Native Gardening

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by JBtheExplorer, May 17, 2016.

  1. JBtheExplorer

    JBtheExplorer Native Gardener

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    Sure, there's a separate Gardening Forum, but I thought I'd share with you all, too, because I know many of you have an interest in native gardening, and it can go hand in hand with our garden ponds. Most of you know that I have a native garden away from the pond. I started it in 2014. It was a small 8' by 8' square, just 64 sq. ft. I was thrilled to add a section of native plants to my yard.

    Last year, I wanted more. I expanded it to 250 sq. ft. and also added a separate vegetable garden. The size was much better for what I had in mind. Well, as it turns out, it still wasn't enough for me. I made the decision today to add on once more. This time, I decided to finish it off and do something I've been thinking about for awhile. I have a fire pit out by the native garden, and I've been thinking about surrounding it with native plants since last year. It would make it feel a little more natural, and make it feel almost like a campsite (other than houses all around, but you get the idea).

    I began removing grass today. The new garden section is going to be bigger than what I already have. The total native garden will go from 250 sq. ft. to somewhere around 600 sq. ft.! I'm planning on doing the entire thing for free by collecting seeds from my already-established garden. Luckily, I also have quite a few seedlings in the garden that I can move over to the new section and help it fill in a little better by next year. I can hardly wait!

    Here's a blueprint I made that also shows when each section was added.
    GardenPlan2016.jpg



    For those of you who aren't familiar with native gardening, consider adding one of your own!
    All plants I have are native to North America, and most are native to my exact location. Native plants help just about every native insect and animal you can think of, from butterflies to fish, and from birds to frogs. Many native plants are bright and showy, and look good in most garden styles. Here's a few photos I took of my own native plants last year.

    IMG_3741 copy.jpg
    IMG_2086 (2) copy.jpg
    IMG_1975 copy1.jpg



    For everyone who grows native plants, consider this thread the place to share your photos of them! I'd love to see everyone's native plants throughout the year. I'll certainly be sharing plenty of my own. (y)
     
    JBtheExplorer, May 17, 2016
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  2. JBtheExplorer

    KC Crook

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    Im excited to see how thrilled you are about gardening. Unfortunatley, "native" gardening is a bunch of drought tolerant, uninteresting plants I have no interest in talking about (for me) Lol. I do love gardening tho and encase my most precious in deer fence to keep out the native "goats" and they are also, for the most part, too thirsty, to be friendly to the local HOA. I dont care. Native is not my thing, cuz I dont do desert well, lol.
     
    KC Crook, May 17, 2016
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  3. JBtheExplorer

    JBtheExplorer Native Gardener

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    Funny, I feel the same about non-native plants.
    Not all native plants are drought tolerant. Native doesn't mean drought tolerant. There are many native wetland plants, many native plants that will die quickly in dry soil.

    I'd personally take my highly interesting Wild Columbine over non-native plants like Hostas or Coral Bells any day.
    IMG_7622 copy2.jpg
    IMG_7646 copy2.jpg
     
    JBtheExplorer, May 18, 2016
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  4. JBtheExplorer

    sissy sissy

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    You need to move here kc .So far every thing I have planted has grown well .I love green .My Auntie lived in Arizona and I did not like visiting everything on her property was stones and prickly things of some sort .It all looked grey to me and hot .I did not plant all native .I have banana plants and canna and elephant ears and I just love the tropical look they give .I guess i was meant to live in a tropical area than the country .Even though I came from the country does not mean I can't love any plants .born in PA raised in NJ and retired to VA .I know here it took me years to get the clay soil to grow grass and trees .I just love the look of any plant no matter what they are .I always save the half dead plants at the stores .Seems native here is junk cars in yards and dead plants and dead grass .They plant stuff and leave it die .
     
    sissy, May 18, 2016
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  5. JBtheExplorer

    KC Crook

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    I grew up in St Rose LA, and maybe thats why the high desert xeriscape thing is hard for me. Although bulbs were a no go there cuz of the high water table, the lushness of it was fantastic. i jst try to recapture just a bit of that for my zone. I know how you feel, in a way, there in VA. Humidity, mostly mild winters, and rain.
     
    KC Crook, May 19, 2016
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  6. JBtheExplorer

    KC Crook

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    I also lived in tucson for several years and hated it! Except passion vines did great there! (If watered of course)
     
    KC Crook, May 19, 2016
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  7. JBtheExplorer

    KC Crook

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    Ahhh, cuz you have lovely native plants. Here, there are very few due to the high desert conditions. We are russian sage, and umm...anything the deer wont eat...most of which is uninteresting, lol.
     
    KC Crook, May 19, 2016
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  8. JBtheExplorer

    Nepen

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    I just have the native pitcher plants ;)

    I'm starting to buy a lot of native plants, especially for pond but not inclusive. So my plants are a mixture of both native and non native. Only my pitcher plants are native to the area.

    When I got them
    IMG_0477.JPG

    IMG_1570.JPG

    This year
    IMG_5282.JPG
     
    Nepen, May 19, 2016
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  9. JBtheExplorer

    JBailey Jack of all trades; master of some

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    I love gardening with native plants! I'm lucky enough to live across the road from second growth woods, and my lot still has some 'wild' corners, so we add to them periodically with appropriate species. Our county also has a big plant sale each spring, with great deals on bulk starts of all kinds of natives. We have added tons of forage and habitat to our hedgerows. I hope I can find bog plants I like for my next project.
     
