Native Plants

Butterfly on Rudbeckia
Green butterfly on Black Eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta).
Photo taken on July 20, 2022 in hardiness zone 6b. ©2022, Elana Goren. All Rights Reserved.

Why plant natives? See the post, “Paradise in Your Own Backyard”  for a general explanation about how native plants will benefit both you and the wildlife in your garden. I will also be regularly posting plant favorites featured on the Flora Focus page. You’ll find specifics about each plant, including its uses in the landscape, growing requirements and benefits to the local wildlife. Posts are all accompanied by photos taken in my own garden and are timely since they depict plant and wildlife during the specific garden season of the post. This means that each plant, here in the Northeast, USA, is shown in its current state related to the date of the post. And that can be useful since it allows me to show you how the plants develop and change at different times of the year and how that works within the landscape.


Heart Log
The Secret Life of Dead Trees
Dead trees feed and house local wildlife. And as they decompose, they release nutrients into the soil that help the plants around them thrive.
Chokeberry and fallen Redbud leaves
Leave Them Be
Fallen leaves in autumn serve a very important purpose and should not be removed from garden beds if possible.
Little Bluestem in Autumn
Little Bluestem Gets a Standing Ovation
This colorful grass has beautiful colors which shine like no other grass I've seen. This tough, native grass makes a bold statement and is able to survive the harshest conditions.
Big Bluestem, Andropogon gerardii, among seed heads of NY Ironweed, Vernonia noveboracensis.
The Colors of Autumn Aren't All in the Trees
While it is tempting to look up and out over a canopy of trees changing colors in the fall, sometimes you'll find autumn jewels by looking down.
White Heath Aster and Bush Honeysuckle.
White Heath Aster 'Snow Flurry'
Snow in September? It almost seems like it with this adorable, creeping ‘Snow Flurry’ variety of White Heath Aster which forms a ground-covering mat which bursts with white daisy-like flowers.
Hummingbird confronts Monarch Butterfly on Milkweed flower. ©2022, Elana Goren. All Right Reserved.
Paradise in Your Own Backyard
Why plant natives? Bringing the beauty and glory of the great outdoors to your home is as easy as planting native plants.
Winterberry (Ilex verticulata)
As fall sets in the Northeast, there are shrubs that display beautiful colors that will last well into winter. One of the most spectacular of these is our native Winterberry.
Black Swallowtail on Cardinal Flower
Plants for a World of Drought
This summer has been extremely brutal for plants. Here in the Northeast, long-established and mature trees are dropping their leaves. But there are ways to help your garden.
Hummingbird at Cardinal Flower
Cardinal Flower
Hummingbirds can't resist this summer-flowering native. Cardinal Flower's bright red stalks rise above the native flower garden.