people are starting to be more aware about the environmental impact
they are making in the world," Terc emphasizes. "Using
native plants can reduce the amount of water, fertilizers and
pesticides, while increasing the habitat available for native
He always uses
native plants as part of his planting pallet, emphasizing to the
homeowner why these varieties are a good fit for the project.
upfront cost of planting native species is the same as non-natives,
Terc stresses. "Any cost savings would be realized through
reduced watering and fertilization. And because the native plants are
hardy in our environment, they may need less frequent replacement than
those that are not as well-adapted," he continues.
plants can be easier to tend, Terc points out, adding that native
plants evolved to live in Wisconsinís climate of hot summers and
cold winters. "Some natives are much more drought-tolerant than
non-natives. Many of our native prairie species have deep root systems
that are able to access moisture deep underground even if the surface
is dry," he explains.
without a green thumb, a landscape designer can help select which
plants are appropriate for a given site. A professional such as Terc
understands a plantís preference for different light and moisture
levels that need to be taken into account.
because a plant is native does not mean that it is the right selection
everywhere," he warns. "A designer can also assist to make
sure the plants are appropriate aesthetically. Bloom time, texture and
color are all things that a landscape designer should look at to
select the right plants."
species best-suited for the area, he suggests flowering perennials,
including purple coneflower, blazing star and bee balm. For shrubs,
Terc likes arrowwood viburnum, red osier dogwood and bush honeysuckle.
A homeowner canít go wrong with such grasses as prairie dropseed,
little bluestem and switchgrass.
Terc says the
most important thing when selecting plants is to make sure you are
selecting a good fit for the conditions of the intended site. M