Native Garden – Buying Native Plants
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Native Garden – Buying Native Plants

November 19, 2019

I’m turning a small space into an insect and
bird-friendly native plant garden. Native plants have so many benefits over imported
ones, which you can learn about in part 1 of this series. But today, we have a design, we know which
plants we want, and all we need to do is go get them! How hard could it be? We started at the department store garden
center. Nothing was labeled as native. I guess that makes sense. They have big national supply chains and it’s
hard to make decisions about which plants go to which store. It probably also rises from our culture of
promoting certain plants. Plants like the petunia, with their big pretty
flowers and big leaves. But you know what else likes those big pretty
flowers? Caterpillars. So we apply insecticides to make sure that
insects don’t touch our plants and we apply water to make sure they can grow in places
that they wouldn’t naturally. All so we can match those magazines and TV
shows that we’ve seen, rather than creating a unique piece of art using the species that
are available to us. I think that says something about us as a
people, but I think it’s something that we can change! Okay, so let’s go get some native plants. Here’s a wild idea. Can we just go dig some up and put them in
our yard? Is that even legal? Yes, with a couple of very important caveats. One is that you need the permission of the
landowner, including if the landowner is the government. And also, you’re not allowed to disturb or
remove protected species. Is it a good idea though? No. And there’s two good reasons why. One is that if you’re digging up plants that
have flowers, they have just put so much energy into growing that flower that they might not
survive the transplanting process. Second, if you imagine a world where everybody
just goes out into the fields and digs up whatever they want to put in their own private
yards, that’s not a good world for plants OR people. So if we shouldn’t do it on a macro level,
we shouldn’t do it as individuals either. The good news is that there are LOTS of plant
nurseries dedicated to growing native plants. I had to do some digging to find a list in
my area. (Digging… haha) I found a list of native
plant suppliers including one right up the street. Unfortunately, they’re not open yet. So we found out HOW to buy native plants,
but have to wait a bit. I’ll post updates to social media, so you
can follow me on Twitter or Instagram @ BioBush. Links will be in the description. I’ll post an update video later in the season
once everything is established to let you know how things are working. So you can subscribe to know when that pops
up. Or you can dig through some other videos on
this channel.

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