Native plant lists

For your convenience our lists of native plant species are arranged according to general habitats. There are lists of plants for shade, medium soil moisture, and wetter soils as well as deer-resistant plants and ferns. All of the species are native to our location in northeastern Illinois.

Please note the benefits of native plants. They have adapted to:

  • Our climate — hot, dry summers — cold, windy winters;
  • Our soils when properly sited in clay, sand or loam;
  • Our hydrology when properly sited — dry, mesic or wet;
  • Native insects since they evolved together. Native plants can withstand insect chewing. They attract a wide variety of pollinators and gorgeous butterflies;
  • Local plant diseases since they evolved together.

Additionally, native plants are low-maintenance:

  • They rarely need irrigation after they are established. All but the most water-loving plants will even withstand drought.
  • They never need fertilizer because they have adapted to our soil fertility when properly placed.
  • They never need pesticides. Let the native insects feed undisturbed!

We have created permanent web  pages of local native plants organized by categories: Ferns, Forbs, Grasses and Sedges, Shrubs and Trees. You can filter by sun requirements, water requirements and color. Bookmark our native plant pages so you can find them when you need them.

Native Plant Lists Available for Download: