We are bringing native to a whole new level….
We are proud to be growing Local Ecotype New England Native plants, and have been working diligently to identify, sustainably collect, and grow out some select New England species to be available for purchase to all our wholesale customers.
What is a local ecotype? This term distinguishes a species that is genetically adapted to a specific geographical region or environment. As you can imagine, this can get very specific. For simplicities sake, we are considering New England as our most local type, although there are many further distinct regions within the northeast.
A message from our founder, Peter van Berkum:
“Local ecotype, as we define it, is that population of any native plant actually growing in New England. We have been collecting seeds from native populations in New England. We have been establishing seed beds at the nursery from these plants, and we will be growing them out in pots so in 2022 we can offer these to you.”
Why Local ecotype? Well, many of the native plants that we grow also grow well in other parts of the country. Take New England Aster (Symphotrichium aka Aster nova-angliae) for example. It grows over three quarters of the USA. When we buy seed, we never know where that seed originated from. Since there is so much horticultural production in the mid-west, we assume a lot of the New England Aster seeds that we are buying are coming from plants grown in a prairie environment. Species vary from area to area, adapting to specific conditions. And a plant of the same species growing in the Midwest may have subtle differences from ones growing in New England. Since a vast majority of our customers are in New England, we would like to offer native plants that actually come from here.
These plants have a genetically diverse makeup and are well adapted for your garden and landscape, and the wildlife we adore. We think it is vital that native plants be incorporated into designs for a multitude of reasons:
- Adaptable landscapes
- Easy to grow
- Low maintenance
- Low fertilizer needs
- Encourages biodiversity and supports wildlife and pollinators
- Preserve and regenerate local diversity
- Tolerant to a changing environment
- Evolved to thrive in New England
- Non-invasive plants
- Integrate easily into established gardens & blend well with cultivars
A current offering of Local Ecotype New England Native plants can be found on our weekly availability or contact our office for more information.
Please check out these great resources for more information:
Grow Native Massachusetts: www.grownativemass.org/
Native Plant Trust: www.nativeplanttrust.org/