encouraging native plants on property
I have a partially wooded property here in Takoma Park. I cleared out a lot of invasive thorny things and the car parts, burn piles and assorted trash I found after clearing out the property. What I want to do is let whatever is native assert itself as things grow back, while culling the english ivy and the like that is not native. in an ideal world, I'd like to find someone who could walk the .5 acre with me and point out what is native or not. Otherwise, any resources you could direct me to that would help me identify natives would be very handy. Thanks,
Montgomery County Maryland
You are welcome to attach photos of your plants and we will identify they for you--both natives and non-natives (including invasive plants.)
A wonderful resource to familiarize yourself with what is native in Maryland is the online publication, "Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat and Conservation Landscaping: Chesapeake Bay Watershed." It has photos of each plant, plus conditions in which it grows and what wildlife benefits from it.
Besides removing the invasive non-native plants, you may find that you want to help nature's natural succession along by planting some native plants. Try to find ones as close to the native species (not a weird variety) as you can. Ones grown from seeds or cuttings of Maryland plants are the best.
Invasive plants are so pervasive in Maryland that they will try to re-infest your property. We'll be glad to help you id what shows up. We are not staffed for home visits, but your local county Master Gardener program may have volunteers who are willing to do so. To contact them, click on the Master Gardener tab at the top of our homepage.