 27, 2012 in Plant Selection & Design

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What is a native plant?

A native plant is one that originated and occurs naturally in a region. Nonnative plants also may occur naturally, but were introduced from another region. They survive without intervention and compete successfully with native plants. Native and nonnative plants often occur side by side in natural stands. Only historical records can trace true origin.

Why landscape with native plants?

Since native plants are indigenous in an area, they are ideally suited to grow in a similar habitat within the region. Having competed with other plants, native plants have proven themselves well adapted. Plants used in a landscape environment that is similar to their native habitat will grow with a minimum of maintenance. When appropriately placed in the landscape, native plants require less water and
fewer pesticide applications. If native plants require pampering, the most likely reason is an unsuitable location.

Planting native species protects them from extinction. As land is developed, some native plants are pushed out of their natural habitats. The sensitive use of these plants in the landscape preserves them for all to appreciate.

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