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

Almost every nursery has a few native plants.  It’s always a 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.

Nurseries that sell natives

Operation Nice! is a collaboration between nurseries, growers and our local chapters. Participating nurseries feature a native “plant of the month” which has been selected to work well in local landscapes. You can find a list of participating nurseries at our Operation Nice! page.

Fortunately many retail and wholesale nurseries around the state carry good selections of native plants.  The Supplier Directory maintained by Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center lets you search for native plant nurseries and growers by your zip code. Supplier Directory – Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center site

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.


Seed exchanges / Plant exchanges

Most of our chapters provide an opportunity for seed and plants exchange. Some chapters set aside a  regular time for this as part of their monthly meetings. In all chapters there is opportunity to make informal contacts with other members who have an interest in exchanging plants or seeds. See the Chapter tab to find a chapter near you.

Additionally many of the participants in our NPSOT-NPAT Yahoo! Group are interested in exchanging plants or seeds. Post an enquiry there to find seeds or plants you are looking for.

Chapter plant sales

Many of our own chapters hold plant sales 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 places 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 / Master Naturalists

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.