Texas Native Plant Week

The third week of October is Texas Native Plant Week.

Chile pequin Capsicum annuum
Red yucca, Hesperaloe parviflora
Full photo of Red yucca

If you’ve discovered the beauty and practicality of utilizing native plants–in Texas or elsewhere–every day is a celebration of native plants. Using native plants in home gardens is a no-brainer: they’re easy to grow, lovely, and fit where you live.

In spring:

Carolina jessamine, Gelsemium sempervirens
Spiderwort, Tradescantia sp.
Yellow columbine, Aquilegia chrysantha
Aquilegia sp. (hybrid of A. chrysantha and A. canadensis)

Or summer:

Drummond’s ruellia, Ruellia drummondiana
And a group of Drummond’s ruellia
Tropical sage, Salvia coccinea (White) with accompanying dragonfly
Purple coneflower, Echinacea purpurea with nectaring Funereal Duskywing, Erynnis funeralis
Yarrow, Achillea millefolium
(left to right) Purple coneflower, Zexmenia, Twistleaf yucca, Henry Duelberg sage, Globe mallow
Big red sage, Salvia pentstemonoides with Southern Carpenter bee, Xylocopa micans
Rock rose, Pavonia lasiopetala with resting Horsefly-like Carpenter bee, Xylocopa tabaniformis

In autumn:

Rock rose with nectaring Little Yellow, Pyrisitia lisa
Texas craglily, Echeandia texensis with accompanying Horsefly-like Carpenter bee
Gregg’s mistflower, Conoclinium greggii with nectaring Grey Hairstreak, Strymon melinus
Plateau goldeneye, Viguiera dentata, with honeybee

In winter:

Frostweed, Verbesina virginica after the first freeze of the season
Possumhaw holly, Ilex decidua

Whether its flowers–annuals and perennials–trees, groundcovers, or grasses, native plants exist and flourish in every region and all seasons. Native plants and seeds are readily available from many local nurseries and online sources. With native plants, your garden will be dynamic, reflecting your particular geography and imparting a sense of place. Additionally, native plants support native wildlife, and a garden is never so alive as when pollinators, birds, reptiles and mammals are at home.

14 thoughts on “Texas Native Plant Week

    • That’s funny about the craglily; today was the first time–first time EVER–that I was able to get a shot of the carpenter bee at the craglily. The bees really do a fly by with that plant and I just haven’t had much luck–until today!!

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  1. Tina all the native Texas plants I love. The red yucca and Purple coneflower are divine and the Carolina Jessamine, Spiderwort, Rock rose and craglily are wonderful. I love the Aquilegias, Big red sage and goldeneye. Possumhaw holly is charming. Tina you are absolutely right: native plants are essential to create an ecological ecosystem in a garden where everything will work by itself, animals of all kinds. Tina, you and your husband, stay safe and sound. Take good care of both of you. I wish you all the best. Very affectionate greetings from Margarita.

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  2. Some beautiful flowers there Tina. I have found that native plants often have beautiful colours and interesting flowers, and I can never understand why more people don’t plant natives in their gardens. They not only look lovely but help out the local bees and butterflies and other wildlife.

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  3. If I needed any proof that hummingbirds love Turk’s Cap, I found it at the Artist Boat on the west end of Galveston Island last Sunday. They’ve allowed things to get a little out of control there, no doubt because of reduced volunteer time, and the Turk’s Cap shrubs were huge. They were covered with hummingbirds, too. Apparently some of them decided to wait for a stronger front.

    There were huge spreads of blue mistflower, too. I finally found a way to tell the difference between blue and Gregg’s mistflower: the leaves. Yours are palmate, and the ones I found are triangular. I also learned that Gregg himself died because of a fall from his horse in 1850!

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    • I still have at least one hummingbird around and like what you’re seeing, it loves the Turk’s cap!

      Another difference between the two mistflowers is that the Blue is a darker color than the Gregg’s.

      Poor Gregg! I guess that probably wasn’t an uncommon way to go in those days.

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  4. I did not know that red yucca is from Texas. Actually, I did not know where it came from. It is a very useful plant for the chaparral climates here, but has become too popular at the expense of the species of Yucca.

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