October 6 2021
Plant native, shop local
Don’t put away your gardening tools as the weather begins to cool: Native trees and shrubs thrive when planted in the fall since they’ve adapted to our climate. Many of the trees’ natural changes, such as losing their leaves in autumn, ensure they enter dormancy before the coldest weather arrives and stay dormant until spring.
Additionally, fall planting can lead to excellent root growth because soil is still warm, and trees are no longer using energy on leaf, flower and seed production. Weeds and weather won’t be as much of a challenge, either.
Why: Native plants are adapted to the environment in which they grow, making them perfect food and shelter for local wildlife. Many native plants also are important to pollinators — animals and insects that cause plants to create fruit or seed — which is critical for both animals and people. Additionally, native plants help clean and filter water and air.
From a landscaping perspective, native plants are a beautiful addition to your greenspace and can save you time and money.
“Native plants aren’t care-free, but once they are acclimated and get through the first few years, they require minimal care,” said Meredith Cobb, MetroParks conservation supervisor.
What: Native trees, shrubs and perennial flowers are great options for fall planting. However, hold off until next spring or summer to plant native grasses, when they’ll be more successful.
Local nurseries usually have fall sales on native trees, shrubs and perennials to reduce their inventory. Flowering native perennials that put on a better show in summer may have already sold out of been cut back to overwinter, while blooming varieties will be on display but probably not on sale. Native perennials (forbs) with beautiful fall color include:
- Amsonia (Blue star)
- Heuchera Americana
Native trees with beautiful fall color include:
- Serviceberry (Amelanchier)
- Blackgum (Nyssa sylvatica)
- Dogwood (Cornus)
- Mapes (Acer)
- Sassafrass (Sassafras albidum)
Other attractive native trees and shrubs include pawpaw, buckeye, eastern red bud and oaks.
When: Plant as late as the first week of November. Native seeds need cold, wet conditions to germinate and can be planted through the winter. Learn how to plant natives.
Shop natives this weekend!
Native Plant Sale at the 2nd Street Market
Sunday, Oct. 10, from 11 AM to 3 PM
Bring the natural heritage of Ohio to your back yard or greenspace by visiting the Market’s 2021 Native Plant Sale. Local growers from Deeply Rooted Landscapes, Down Nature’s Path Natives and T will sell a variety of plant starts that can be added to your landscape to help provide habitat for local wildlife, including birds.