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Native Plant Distribution Program

  Photo: Shoreline wildlife
 
Native plants also provide important wildlife habitat

Native plants are a beautiful addition to your property while providing habitat for local wildlife and pollinators and acting as a filter for rainwater runoff. Their root systems take hold easily, grow well, and adapt to changing conditions. As they mature, they build a complex web of roots within the soil, offering greater stability and erosion protection. You can enhance your property with native plants in a number of low-cost projects:

  • Shoreline naturalization
  • Rain gardens
  • Habitat creation
  • Pollinator gardens
  • Erosion control
  • Low-maintenance property beautification

The Native Plant Distribution Program provides native plants to community members in the Kawartha Watershed for the purposes of shoreline re-naturalization, habitat creation, erosion control, the establishment of rain gardens, and low-maintenance property beautification.

Which species should I plant? Species selection should be based on conditions of the planting sites, (e.g. sunny or shady, moist or dry, sandy or clay soil type) as well as your personal preference. Some species information is provided at the end of this page to help you decide what is best suited to your property and project. Additional research as to what will grow best on certain sites will result in greater success with your project and may lead you to other native species not on this list.

NATIVE PLANT DISTRIBUTION FORM

If you would like to speak with a Kawartha Conservation, Stewardship Technician before placing your order, please call 705.328.2271 ext 242 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

FREE Native Plants Available For Shoreline Naturalization!
Shoreline property owners may be eligible to receive $50 worth of native plants and shrubs through Kawartha Conservation for use in shoreline related projects, while quantities last!  In order to access this opportunity, contact a Kawartha Conservation Stewardship Technician to set up a site visit where we will assist in the development of a site-specific, project plan for the planting (705.328.2271 ext 242 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

The following species list is subject to change each year when the program order form is released:

 

Wild Flowers
Plant species Site Preferences Plant Characteristics Special Features

Black-eyed SusanBlack-eyed

Susan

(Rudbeckia hirta)

Full Sun to Partial Shade

Moist, Well Drained Soil

Perennial Wild Flower

Yellow Daisy-Like Flowers

Bloom from June to October

Part of the Sunflower Family

Grows 30-90 cm Tall

Attracts Butterflies and Supports Local Pollinators

Fall Bloom

Drought Resistant

Great as Cut Flowers

Spotted Joe-Pye weed

Spotted Joe-Pye weed

(Eupatorium maculatum)

Full Sun or Partial Shade

Moist Soil

Perennial Wild Flower

Pink-Purple Fuzzy Flowers in Flat-Topped Clusters

Bloom July to September

Grows 60-200 cm Tall

Attracts Butterflies and Other Small Pollinators

Fall Bloom

Pleasant Vanilla Scent

Excellent for erosion control

Red bergamot

Red bergamot

(Monarda didyma)

Partial to Full Shade

Moist Soil

Perennial Wild Flower

Bright Red Tubular Flowers, with Terminal Tufts atop a Square Stem

Bloom May to October

Grows 60-120 cm Tall

Especially Attractive to Hummingbirds as Well as Other Pollinators

Long Bloom Cycle

Leaves Have Minty Taste, Used in Teas and Herbal Medicines

Swamp milkweed

Swamp milkweed

(Asclepias incarnata)

Full Sun

Moist to Wet Soil

Clay to Loam

Perennial Wild Flower

Purplish-pink Flowers

Bloom June to August

Grows 30 to 150 cm Tall

Attractive to butterflies (monarch and queen butterfly larval host), bees, and other insects

White turtlehead

White turtlehead

(Chelone glabra)

Full Sun to     Partial Shade

Moist to Wet Soil (should not dry out)

Prefers more acidic soil

Perennial Wild Flower

White/Cream flowers

Blooms July to September

Grows 30-90 cm Tall

Attractive to butterflies, butterfly larvae, bumble bees

Unattractive to deer because of its bitterness

Grasses & Sedges
Plant species Site Preferences Plant Characteristics Special Features

Little bluestem

Little bluestem

(Schizachyrium scoparium)

