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Native Plant Information

Looking to incorporate more Native Plants in your garden or landscape? Check out these two great resources to get started:

  • University of MD Extension: The U of M website includes detailed information on Maryland’s different regions and host plants for Maryland native bees. They also provide links to nurseries that provide native plants, garden design templates, maintenance plans and related information to make selecting, planting and maintaining your native plants easier. This is a great place to start using both their comprehensive information as well as the resources they link to for additional information.
  • Maryland Native Plant Society: has an extensive list of native plant nurseries in MD and surrounding locations.

Why Native Plants Matter The National Audubon society put’s it perfectly (Why Native Plants Matter | Audubon)

Restoring native plant habitat is vital to preserving biodiversity. By creating a native plant garden, each patch of habitat becomes part of a collective effort to nurture and sustain the living landscape for birds and other animals.

Over the past century, urbanization has taken intact, ecologically productive land and fragmented and transformed it with lawns and exotic ornamental plants. The continental U.S. lost a staggering 150 million acres of habitat and farmland to urban sprawl, and that trend isn’t slowing. The modern obsession with highly manicured “perfect” lawns alone has created a green, monoculture carpet across the country that covers over 40 million acres. The human-dominated landscape no longer supports functioning ecosystems, and the remaining isolated natural areas are not large enough to support wildlife.

Native plants are those that occur naturally in a region in which they evolved. They are the ecological basis upon which life depends, including birds and people. Without them and the insects that co-evolved with them, local birds cannot survive. For example, research by the entomologist Doug Tallamy has shown that native oak trees support over 500 species of caterpillars whereas ginkgos, a commonly planted landscape tree from Asia, host only 5 species of caterpillars. When it takes over 6,000 caterpillars to raise one brood of chickadees, that is a significant difference.

Unfortunately, most of the landscaping plants available in nurseries are alien species from other countries. These exotic plants not only sever the food web, but many have become invasive pests, outcompeting native species and degrading habitat in remaining natural areas.

Landscaping choices have meaningful effects on the populations of birds and the insects they need to survive. The bottom line is this—homeowners, landscapers, and local policy makers can benefit birds and other wildlife by simply selecting native plants when making their landscaping decisions.

Vegetable Garden Plant Guide

All information provided here is obtained from trial and error as well as the successes of local community gardeners, various internet resources, and information provided through our local University of Maryland Extension Grow it Eat it Program.  Any other references used in this guide are noted below.   Please select the picture of the vegetable you are interested in, the name and  information link (if available) will be displayed to provide you with more information.

Herb Garden Guide

What is that delicate aroma?  Why do these pests always show up on my vegetables?  My garden is so bland to the senses, what can I do?  As a community gardener, I’m sure you’ve asked yourself these questions, and others, a time or two.  Below is a list of herbs that are grown in our community gardens.  The data gathered on herbs for your community garden plot has shown both anecdotal and scientific evidence to have beneficial effects on other vegetable plants grown in their near vicinity.

Do you have a preferred herb that is not mentioned here?  Does your knowledge and experience tower over those folks on wiki?  If so, please contact us at the link above and let us know.  We will review and publish your herb giving you full credit!  A picture of the herb growing in your garden is a bonus!

Source data for the Havre de Grace Green Team Herb Gardening Page was compiled from our own community gardens and from other web sources listed below.


A Year in the Life of a Community Garden Plot

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