You will find, as have we, that information is scattered, sometimes contradictory, and can almost require a graduate degree to really understand! We’ve done our best to include the resources that seem most helpful. There are also many different schools of thought with their own passionate advocates, but no broad consensus. In the end, there probably isn’t any one right answer, but the answers that work for each of you. Floyd Native Plants is working to improve access to information for landowners seeking to restore ecosystems and regenerate biodiversity on their own properties, but it is a steep uphill climb and we’re still learning. We shall have to get there together!
- Bee, Butterfly & Hummingbird Gardens for Floyd, VA (1 page pretty flyer)
- Bee, Butterfly & Hummingbird Flowers for Floyd County, VA (more complete list)
- Native Shrubs & Trees for Floyd County, VA
- Keystone Species for Floyd County, VA
- Wildflower Wednesdays Plant Info
- Ernst Seed’s “Uplands and Meadow Sites Planting Guide” and more planting guides.
- Roundstone Seed’s “Six Basic Elementss for a Successful Native Grass and Forb Establishment”
The Nature Conservancy (TNC) The premier leader in conservation, regionally and globally.
Southeastern Grasslands Initiative. “Grassland loss is the single greatest conservation issue currently facing eastern North American biodiversity. If we want to reverse the tide of grassland biodiversity loss, our response must be rapid as well as unparalleled in its magnitude.” –Director Dr. Dwayne Estes. Read A Guide to Grasslands of the Mid-South.
Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). Provide technical expertise and conservation planning for farmers, ranchers and forest landowners wanting to make conservation improvements to their land. Virginia site. Area II (SWVA) Field office Christiansburg, 75 Hampton Blvd, Christiansburg, VA 24073, Phone: 540-381-4221, Fax: 540-381-4040
Virginia Dept of Conservation & Recreation (DCR). The state’s natural resource conservation agency. DCR protects natural habitat, parks, clean water, dams, open space and access to the outdoors. See the Natural Communities of Virginia Classification of Ecological Groups and Community Types.
Digital Atlas of Virginia Flora. Includes detailed native plant lists by county and native distribution maps.
Doug Tallamy’s Homegrown National Park. Call to action to private landownders to regenerate biodiversity and ecosystem function by planting native plants and removing invasive plants in places as small as small urban yards or as large as many acre private properties.
Knepp Wildland. 3,500 acre estate in West Sussex. Since 2001, the land – once intensively farmed – has been devoted to a pioneering rewilding project. Using grazing animals as the drivers of habitat creation, and with the restoration of dynamic, natural water courses, the project has seen extraordinary increases in wildlife. Extremely rare species like turtle doves, nightingales, peregrine falcons and purple emperor butterflies are now breeding here; and populations of more common species are rocketing. They host tours, retreats, educational classes, and sell the produce from the farm.
NatureServe. Research, mapping, standardization of names and definitions for species and ecosystems in North America. Conservation assessment, founding member of the IUCN Red List Partnership.
Virginia Forest Landowner Education Program. Science-based educational opportunities for new and experienced forest landowners, with Virginia Tech.
Plant Virginia Natives. regional native plant marketing partnership, initiated and coordinated by the Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program. Plant SWVA Virginia Natives, our local chapter is working on its native plant guide.
Virginia Native Plant Society. Founded in 1982 as the Virginia Wildflower Preservation Society, is a nonprofit organization of individuals who share an interest in Virginia’s native plants and habitats. New River Chapter.
Virginia Master Naturalists. The Virginia Master Naturalist Program is a statewide corps of volunteers providing education, outreach, and service dedicated to the beneficial management of natural resources and natural areas within their communities. Interested Virginians become Master Naturalists through training and volunteer service.
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. Inspiring the conservation of native plants through its internationally recognized sustainable gardens, education and outreach programs, and research projects. Native Plant Database @wildflower.org.
Floyd Flower Power. Local Floyd, VA initiative to encourage and help people to grow more flowers of all kinds (native and exotic ornamental), through installing plantings and helping to create local walking trails.
Wild Ones promotes environmentally friendly, sound landscaping to preserve biodiversity through the preservation, restoration, and establishment of native plant communities (no local chapter).
Ecological Health Network. Working at the intersection of human health & well-being and ecological restoration
Society for Ecological Restoration (SER). Global network of over 4,000 members who foster the exchange of knowledge and expertise among ecological restoration practitioners and scientists from diverse disciplines and backgrounds.