    JBailey, May 19, 2016
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  10. JBtheExplorer

    KC Crook

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    image.jpg Lol, heres a "native" here. So, xeriscape options are available. I cant say that Im very good with them. Lotsa lydia broom, lavender, russian sage, and juniper varieties. Some Yucca and grasses, barberry too. im still learning. image.jpg
     
    KC Crook, May 19, 2016
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  11. JBtheExplorer

    KC Crook

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    Those pitchers are lovely! If still in LA, I woulda planted those!
     
    KC Crook, May 19, 2016
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  12. JBtheExplorer

    sissy sissy

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    passion flowers are very invasive here .I made the mistake of planting one and have had a hard time controlling it .I love your rocks KC .
     
    sissy, May 19, 2016
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  13. JBtheExplorer

    KC Crook

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    Yes, we planted them in front of my house in LA too and they took over our front porch. No surprise the new owners yanked them out after we sold it. But it did well on a trellis in AZ when the water was controlled. But the catepillars ate it up pretty bad.
     
    KC Crook, May 19, 2016
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  14. JBtheExplorer

    Stephen T.

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    KC,

    Pitcher plants are a good possibility in your area. They grow native out on the west side of the coast range about 15 miles inland from Port Orford, Oregon. There are lots of them up near the headwaters of the Elk River around 1000 foot elevation. The photo is a rather spectacular spot we discovered. Eve actually spotted it back from the road about 300 feet, just out of the Copper Salmon Wilderness area. It is a mineral spring that forms flowstone, then flows into the Elk River up where it's tiny. Note the pitcher plants growing next to it!

    This area has nitrogen poor soils (ultramafic), so carnivorous plants do well here. The pitcher plant, Darlingtonia Californica captures insects in the tall hooded tube which has downward pointing hairs. At the base are digestive liquids that allow the Pitcher plant to absorb the nitrogen for insects.

    3553-60elkhdwatersflowstone.jpg
     
    Stephen T., May 19, 2016
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  15. JBtheExplorer

    JBtheExplorer Native Gardener

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    If you dive into the world of native plants, you will find a lot of interesting and showy plants in your area. The US is filled with them, no matter the zone you're in.

    A close relative to the Wild Columbine I posted is native to your area. Crimson Columbine (Aquilegia formosa).
    Aquilegia formosa 16.jpg

    You also have Showy Milkweed (Asclepias speciosa), which is highly popular due to it's interesting flower shape and color.
    Asclepias_speciosa_(5257741919).jpg

    Blue-eyed Grass (Sisyrinchium bellum) is also a great native in your area, I grow a similar specie and it's one of my favorites.
    Blue_Eyed_Grass,_Bay_Area.jpg

    Azure Penstemon (Penstemon azureus) and Small Penstemon (Penstemon parvulus) are natives that I wish I had in my own area. They're too damn cool.
    penstemon-azureus-4.jpg
    penstemon-parvulus-05.jpg

    (All photos above are from various online sources)

    That's what I found after a quick search, but I'm sure there's many more, Of course, plants that aren't native to your area, but are US natives, like Long-headed Coneflower and Orange Milkweed would likely do just fine in your area, too.
    IMG_2716 copy3.jpg IMG_1531 copy.jpg
     
    JBtheExplorer, May 20, 2016
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  16. JBtheExplorer

    KC Crook

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    Those are all beautiful, but how many are deer resistant...and I dont mean just a munch and go...more like...yuck...I dont want to eat that ever. Because our deer here are very bad. Our neighborhood is set up deer friendly. Thruways for them, ect. All our fencing is controlled for their benefit. We are notorious in the area for our deer. We go to the local nursery and people say, "Oh, for Shastina? I dont know." Flowering plants like shasta daisy, foxglove, iris, and daffadill are mostly u molested. Not much else of any color. I have butterfly bushes that get just stripped. Beebalm, coneflower, marigolds...eaten away. Young lavender even has been shaved off. Only after the lavender matures is it safe. Its sooo crazy!
     
    KC Crook, May 21, 2016
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  17. JBtheExplorer

    KC Crook

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    Thanks sissyabout the rocks. There were alot just pell mell about the property so Ive collected them for a shade rock garden thats relatively deer resistant. Its still a work in progress, lol image.jpeg
     
    KC Crook, May 21, 2016
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  18. JBtheExplorer

    Stephen T.

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    Back in the day... We used to hang little satchels of blood meal on our plants to keep the deer from becoming drug addicts. It usually worked, but bears sometimes caused problems with that!
     
    Stephen T., May 21, 2016
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  19. JBtheExplorer

    KC Crook

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    Haha! Umm...deer vs bear! :nailbiting:
     
    KC Crook, May 21, 2016
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  20. JBtheExplorer

    Tula

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    I've recently discovered The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens, has a wealth of information about plants from our area. We have an area of deep shade , so purchased some Christmas Ferns, hoping they take off :)

    Our area has been devastated by the emerald ash borer, very sad. On Mother's Day, we planted a North Red Oak tree, that does well in our area :)
     
    Tula, May 21, 2016
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