Finding native plants

How do you go about finding native plants for your landscape?

Almost every nursery has a few native plants.   It’s always a very good idea to decide what you want before you go to the nursery. Get a good guide to native landscaping plants, such as Native Texas Plants by Sally Wasowski. Take it with you to the nursery and refer to it while you are there. It makes it less likely that you will get distracted by the non-native exotics that you are sure to encounter. Unfortunately many nursery professionals are not knowledgeable about native plants so its good to have a reference.

Fortunately numerous retail and wholesale nurseries around the state carry good selections of native plants.  The link below will take you to a directory maintained by Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center where you can search for native plant suppliers by your zip code.

Want ideas about choosing natives for your yard?

The Austin Chapter surveyed their members to find out their favorites and presented the results–wildflowers (for sun, part-shade, and shade), shrubs, vines, grasses, and yuccas– in this colorful powerpoint .

They will work in many other parts of Texas too.

Other places to look for natives

In addition to nurseries there are lots of alternatives. These are more likely than nurseries to have uncommon or unusual selections.

Chapter Plant Sales

Many of our own chapters hold plant sales, especially in Spring or early Fall, both prime times in Texas for incorporating native plants into your landscape.   Also your local chapter can provide resource information and advice specific to where you live.   Look under the chapters heading to find out how to contact your local chapter.

Arboretums and Botanical Gardens

Texas is fortunate to have many outstanding arboretums and botanical gardens where you can see and research native plants. They can be good place to look to see how natives can be incorporated into a landscape design, In addition many of them sell plants either year-round or at special sales.

Master Gardeners

The Texas Master Gardeners are an educational resource sponsored by Texas A&M AgriLIFE Extension Service.  Many Master Gardener chapters hold spring or fall plant sales which often feature many native plants.

Collecting Wild Plants

Read our official policy for collecting in the wild or along roadsides.