Full Sun

Dry to normal sand and loam

Perennial Bunch Grass

Feathery appearance

Purple Seed Head with Blue-Green Stems

Fall Colour is Maroon/ Tan

Bloom From August to October

Grows 45-120 cm tall

Attracts birds and butterfly larvae

Drought Resistant

Deep Roots, Great for Erosion Control

Canada wild rye

Canada wild rye

(Elymus canadensis)

Full Sun to Partial Shade

Well Drained Soil

Perennial Bunch Grass

Oat-Like Arching Seed Head

Bloom From March to June

Flowers from July to September

Grows 1-2 m Tall

Consumed by Many Types of Birds

Quick Growing Grass

Deep Roots For Effective Erosion Control

Wide Range of Soil Conditions

Drought Resistant

Bottle brush grass

Bottle brush grass

(Elymus hystrix)

Full Sun to Partial Shade

Dry to Moist Sand to Loam Soil

Perennial Cold-Season Grass

Bristle-tipped Seeds Give the Effect of a Bottlebrush

White Upright Flowers in Spring

Bloom in July and August

Grows 80-120 cm Tall

Attracts Birds and Butterflies

Deep Roots For Effective Erosion Control

Wide Range of Soil Conditions

Drought Resistant

Bebb’s sedge

Bebb’s sedge

(Carex bebbii)

Full Sun to Partial Shade

Moist to Wet Clay to Loam Soil

Perennial Sedge

Blooms in June; seed heads form through August

Grows 20-90 cm Tall

Withstands Sustained Flooding


Shrubs
Plant species Site Preferences Plant Characteristics Special Features

New Jersey tea

New Jersey tea

(Ceanothus americanus)

Partial Shade, to Full Shade

Dry to Moist Sand to Loam Soil

Deciduous Perennial Shrub

Produces Tiny Upright Whitish Flowers That Occur in Oval Clusters

Bloom in March and April

Grows to 1 m Tall

Attracts Birds and Butterflies

Deep Roots For Effective Erosion Control

Extremely Adaptable to Poor Soil, Moisture and Sun Conditions

Drought Resistant

Dried Leaves Can Be Used For Tea

Red-osier dogwoodRed-osier dogwood

(Cornus stolonifera)

Full Sun to Partial Shade

Moist Soil

Deciduous Perennial Shrub

Bright Red Shiny Twigs, Maintain Colour During the Cold Season

Small White Flower Clusters, and Small White Fruit

Bloom March to May

Grows 1 m to 3 m

Attracts Butterflies

Deep Roots For Effective Erosion Control

Well Adapted to Grow Along Wet Waterfronts and Stream Banks

Trimming at the End of Season Encourages New Growth

Buttonbush

Buttonbush

(Cephalanthus occidentalis)

Full Sun to Partial Shade

Moist to Wet Clay or Loam Soil

Deciduous Perennial Shrub

Dense Spherical White to Pale-Pink Flower Clusters, Attractive Red Spherical Seed Heads, Many Branches, Yellow Fall Colour

Bloom June to September

Grows 1 m to 3 m tall

Attracts Songbirds, Hummingbirds and Butterflies

Beautiful and Unique Blooms

Deep Roots for Effective Erosion Control

Insect and Disease Resistant

Excellent for in Rain Gardens or on the Shoreline

Native plant resources

We can help

Knowledgeable staff can help you take action!

  • Not sure where to start? Schedule a free onsite consultation and receive personalized advice for enhancing your properties and protecting water quality.
  • For training opportunities and workshops, please see our events page for current listings.

Programs and Services

Access programs and services to help you take action:

Blue Canoe visit

 Blue Canoe Program

Get tips and advice on protecting your shoreline property and water quality

 

killarney demo thumb

 Shoreline Demonstration Sites

Visit a naturalized shoreline and see how you can improve your own

 

tree seedling purchase thumbnail

 Seedling Program

Purchase native trees, shrubs, and grasses for your projects 
 

 

shoreline protection thumbnail

 Shoreline Protection

Get free advice and information on protecting waterfronts from common shoreline issues

 

lakescugog thumb

 Scugog WATER Fund

Apply for a grant to help with projects on your property in Durham Region within the Kawartha Watershed

 

 NativePlants

 Native Plant Distribution Program

Learn more about the Native Plant Distribution Program.