Native plants are plant species that grow naturally in the region in which they evolved. They are adapted to the climate and soil of a particular area, according to the U.S Forest Service. If you’re looking to attract birds and other wildlife to your yard, native plants are best because they are an excellent food source for all manner of animals, and they also provide shelter.
Native plants have other benefits as well. They do not require fertilizer and require fewer pesticides than our manicured lawns, they don’t need as much water because they have deep root systems and they help prevent soil erosion, according to the forest service. Native plants even reduce air pollution, both because they require less mowing and maintenance and because they remove carbon from the air through the process of carbon sequestration.
Filling your landscape with native plants instead of just blanketing it with grass will not only help attract birds to your yard, but also insects, including many bees and butterflies. Many of these insects are pollinators, the animals that visit flowers to drink their nectar and feed on pollen as well as transfer pollen from plant to plant in the process.
Pollinators are crucial to humans because much of our food supply is dependent on them. Scientists estimate that one of every three bites of food we eat is because of pollinators, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Many pollinators — including many species of bats, bees and birds — are threatened by habitat loss, disease, parasites and contaminants.
What To Plant