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Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jersey’s Coastal Plain Region
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Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jersey’s Coastal Plain Region

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Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jersey’s Coastal Plain Region

Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jersey’s Coastal Plain Region

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  • 1. Cape Atlantic Conservation District Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jersey’s Coastal Plain Region
  • 2. Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jersey’s Coastal Plain Region The use of native plant species at a school, in a park, oraround your home can be beneficial in many ways. Wildlife useplants for food and shelter, while you benefit from the beautythese plants and wildlife add to the landscape. The native plantsare readily accepted by wildlife but also are adapted to ourenvironmental conditions. They are adapted to our soilconditions, resistant to pests and once established require lessmaintenance. This guide provides information for native plant speciesbeneficial to wildlife of the Coastal Plain region of New Jersey.These plants can be used to help establish wildlife habitat areason your property. The plants are listed in the categories of trees,shrubs and herbaceous plants. In addition, environmentalparameters for the use of these plants are identified in terms ofsoil moisture conditions, light preference and plantcharacteristics. Most of the plants in this guide are readilyavailable from the nurseries and garden centers in this region. Page 1
  • 3. Several factors should be considered when designing yourwildlife habitat improvement. The first factor to consider iswhat kind of habitat you want to create. Certain plants arebetter suited for a bog or rain garden, while others thrive in anupland forest setting. So match the native plant environmentalpreferences to the soil moisture conditions of your site.Choosing plants that are well-adapted to your site’s soilcondition is important to their survival. An investigation of thesoil on-site can be conducted first by using your County SoilSurvey, and then by doing soil borings or soil pits. For aid inunderstanding the characteristics of soils, you may contact yourSoil Conservation District. The amount of sunshine or shade thatyour project area receives will affect thespecies of trees or shrubs that will surviveover the long term. Certain species of treesand shrubs have adapted to living under thecanopy of other trees; they are calledunderstory plants. Over the short term toomuch shade will affect the amount of flowering and ultimatelythe amount of fruit that a plant can provide for wildlife.Consider shade from existing trees, and shade from buildings.Also plan for shade that will be created when newly plantedtrees mature. Another major factor is how much space you have for yourwildlife habitat improvement. You can expand the space foryour wildlife habitat by layering canopy trees over understorytrees over shrubs. This structured diversity will attract morespecies of wildlife. You should plan for the mature height andspread of a tree or shrub to avoid plants overcrowding. As withany landscape design, you want to design your site to create aterraced appearance, and to expand the habitat opportunities forwildlife by placing shrubs in front of trees and herbaceousplants in front of shrubs. Page 2
  • 4. Native plants will flower various times of the year. Youcan choose plants that flower in your wildlife habitat area fromMarch to September, attracting larger numbers of butterflies,pollinators and hummingbirds. Since plants flower at differenttimes of the year, they bear fruit at different times of the year.Knowing when a plant will provide fruit will help you toprovide wildlife food supply for a longer period during the year.Some plants will hold their berries or seeds that sustainmigratory and overwintering species. Lastly, when creating your landscape plan for your wildlifehabitat improvement you will want to choose plants that arereadily available. Try to purchase locallygrow plants - they are adapted to localweather and site conditions of the coastalplain region. When purchasing yourplants, check the scientific name of theplant to ensure that you are purchasing anative species and not a non-nativecultivar. This guides contains a list of plantsthat are adapted to the region, and aremore pest tolerant, disease resistant and more drought tolerantthan non-indigenous plants. It is not a complete list of thenative plant species of New Jersey, but rather a list of those thatmay be best suited to help establish a wildlife habitat on yourproperty. The information in this guide has been collected fromvarious local, state, and federal government agencies, as well asprivate organizations. All photographs are from the US Fish &Wildlife Service, the USDA Natural Resources ConservationService, and the Cape Atlantic Conservation District. Page 3
