We worked a Green Show yesterday at the Central Florida Zoo. One of the attendees was with the Florida Native Plant Society
We were discussing the importance of planting native plant species in Florida whenever you can.
Here are some of the reasons the representative gave for this practice:
1."Native plant species are naturally adapted to the place they occur-the soils. climate, natural water regime, and surrounding plants, animals, insects, and other organisms."
This probably will mean from a cost standpoint less watering and fertilizing costs for the steward of these plants.
2."The native plants could cease to show dominance in an area if non native species are planted with disregard around the native species"
3.Buying native species will help the local growers. You should ask the store where you purchase your greenery where the seed stock is grown. You may be surprised how far away the actual growing takes place.
4.The interwoven state of nature is often disregarded by your average Florida family that goes to work in an office tower and returns to their climate controlled home. They go outside only on the weekends to do lawn maintenance. But as you may remember from school the bugs, the plants, the birds, and thankfully the humans are all in it together. If native plant species suffer, then the bugs and birds may suffer and eventually the humans as agriculture will suffer as well.
5.It is the right thing to do from a social responsibility standpoint. As the supposed top of the intelligence chain, humans have a duty to the other species to let them live.
Here are some good resources for more on planting Native Species in Florida:
Florida Wildflower Foundation
Association of Florida Native Nurseries
"Sustainable Gardening for Florida" a book by Ginny Stibolt