In recent years there has been an explosion of information about native plants, so much so that it can be hard to decide where to start. Below is a short list of resources for learning more about native plants, including gardening with natives.
Getting started in your yard
The Audubon at Home program provides information, on-site consultation and recommendations to help you establish and nurture sustainable natural habitat in your backyard or other spaces. There is no charge for the site visit by a volunteer Audubon At Home Ambassador.
Gardening with native plants
The Plant NOVA Natives website is undoubtedly the best single resource for learning about plants native to Northern Virginia and using them in the landscape. If you want to cast a wider net and learn about plants native to other regions in the U.S., Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center and Missouri Botanical Garden websites are both excellent resources. Both websites also include plants native to our area.
Free publications and Apps to learn about natives
- “Super 9” Nectar and Host Plants for a Pollinator Garden brochure
- Native Plants for Northern Virginia guide and its companion Native Plant Finder App
- Northern Virginia Wildlife Gardening Database, an app based on Loudoun Wildlife’s Planting for Wildlife in Northern Virginia.
- You may also want to search the Native Plants category for information about individual plants.
Where to buy native plants
- Loudoun Wildlife’s Native Plant Sale takes place twice a year at Morven Park in Leesburg.
- Native plant nurseries in Northern Virginia and other native plant sales
How to determine if a plant is native
Sometimes plants at garden centers are labelled as “native” even when they are not native to our area. The label may just mean it is native to the U.S. Or what about plants you see growing wild next to the road. How do you know which plants really are native to our area? Consult the Digital Atlas of the Virginia Flora to found out.
Programs and field trips
Throughout the year, Loudoun Wildlife offers programs and field trips showcasing native plants. In 2020, most of these were virtual, including the HOA Native Plant Landscape Tour series. Our Partners also offer programs on native plants.