3 Pacific Northwest Plants for Autumn

This post was originally posted on Native Plants & Wildlife Gardens. A few months back, the thought of a flush of new green leaves was on my mind and I wrote 3 Pacific Northwest Plants for Winter. Now we’ve come full circle in the seasons and my thoughts turn to those leaves which are now turning such brilliant and spectacular colors. Autumn is by far my favorite time of year and the changing colors of the leaves certainly plays a large part in why this season is the one I look forward to most. I have many memories of visiting...

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Wildlife Plants:: Fireweed

Perhaps it's because the plant has bright, colorful flowers, when en masse, can look like a burning field, or simply because this plant commonly colonized areas which have been recently burned, the aptly named Fireweed is a beautiful plant with benefits for pollinators. Chamerion angustifolium is also known as Rosebay Willowherb and is a perennial growing and spreading from rhizome roots. It's fairly common and blooms during the summer reaching heights of 2-5 feet. It prefers disturbed sites, especially recent burns, as well as meadows and forests. The lance-shaped leaves are up to 8" in length and numerous on their climb...

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Native Plants and Wildlife Gardens Roundup

Following are the last four of my posts on the Native Plants & Wildlife Gardens blog. A Propagation Primer Propagation has been on my mind lately. We recently moved into a house with a very bare yard and although I brought all of my plants from our apartment balcony, they hardly make a dent in the yard. I recently visited the local native plant sale and despite spending a hundred dollars, the plants are also not going to make much of an impact. I recently wrote aboutmethods for collecting native plants, which is a great way to acquire hard to find...

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Wildlife Plants:: Lavender

There are few other plants so closely associated with scent than Lavender. The purple flowers and gray/green foliage is unmistakable and found in gardens around the world. The various forms can grow from ground high up to waist high and it is used and appreciated by both humans and wildlife. Lavandula (more commonly known as Lavender) is in the mint family and the genus contains a complicated taxonomy with 39 species and countless cultivars. Lavendula angustifolia is the most widely cultivated species. It was  historically found in the Old World growing from India throughout the Mediterranean region of Africa and southern Europe....

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Stinging Nettle Poster

In honor of Be Nice to Nettles Week in the U.K., here is a poster highlighting the benefits of Stinging Nettles. I plan to make more of these posters in the future. For more information about this plant, see Wildlife Plant:: Stinging Nettle.

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Wildlife Plant:: Stinging Nettle

Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica) may be considered a painful weed by most, but it is a complicated plant with many hidden virtues ranging from a valuable wildlife plant to making beer.  While most people are well aware of the evils of Stinging Nettle, not many are familiar with the good. The complexities of the Stinging Nettle start with its history. It's a native to North America, but it's also a native to Europe as well as northern Africa and parts of Asia. There are currently five recognized subspecies of Urtica dioica. A perennial, this plant grows all spring and summer long. In...

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