Introduction to Native Plants in our Sale
For the purposes of this years sale, I have labeled plants as ‘native’ if they naturally occur in Massachusetts. I have tried to provide descriptions of a plant’s native range for all perennials, trees, shrubs and evergreens.
However the plants in this sale are not identified or sold as native genotypes, except where noted in the plant description. For more information about what “native genotypes” are, you can find a nice description here: https://www.canr.msu.edu/nativeplants/getting_started/choosing_plants
Regarding fruits, I have not tried to identify fruits as native, because they have been bred for specific traits that have changed them from their native genes. Although there are native blueberries, strawberries and raspberries, in Massachusetts, the selections here differ from those wild counterparts. Also the strawberries are developed from more European species. And, although apples are an important part of our local agricultural heritage, they are from Kazahkstan.
Native species are important for many reasons. One reason is species interdependence. Plants evolved with all the other organisms in their habitat and have ecological roles in nature. There are many birds, insects, butterflies and mammals that rely on native plants. To highlight these relationships, when I could, I included information about what organisms are supported by each native plant, a lot of this information comes from The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, https://www.wildflower.org.
You may see in the description “special value to native bees” and identification of larval hosts. This information comes from The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation
Thanks for reading,