Tuesday, September 29, 2009

native plants in the edible landscape

So you've been intrigued by the idea of using edibles in your home landscape. But you're conflicted because you are a savvy, modern gardener and know the benefits of using native plants in the home landscape. (Check out this UM Extension bulletin if you need a refresher.) Well, who's to say you can't do both? Native perennials intermixed with fruits, vegetables and annuals can add a lot to the Edible Landscape:
  • First, of course, they are well-suited to your particular location, if you've chosen plants properly.
  • They have few insect or disease problems.
  • They improve soil organic matter and soil structure.
  • They can help reduce/prevent runoff and erosion.
  • They generally require little maintenance.
  • They attract beneficial insects and provide food and shelter for birds and other small creatures.
  • They provide a reliable, permanent foundation for the garden.
  • They offer long-lasting color.
  • Lots of textures, heights and forms to choose from.
There are a few native plants in the edible landscape including Echinacea, Monarda and Rudbeckia, and I hope to incorporate more as the project progresses.

The Minnesota DNR is a great resource for Minnesota gardeners interested in working native plants into the landscape. There's also a nice book titled Landscaping with Native Plants of Minnesota by Lynn Steiner, in which you may find inspiration and information about many of the species native to the state. Here are a few other UM Extension sites that may be helpful:

1 comment:

  1. I love this section of the garden, you are able to see the plants that are native to the region to get ideas and inspiration.
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