Heritage & Habitat assists landowners manage their land, encourages the sharing of great outdoor experiences, and is dedicated to preserving hunting and land ownership heritage. (Obviously, some limitations in broad ecological sensitivity).
Certified Burn Managers Program from VA Forestry prepares private landowners to safely conduct controlled burns, an important land management tool believed to have shaped ecosystem evolution in North America over many thousands of years.
The Mother Tree Project from Suzanne Simard, author of Finding the Mother Tree.
Wood Thrush Natives. (Local) Native plant nursery in Floyd, VA specializing in rare plants. Owner Ian Caton.
Mother’s Child Farm. (Local) Small native plant nursery in Floyd, VA grows and sells native plants at the Floyd Farmers Market. Owner Naomi Crews says of native plants that growing and sharing these is a devotional calling.
Spikenard Farms Honeybee Sanctuary. (Local) The sanctuary grows and sells native plants of special value to honeybees and other native pollinators during its once-monthly Open Days. Check the Calendar.
VA Forestry. Inexpensive high-volume bare root trees and shrubs.
Ernst Seeds (Meadville, PA) Industry leader in restoration seeds, seed mixes, and bioengineering materials. Many resources for prairie plantings.
Roundstone Seeds (Upton, KY) Industry leader in restoration seeds, seed mixes, and bioengineering materials. Many resources for prairie plantings.
Prairie Moon Nursery – highly respected Upper Midwest seed and plant source for individual species, but mixes are not recommended as they are filled with predominantly Midwestern species.
MidAtlantic Natives (Cobbs Creek, VA) Good selection of bare root, live stakes, and plugs.
Missouri Dept of Conservation – Extremely inexpensive bare root native plants.
Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants by Robin Wall Kimmerer
Finding the Mother Tree: Discovering the Wisdom of the Forest by Suzanne Simard
Nature’s Best Hope: A New Approach to Conservation that Starts in Your Yard by Douglas Tallamy
The Insect Crisis: The Fall of the Tiny Empires That Run the World by Oliver Milman
The Nature of Nature: Why We Need the Wild by Enric Sala
To Speak for the Trees: My Life’s Journey from Ancient Celtic Wisdom to a Healing Vision of the Forest by Diana Beresford-Kroeger
The Nature Conservancy’s Priority Landscapes: Conserving the Appalachians
The Nature Conservancy’s Clinch Valley Program
SEGI’s A Guide to Grasslands of the Mid-South by Dr. Dwaye Estes
Xerces Society’s How to Create Habitat for Pollinator Insects on Golf Courses
Flora of Virginia educational videos https://floraofvirginia.org/
Ecological Health Network’s Seed & Plant Supply Chain Program
Saving Islands in the Sky at the Appalachian Trail Conservancy – about restoring high elevation Red Cedar groves.
Creating Inviting Habitats from Virginia Cooperative Extension
Rewilding in Virginia from Jane Cundiff, Wild Garden Club, Floyd, VA
“Like Manna from God: The American Chestnut Trade in Southwestern Virginia,” by Ralph H. Lutts. Access online at JSTOR (You can get a free account by signing up and access to up to 100 articles a month).
“The Lord of the Forest: the American Chestnut” at Our State website
Managing Alternative Pollinators (free PDF) by Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education.
Digital Atlas of Flora of Virginia. List of Floyd County native plants.
iNaturalist – report observations as well as plant ID app
iPhone’s Siri has integrated plant ID in the built-in Photo app
Picture This – plant ID app
Call of the Forest Plant-A-Tree app (Diana Beresford-Kroeger)
Topo maps of Floyd https://www.topozone.com/virginia/floyd-va/
BONAP The Biota of North America Program http://bonap.net/
NRCS (USDA) Soil survey maps app
USDA’s Plant Database. (Old website, not always accessible).
Pine Ridge Nursery’s Native Plants, Healthy Planet podcast
- Kyle Larberger (Native Habitat Project) on Native Plants, Healthy Planet
- Enric Sala (Nature on Nature) on Native Plants, Healthy Planet
- And many other great episodes…
Nature at Your Door with Frank Taylor, Radford HS Biology teacher YouTube channel
Wild Plant Culture podcast
- Leslie Sauer of Ecological Restoration, Wild Plant Culture Episode 1 – once the awkward early minutes pass, this is a fascinating listen.