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Native Shrubs

In the 1980's, as concern over invasive exotic species grew, the West Virginia Native Plant Society designed these fact sheets to promote the use of native shrubs in landscaping. The project was expanded to incorporate the wildlife values of the various shrubs so that those who desired to attract wildlife to their yards could use the information in planning their gardens.

But whether a gardener or a land planner, the importance of using native species is increasing. With 28% of the flora of West Virginia now being made up of non-native species, it is prudent to look at the use of native species to temper the introduction and spread of exotics. The impact of non-native invasive plant species on natural biological diversity has reduced available habitat for native species. In the worst cases, they radically altered the ecosystem processes, altered natural areas, and displaced native species altogether.

Many agencies and private landowners are now beginning to explore native alternatives for conservation purposes on public and private lands, and some West Virginia nurseries are selling varieties derived from WV communities to be sold as alternatives to exotic species.

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