Wondering why Colorado blue spruce, Norway spruce, concolor fir and other non-native species are no longer available? Native alternatives, such as white spruce and balsam fir, support an amazing diversity of butterflies, moths, and other insects that are food resources that birds and other wildlife require for their survival. Non-native plants support few other living things. So why not try these native trees instead?
The wildlife comes at no extra charge.
Besides wildlife, what other benefits are there to planting native?
- Native plants support an amazing diversity of butterflies, moths, and other insects. Non-native plants simply cannot perform this critical habitat role.
- By supporting a diversity of insects, native plants also provide food for birds and other insect predators. Most songbirds require insect food for their nestlings to reach adulthood.
- Support your local farmer – incorporating more native plants into your home landscape helps attract pollinators that increase crop yields, as well as insect predators that reduce costs for pest management.
- Native plants help turn your backyard into a learning laboratory; do your part to inspire the next generation of scientists and nature stewards.
- Native plants are our natural heritage. They’re part of what makes our region a unique and inspiring place.
- Local first! Plants that are grown from local seed collected within our region make them well adapted to our climate and supportive of animals living in our region. Native plants are a good choice for the hands-off gardener – when properly placed native plants require little additional effort to thrive.
- Native plants are beautiful! The birds and butterflies they attract aren’t so shabby, either.
- Native plants pose no risk of becoming invasive.
- There’s a difference between “native plants” and “wildflowers” – read the article from Michigan State to make sure you know what you’re buying.