Gardening with Native Plants
A plant is considered native to southeastern Pennsylvania if it was here before the European settlers arrived. Natives contribute to our regional identity, provide habitats for southeastern Pennsylvania wildlife, exhibit natural defenses against southeastern Pennsylvania pests, and have adapted to southeastern Pennsylvania weather – including extremes of drought, flood and frost.
As development transforms meadows and woods into shopping centers and highways, southeastern Pennsylvania’s native plant population is in decline. By growing native plants, you can help preserve the natural flora of Pennsylvania, which, in turn, supports the area’s wildlife and helps the environment.
As water reserves decrease and water use increases, the demand for water could far outstrip our supply. For this reason, regardless of where you live, you should consider alternatives to water intensive landscaping – xeriscaping is one of the best alternatives.
Xeriscaping does not, as many believe, turn a thriving green lawn into a dry desert featuring rocks and cacti. Xeriscaping is simply a landscaping method that conserves water and energy. Although xeriscaping principles are essential in arid areas, practicing them everywhere makes environmental sense.
Check out the answers to a few basic questions on our green gardening techniques: