What is a Native Plant? A Legal and Ecological View
“A native plant species is one that occurs naturally in a particular habitat, ecosystem, or region of the United States and it’s Territories or Possessions, without direct of indirect human actions.”-Bureau of Land Management, Federal Native Plant Conservation Committee
A native plant is “a plant that has evolved in a given place over a period of time sufficient to develop complex and essential relationships with the physical environment and other organisms in a given ecological community.”-Doug Tallany, Professor of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware
For more information on definitions of Native, Non-native, Invasive, Weed, Noxious Weed and more, visit US Dept of Agriculture/Natural Resources Conservation Service.
The Benefits of Planting Natives:
- Low-maintenance – Native plants are adapted to Colorado soils and do not require soil amendments and fertilizers. They are also adapted to Colorado weather.
- Low-water – They are typically low-water plants, having adapted to the arid climate of Colorado. Once established, native plants require little supplemental irrigation.
- Ecologically valuable – Native plants provide food, shelter, and nesting areas for native bees, birds, butterflies, and other insects that are important for our food chain.
Learn More with These Resources:
Native Plants Lists for El Paso County
Other Resources to Get You Started
CSU Extension Resources
- Native Shrubs for Colorado Landscapes
- Native Trees for Colorado Landscapes
- Native Herbaceous Perennials for Colorado Landscapes