Native Plant Gardening

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Because native plants are adapted to the west coast conditions, they don’t 18 pacific rhododendronneed much care. They don’t easily succumb to pest problems or diseases and they are drought tolerant. That means no chemicals, no fertilizers, and no long hours of watering.

The native plants in the Langley Demonstration Garden bloom with intense colours and lush foliage. The goldenrod brings sunshine no matter what the weather and the red columbine are visited by butterflies and hummingbirds.

Everyone can become a lazy gardener! As an added bonus, native plants will provide food and shelter for wildlife. Birds will find shelter from the weather and ladybird beetles will explore your backyard.

The West Coast has an array of native plants to suit many different microclimates. Many Lower Mainland nurseries now carry a variety of native plants. Check out Gardening With Native Plants from Habitat Acquisition Trust for tips and suggestions for easy landscapes using native plants.

The following table is provided by Naturescape British Columbia and will help you choose the right plant for the right place.

Plants for Sunny Spots:

Common Name
Latin Name
Type
Height(M)
Features
Soil
Beaked hazelnut
Corylus cornuta
Small tree
1-4
Edible nuts
M WD
Flowering Currant
Ribes sanguineum
Shrub or hedge
1.5
Showy red flowers
D WD
Bitter cherry
Prunus emarginata
Small tree
8-12
White-pink flowers
M
Black hawthorn
Crataegus douglasii
Shrub or hedge
6-10
Yellow flowers
M WD
Blue elderberry
Sambucus cerulean
Shrub or hedge
3-6
Clusters of white flowers, berries
D M
Fireweed
Epilobium angustifolium
Wildflower1
.8-2
Pink flowers and red pods
M
Goldenrod
Solidagocanadensis
Wildflower
.3-2
Yellow flowers
M
Kinnikinnick
Actostaphylos uva-ursi
Ground cover
.05-.2
Pink-white flowers, evergreen
D
Mock orange
Philadlephus lewisii
Shrub
1-3
Showy, fragrant white flowers
D
Noding onion
Allium cernuum
Wildflower
.1-.2
White-pink flowers, foliage
D
Nootka rose
Rosanutkana
Shrub or hedge
3-5
Large pink flowers and rosehips
D F
Oceanspray
Holodsicus discolor
Shrub
3-5
White cascading clowers
D WD
Pacific ninebark
Physocarpus capitatus
Shrub
1-3
White flower clusters
M
Pearly everlasting
Anaphalis margaritacea
Wildflower
.3-1
Blooms last well into fall
D
Red columbine
Aquilegia Formosa
Wildflower
.6-1
Yellows to red flowers
M
Red flowering currant
Ribes sanguineum
Shrub or hedge
1.5
Showy red flowers
D WD
Red osier dogwood
Cornus stolonifera
Shrub
1-6
Red stems, red fall colour
D
Saskatoon
Amelanchier alnifolia
Shrub or hedge
3-7
Showy white flowers
D
Scouler’s willow
Salix scouleriana
Shrub or tree
2-12
Velvet twigs and catkins
D
Sitka mountain ash
Sorbus sitchensis
Shrub or hedge
1-4
White flower cluster, berries
M
Snowberry
Symphoricarpos albus
Shrub
.5-2
White berries in winter
D
Stonecrop
Sedum spathulifolium
Wildflower
.1-.2
Bright yellow flowers
D
Wild strawberry
Fragilaria virginiana
Wildflower
.1-.2
White flowers, edible berries
D

Plants for Partial Shade:

Common Name Latin Name Type Height(M) Features Soil
Cascara
Rhamnus purshiana
Tree
8-10
Attractive leaves and berries
M WD
Evergreen huckleberry
Vaccinium ovatum
Shrub
1-2
Pink flowers, evergreen, edible berries
False Solomon’s seal
Smilacina racemosa
Ground cover
.3-1
White fragrant flowers
M
Goat’s bear
Aruncus dioicus
Groundcover
1-2
Clusters of white flowers
Highbush cranberry
Viburnum opulus
Chrub or hedge
.5-3.5
white flowers, red-orange fruit
Inidan plum
Oemleria cerasiformis
Shrub
1-4
Flowers in early spring before leaves
Red elderberry
Sambucus racemosa
Shrub or hedge
3-6
White flowers
WD
Salal
Gaultheria shallon
Shrub
1-2
White flowers, evergreen leaves
WD
Sword fern
Polystichum munitum
Ground cover
1-1.5
Evergreen
M D
Twinflower
Linnaea borealis
Ground cover
.1
Fragrant flowers, glossy evergreen leaves
Trumpet honeysuckle
Lonicera ciliosa
Vine
3-6
Orange trumpet flowers
WD
Vine maple
Acer circinatum
Small tree
3-6
Yellow-red fall colour

Plants for Shady Woodlands:

Common Name
Latin Name
Type
Height(M)
Features
Soil
Black twinberry
Lonicera involucrata
Shrub or hedge
1-3
Yellow tubular flowers
M F
Bunchberry
Cornus canadensis
Wildflower
.05-.15
White flowers, berries
M O
Deer fern
Blechnum spicant
Groundcover
.2-.8
Evergreen
D
Dull Oregon grape
Mahonia nervosa
Groundcover
.4-.8
ellow flowers, evergreen
Flase lily-of-the-valley
Maianthemum dilatatum
Groundcover
.05-.1
Evergreen, spreads easily
M
Lady fern
Athyrium filix-femina
Groundcover
.8-1.5
Foliage
M O
Pacific bleeding heart
Dicentra Formosa
Wildflower
.2-.5
Pink flowers, spread easily
O
Piggy-back plant
Tolmiea menziesii
Groundcover
.4-.8
Brown-purple flowers
M
Red huckleberry
Vaccinium parvifolium
Shrub
1-3
Green twigs
D O
Tall fringecup
Tellima grandiflora
Groundcover
.4-.8
Fragrant flowers
M
Trailing yellow violet
Violet sempervirens
Wildflower
.05-.1
Yellow flowers, seed capsules
M
Wood fern
Dryopteris expansa
Groundcover
.8-1
Foliage
M

Soil Conditions:

  • D – Drought tolerant
  • M – Prefers moist soils
  • WD – Requires well-drained soils
  • F – Tolerates flooding
  • O – Prefers organic soils