Essential Native Plants


By Abby Lapides

If you only have room for a few, these long-lived perennials are the ones to plant.

Butterfly Milkweed – Butterfly Milkweed, Asclepias tuberosa, serves as an adult nectar source and a larval food source of the Monarch butterfly. Brilliant tangerine orange or vibrant yellow flowers appear for most of the summer. Its showy seed pods are a lovely addition to dried flower arrangements. Easy to grow in sunny areas. 

Missouri Evening Primrose – 2018 Native of the Year. A cherished Missouri and Illinois native perennial, Missouri Evening Primrose, Oenthera marcrocarpa, boasts brilliant large yellow flowers. Low growing, sprawling plants 6-12″ tall produce huge 3-5″ cup-shaped bright yellow flowers. Flowers begin to appear in late spring and will sporadically continue into early fall.

Tall Garden Phlox – A loved Missouri native, Garden Phlox, Phlox paniculata, graces the garden with plump clusters of pink to lavender flowers that can grow 8″ across. Its fragrant flowers attract hummingbirds and butterflies and make excellent cut flowers. The magnificent flowers appear for months. Long-lived and easy to grow.

Lance Leaf Tickseed – 2021 Missouri Native Plant of the Year. Its flowers just keep coming and coming. A delightful, long lived Missouri and Illinois native perennial, Lance Leaf Tickseed, Coreopsis lanceolata, features bright yellow, daisy-like flowers from early summer into fall. Naturalizes easily. Tolerant of dry conditions and poor soil.

Find these and more native at Sugar Creek Gardens plant nursery located in Kirkwood, Missouri, and our website www.sugarcreekgardens.com