The reasons we love native plants at Rainbow Gardens are numerous, but one of the main reasons we encourage purchases of native plants is because doing so lines up with the main philosophy of our business, gardening success! We want nothing more than for you to be successful in all of your landscaping endeavors and we know that incorporating native plants helps you achieve this. Today we’re explaining our love of native plants, providing a link highlighting some of our favorite native plants for fall, and offering a few tips to keep in mind when it comes to these sometimes overlooked gems in the nursery.
Directly above is a photo from our Event Coordinator, Laura Jarvis’s backyard. You can see just how amazing a landscape can look when you incorporate native plants. The stunner is the native perennial, Texas Fall Aster, but you can see other native plants like: Zinnia, Blue Mistflower, Mexican Buttercup, Blue Porterweed, and the Texas Superstar® “Fireworks” Gomphrena. The featured photo at the top of the blog is another of our native plants, Swamp or Pink Milkweed.
4 Reasons For Choosing Native plants in San Antonio Landscapes
1. Native plants are superior to imported plants.
Native plants that have been adapted to a specific region’s climate and soil are going to be much stronger and much more resilient than plants that are use to growing somewhere else. For example: Someone who is use to living in cold weather the majority of the year who comes to visit Texas during our three months of hot-as-Hades summer, is going to be pretty darn miserable. It’s the same for plants! Non-native plants will struggle to adjust to our temperatures, periods of droughts, and rather poor native soils.
2. Incorporating native plants into your landscape helps restore our city’s ecosystem.
We all know about the plight of the Monarch butterflies and usually try our best to plant more native milkweeds for them, but there are other native wildlife species that struggling more often to find sources for food and shelter. Commute just about anywhere right now in San Antonio and you’ll find dozens of medians, once filled with wildflowers, that are now ripped up and replaced with concrete for ever-expanding highways. Construction is as far as the eye can see. We need to replace what we’ve taken away from our native wildlife. (P.S. It’s the perfect time of year to plant wildflower seeds!) Wildlife will reap the benefits of native plants offering them food, flowers full of nectar, and hosting options to lay their eggs and feed their young. You will reap the benefits too! The simple joy of hummingbirds zooming around your landscape, the delightful discovery of a bird nest full of eggs, or the dizzying affect of a swarm of butterflies and bees enjoying the sunshine and your flowers is good for the soul!
3. Remember the story of the Ugly Duckling turning into a beautiful swan when it comes to native plants.
At first glance, native plants that are potted up from growers and waiting to be taken home aren’t always the most attractive plants in the nursery. They aren’t the show-stopping, gotta-have-it-now, annuals that easily seduce the eyes. BUT…when these specimens are offered a space in your landscape and are allowed to grow in their native habitat, you will be amazed at their beauty and the additional treat of attracting in our winsome, native wildlife. Native plants aren’t meant to be housed in black nursery pots; they need to stretch out their roots in our native soil to offer their long lasting intrigue.
4. Choosing native plants is an easy way to have more time to delight in your landscape, with less work and less expense in the long run.
You’ll find you spend less money on pesticides, fungicides, plant food, etc… because native plants tend to have less disease and pest issues, as well as less need for an abundance of fertilizer. Established native plants require little supplemental irrigation. Native plants perform best when allowed to grow in their natural shape, so less pruning is needed. Your gardening workload is decreased and your time allotted to just sit back and enjoy your landscape is increased. Isn’t it time we made time for enjoyment? Buy native and relax! Be sure to take a look at this link for some of our favorite fall-blooming native plants.
~The Happy Gardener, Lisa Mulroy