  • 5. Cape Atlantic Conservation District Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jerseys Coastal Plain Trees Soil Moisture Name Conditions Light Height Spread Flower Fruit Fall Foliage USDA NRCS Atlantic White Cedar (Chamaecyparis March - April bluish, cone-like thyoides) Moist to Wet 60 - 80 20 - 30 greenish-brown maturing in fall evergreen USDA NRCS July - March Eastern Red Cedar March - April green to blue (Juniperus virginiana) Dry to Moist 40 - 50 10 - 20 red to purple cone-like evergreen American Holly* May - June Oct - March CACD (Ilex opaca) Moist to Wet 15 - 50 18 - 40 small white red berry evergreen Eastern White Pine May August - Oct CACD (Pinus strobus) Dry to Moist 75 - 100 50 - 75 yellow light brown cone evergreen USDA NRCS May Pitch Pine small red to brown cone (Pinus rigida) Dry to Wet 50 - 60 40 - 50 purple maturing in fall evergreen USDA NRCS reddish-brown Virginia Pine April cone maturing in (Pinus virginiana) Dry to Moist 30 - 40 20 - 30 yellow two years in Oct evergreen*understory species
  • 6. Cape Atlantic Conservation District Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jerseys Coastal Plain Trees Soil Moisture Name Conditions Light Height Spread Flower Fruit Fall Foliage USDA NRCS Sept - Oct Black Gum April - June blue-black fleshy (Nyssa sylvatica) Dry to Wet 30 - 75 20 - 50 greenish-white fruit red USDA NRCS Sept - Dec Flowering Dogwood* April - May red to orange (Cornus florida) Dry to Moist 20 - 50 20 - 50 large white berry scarlet red USDA NRCS April - May Sept - Oct Gray Birch green to brown small winged (Betula populifolia) Dry to Moist 20 - 40 15 - 30 catkin nutlet yellow Sept - Nov USDA NRCS yellowish to pale yellow-green Persimmon May - June orange large or reddish (Diospyros virginiana) Dry to Wet 30 - 60 20 - 30 small yellow berry purple March April USDA NRCS Red Maple yellow tinted to red wing-shaped (Acer rubrum) bright red samara Dry to Wet 40 - 75 25 - 50 orange to red USDA NRCS Sept - Oct Sassafras April dark blue yellow to (Sassafras albidum) Dry to Moist 20 - 50 20 - 30 yellow green berry-like crimson Shadbush, USDA NRCS Serviceberry* (Amelanchier April - May June - July canadensis) Moist to Wet 35 - 50 35 - 50 small white red to purple orange to red yellow US F&WS Sweetbay Magnolia* May - July Sept - Oct (semi- (Magnolia virginiana) Moist to Wet 12 - 30 12 - 30 white to cream red berry evergreen)*understory species
  • 7. Cape Atlantic Conservation District Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jerseys Coastal PlainTrees Soil Moisture Name Conditions Light Height Spread Flower Fruit Fall Foliage USDA NRCS Sept - Oct Chestnut Oak May - June yellow-green (Quercus prinus) Dry 40 - 80 40 - 60 yellowish acorn yellow-orange USDA NRCS May October Northern Red Oak light green green to brown red to (Quercus rubra) Dry to Moist 70 - 90 40 - 50 catkins acorn reddish-brown USDA NRCS October Southern Red Oak April - May orange brown (Quercus falcata) Dry to Moist 60 - 80 50 yellowish-greem acorn orange brown USDA NRCS October White Oak April - May chestnut brown brown to (Quercus alba) Dry to Moist 80 - 100 80 - 100 yellow acorn reddish-brown USDA NRCS Aug - Oct Willow Oak April - May greenish-brown yellow to (Quercus phellos) Moist to Wet 60 - 80 40 - 60 yellow acorn orange-red
