Soil & Water Conservation District

Why Plant Native?

Native plants offer many benefits to the local ecology of areas that they are found. Over time, changes in human activity including urbanization, ornamental landscaping, and maximizing farmed ground have lead to drastic declines and/or fragmentation of native trees, shrubs, grasses, and wildflowers.
Not only are native plants adapted to our specific regional climate making them hardier and easier to maintain than non-natives, they offer the exact food and habitat resources that our native wildlife needs. Many of our native pollinator species are facing alarming population declines as a result of a lack of food and habitat.
Birds rely on the larvae of pollinators as a key high protein source of food for their young in the Spring. Humans need pollinators, too, to help us grow food crops such as tomatoes, peppers, chocolate, and berries.
Plants reside at the foundation of all food webs. They harness the energy from the sun and pass it along through the ecosystem. Without them, there would be no life. Since a majority of land east of the Mississippi is privately owned, it is up to us transform our otherwise “dead landscapes” into “living landscapes” .

Ready to get started?

Use this plant finder to generate lists of fantastic native wildflowers, shrubs, and trees customized to your zip-code!
Check out this list of native species that focuses mainly on herbaceous perennial forbs and includes a few woody plants.

More Information:

University of Delaware professor, Doug Tallamy, has published two books Bringing Nature Home and its successor Nature’s Best Hope that discuss the problems of native plant decline and how to solve it in an easy to read, easy to understand fashion. Access the books and more information at

April is officially Ohio Native Plant Month! In 2019 Governor Mike DeWine signed H.B. 59 into law designating April as Ohio Native Plant Month. Check out the official website here!

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