Are you the type of person who is ecosystem friendly and who wants to bring Mother Nature to your backyard? If so, you are not the only one. Using native plants as part of landscaping is becoming very popular in Missouri. Native landscaping is a way of saying no to pesticides and fertilizers and yes to biodiversity creating landscapes that are ecological. Beginner and professional gardeners are starting to use native landscaping to reduce maintenance and promote plant and wildlife conservation.
Since Missouri native plants have lived in our region before people were settled here, they are well adjusted to the extreme weather and provide food and shelter for wildlife, including birds, bees, butterflies, and insects. Missouri native plants provide you with a garden that is an ecological friendly landscape that will become easier to maintain as it matures. It also saves you money on water, fertilizer, pesticides, and labor.
If you are on the fence of whether or not you want to use native plants as a part of your landscape, here are a few reasons why you should.
Native Missouri plants such as wildflowers, flowering vines, shrubs and trees provide beauty to your landscape. They offer a wide range of colors, textures, and forms to create vibrant seasonal displays. Grasses and sedges bring fascinating flowers and seed heads, as well as a yellow-orange fall color. Shrubs and trees also offer fall colors and berries that continue into the winter. When choosing a wide variety of plants, you will be guaranteed seasonal interest along with the attraction of colorful birds, butterflies, and insects.
- Storm Water Management
A few management practices you can use to help with storm water management include rain gardens, bioretention and wetland detention basins. These practices help slow down and absorb rainwater, which reduces the amount and velocity of storm water runoff while improving water quality. There are many native grasses and forbs that have very long and complex root systems. This massive grouping of roots serves to assist in the absorption of stormwater into the ground. It is then there to refill aquifers, which are vital in keeping a base flow in streams.
- Erosion Control
The main source of water pollution is siltation, which is the process where water becomes dirty due to fine mineral particles in the water. By using plants with strong, deep roots instead of turf, rock, or concrete, you are helping to reduce soil loss. Plants hold the soil, absorb the water, and reduce the flow of water over the surface. Using native plants instead of turf is an effective way to help control erosion.
- Create Wildlife Habitat
When you have a native plant garden with a variety of trees, shrubs, perennials and grasses, you are providing food and shelter for insects, birds, amphibians, and mammals throughout the growing season. By leaving seed heads and plant structure throughout winter, you are giving continued food and shelter for a lot of creatures, as well as providing yourself opportunities to watch nature up close.
- Less Maintenance
Compared to lawns and mulched tree, shrub, and perennial plantings, landscapes that include the right native plants require less maintenance. They require less watering and they do not require chemical fertilizers or pesticides. Native plants that reduce maintenance have the following characteristics:
– Live for many decades
– Appealing most of the year
– Can handle a wide range of light and moisture conditions
– Grow into dense groupings to help eliminate weeds
Native plants have many great benefits that not only you can enjoy, but also provides positive results for the environment. If you are interested in planting native Missouri plants as a part of your landscape, contact St. Louis Select Landscaping at (314) 568-6550. Our experienced staff can help you decide which native plants would work best for you. Give us a call today!