  • 8. Cape Atlantic Conservation District Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jerseys Coastal PlainShrubs Soil Moisture Name Conditions Light Height Spread Flower Fruit Fall Foliage US F&WS Sept - Nov Arrowood Viburmun May - June blue to black (Viburmun dentatum) Dry to Wet 10 - 15 6 - 12 white berry reddish-purple USDA NRCS American Cranberrybush early June September (Viburnum trilobum) Moist 8 - 12 8 - 12 white red glossy red to purple US F&WS Cranberry June - July Sept - Nov (Vaccinium macrocarpon) Wet .5" - 1" 3 - 3 white to pink red berry purple to red Cape Atlantic Conservation Highbush Blueberry April - June July - Aug District (Vaccinium corymbosum) Dry to Wet 6 - 12 6 - 12 white blue berry red US F&WS Lowbush Blueberry May - June July - Aug (Vaccinium angustifolium) Dry to Moist 1 - 2 1 - 2 white blue berry red Cape Atlantic Conservation Inkberry Holly May - June Sept - March District (Ilex glabra) Dry to Wet 6 - 10 6 - 10 small white black berry evergreen USDA NRCS Oct - Dec yellow-green Winterberry Holly early June bright red with purple (Ilex verticillata) Moist to Wet 6 - 10 4 - 6 small white and glossy tinges
  • 9. Cape Atlantic Conservation District Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jerseys Coastal PlainShrubs Soil Moisture Name Conditions Light Height Spread Flower Fruit Fall Foliage Aug - Sept USDA NRCS Dry to Moist, purplish-black to Beach Plum Sandy April - June red to yellow (Prunus martima) Salt Tolerant 4 - 7 8 - 10 white fleshy yellow to gold Bearberry Dry April - May July - March RCE (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi) sandy 2" - 8" 2 - 6 white or pinkish bright red drupe evergreen US F&WS Mountain Laurel May - July May - June (Kalmia latifolia) Dry to Wet 12 - 20 12 - 20 white to pink brown capsules evergreen USDA NRCS March - April Sept - April Northern Bayberry Dry to Wet small waxy bluish (Morella pensylvanica) Salt Tolerant 5 - 10 5 - 10 yellow-green white berry bronze US F&WS Silky Dogwood May - June August orange-red (Cornus amomum) Moist to Wet 6 - 12 6 - 12 white blue berry to purple US F&WS Swamp Azalea May - Aug Aug - March yellow-orange (Rhododendron viscosum) Moist to Wet 6 - 10 6 - 12 white to pink brown capsules to purple July - Aug yellow-green US F&WS Sweet Pepperbush numerous small Sept - Feb to golden (Clethra ainifolia) Moist to Wet 5 - 8 4 - 6 white brown capsules brown Oct - Nov US F&WS Witch-hazel Sept - Dec tan brown (Hamamelis virginiana) Dry to Moist 15 - 30 20 - 30 small yellow capsules yellow
  • 10. Cape Atlantic Conservation District Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jerseys Coastal PlainHerbaceous Soil MoisturePlants & Grasses Name Conditions Light Plant Size Flower Notes USDA NRCS Bee Balm July - Sept (Monarda didyma) Moist to Wet 2 - 5 red tuffs minty aroma USDA NRCS June - Sept Big Bluestem red, blue, brown, & moderate salt (Andropogon gerardii) Dry to Moist 2 - 6.5 yellow tolerance USDA NRCS June - Oct Black-eyed Susan yellow to orange with most common (Rudbeckia hirta) Dry to Moist 1 - 3.5 black eye American wildflower USDA NRCS Aug - Oct Blue Lobelian blue to violet flowers crowded on (Lobelia siphilitica) Moist to Wet 1 - 5 fluffy appearance upper stem USDA NRCS Blue Mistflower (Conoclinium July - Oct coelestinum) Dry to Wet 1 - 3.5 blue to purple can spread quickly USDA NRCS Bluejoint Reedgrass June - Aug (Calamagrostis 1.5 - 5 purple/ tan to candensis) Moist to Wet 0.5-1 spread blue/green attracts waterfowl USDA NRCS Boneset July - Oct (Eupatorium white perfoliatum) Moist to Wet 1 - 5 small, fuzzy clusters popular herb
  • 11. Cape Atlantic Conservation District Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jerseys Coastal PlainHerbaceous Soil MoisturePlants & Grasses Name Conditions Light Plant Size Flower Notes USDA NRCS Brachen Fern June - Aug reproduction by (Pteridium aquilinum) Dry to Wet 1.5 - 6 green spores USDA NRCS Aug - Nov not recommended to Broom Sedge yellow to reddish mix with cool season (Andropogon virginicus) Dry to Wet 1 - 3 brown grasses transplant seedlings, USDA NRCS not taproot Butterfly Weed May - July easy to grow from (Asclepias tuberosa) Dry to moist 1 - 3 yellow to orange seeds USDA NRCS Cardinal Flower 2 - 4 July - Oct long bloom time but (Lobelia cardinalis) Moist to Wet 0.5-1 spread red must be reseeded USDA NRCS March - May Cinnamon Fern reddish brown produces separate (Osmunda cinnamomea) Moist to Wet 2 - 5 wooly appearance fertile & sterile fronds July - Sept US F&WS Clematis 6 - 20 white (Clematis virginiana) Dry to Moist 0.5-1 spread small flower fragrant flowers USDA NRCS tubular flower with a Foxglove Beard Tongue June - Aug tuff of small hairs (Penstemon digitalis) Dry to moist 2 - 5 white to light purple along the stamen
  • 12. Cape Atlantic Conservation District Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jerseys Coastal PlainHerbaceous Soil MoisturePlants & Grasses Name Conditions Light Plant Size Flower Notes USDA NRCS Fox Sedge June - Aug (Carex vulpinoidea) Wet 0.5 - 3.5 green high wildlife value USDA NRCS June - Sept flowers close at night Fragrant Waterlilly white to pink needs a pond at least (Nymphaea odorata) Wet (Emergent) 1 - 4 floating plant 1 foot deep USDA NRCS Golden Heather 4" - 8" May - July low growing, (Hudsonia ericoides) Dry 3 spread yellow mat forming plant USDA NRCS stem juice is a Jewelweed July - Oct remedy for poison (Impatiens capensis) Moist to Wet 3 - 5 yellow to orange ivy itching USDA NRCS Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium June - Dec good ornamental scoparium) Dry 2 - 4 green to reddish tan grass USDA NRCS New England Aster 1 - 6 Aug - Oct pinching may help (Aster novae-angliae) Moist 2-3 spread white to purple keep plant compact USDA NRCS New York Aster 1 - 4.5 July - Oct pinching may help (Aster novi-belgii) Moist to Wet 1-2.5 spread blue to violet keep plant compact
  • 13. Cape Atlantic Conservation District Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jerseys Coastal PlainHerbaceous Soil MoisturePlants & Grasses Name Conditions Light Plant Size Flower Notes USDA NRCS New York Ironweed Aug - Oct (Vernonia reddish-purple upright form adds noveboracesis) Moist to Wet 3.5 - 8 showy flower structure to garden USDA NRCS Hairy Beard Tongue June - July trumpet shape flower (Penstemon hirsutus) Moist 1 - 3 pink to purple with white lips USDA NRCS carnivorous Pitcher Plant May - Aug endangered- should (Sarracenia purpurea) Wet 0.5 - 2 red to purple not take from wild US F&WS Poverty Grass May - July thrives in unfertile (Danthonia spicata) Dry to Moist 0.5 - 2 green soils US F&WS Prickly Pear Cactus June - July (Opuntia humifusa) Dry 0.5 - 1 yellow edible fruit USDA NRCS Purple Coneflower April - Sept popular herb (Echinacea purpurea) Dry to Moist 2 - 5 lavender to purple good butterfly plant USDA NRCS deer resistant - needs Rose coreopsis 1 - 2 July - Sept deadheading to (Coreopsis rosea) Dry to Moist 4 spread white to pink maintain growth
  • 14. Cape Atlantic Conservation District Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jerseys Coastal PlainHerbaceous Soil MoisturePlants & Grasses Name Conditions Light Plant Size Flower Notes Seaside Goldenrod July - Nov thrives in coastal US F&WS (Solidago sempervirens) 1 - 6.5 yellow regions Dry to Moist USDA NRCS reproduction by Sensitive Fern May spores easily (Onoclea sensibilis) Moist to Wet 1 - 3.5 green transplanted USDA NRCS seeds have Shallow Sedge May - Oct interesting (Carex lurida) Wet 1 - 3.5 light green appearance USDA NRCS flower color great Slender Blue Flag May - June contrast to greens (Iris prismatica) Moist to Wet 1 - 3 blue to purple and yellows US F&WS Soft Rush June - Sept can be found in fresh (Juncus effusus) Moist to Wet 1 - 4 greenish brown & saltwater areas USDA NRCS Spotted Joe-Pye-Weed 2 - 6.5 July - Sept (Eupatorium maculatum) Moist` 3 spread pale to dark purple purple spotted stem USDA NRCS Spotted Horsemint June - Oct (Monarda punctata) Dry 0.5 - 3.5 yellow to purple minty aroma
  • 15. Cape Atlantic Conservation District Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat Improvement in New Jerseys Coastal PlainHerbaceous Soil MoisturePlants & Grasses Name Conditions Light Plant Size Flower Notes USDA NRCS carnivorous Sundew June - Sept endangered- should (Drosera filiformis) Wet 3" - 10" lavender to rose not take from wild USDA NRCS Swamp Milkweed 4 - 5 May - June primary species for (Asclepias incarnata) Moist to Wet 2-3 spread pink to red monarch butterflies July - Oct US F&WS Switchgrass green to brown to (Panicum virgatum) Dry to Wet 3 - 6 rose good erosion control USDA NRCS Tall Coneflower July - Sept large spacing (Rudbeckia laciniata) Moist to Wet 1.5 - 10 yellow with green eye between petals USDA NRCS Wild Bergmont June - Sept (Monarda fistulosa) Dry to Moist 1.5 - 5 pink to purple minty aroma USDA NRCS Wild Columbine April - July (Aquilegia canadensis) Dry to Moist 0.5 - 3 red to yellow showy flowers US F&WS Woolgrass Aug - Sept (Scirpus cyperinus) Moist to Wet 4 - 5 green to brown high wildlife value May - Oct US F&WS Yellow Spatterdock yellow common for show in (Nuphar lutea) Wet (Emergent) 1 - 1.5 floating plant water gardens
  • 16. For more information aboutour Wildlife Habitat Improvements Program, or other District programs please contact us at: 6260 Old Harding Highway Mays Landing, New Jersey 08330 Phone: (609) 625-3144 Fax: (609) 625-7360 Education Line: (609) 625-1517 Or visit our website: www.capeatlantic.org

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