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Native Plants For Oregon’S Willamette Valley
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Native Plants For Oregon’S Willamette Valley


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A show to introduce members of the public to selected native plants of Oregon's Willamette Valley that are good species for landscapes, gardens, and restoration projects.

A show to introduce members of the public to selected native plants of Oregon's Willamette Valley that are good species for landscapes, gardens, and restoration projects.

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  • 1. Native Plants for Oregon’s Willamette Valley
    Linda R McMahan, Ph.D.
    Botanist and Community Horticulturist
    Oregon State University Extension Service
  • 2. Why native plants?
    The most reliable species
    Different plants for different purposes
    Which species attract the wildlife you want to encourage and enjoy
    What You Might Like to Know
    Native camas, Camassia sp.
  • 3. Why Native Plants
    Native Plants are:
    Already adapted to our weather and soils
    Reminders of our natural surroundings
    Support for local insects, birds and other wildlife
    Beneficial for stream health
    Hardy and relatively disease free
    Western mock orange, Philadelphuslewesii
  • 4. Trees in the Landscape
    Grand fir, Abiesgrandis and western red cedar, Thujaplicata
  • 8. Oregon ash – Fraxinuslatifolia
  • 9. Oregon ash
    Tree to 80 ft
    Tolerates moist / seasonally wet soils
    Wildlife value:
    Nesting sites
  • 10. Oregon oak
  • 11. Oregon oak
    Tall, deciduous, slow-growing
    Fallen leaves can suppress weeds & work well in compost
    Cannot tolerate summer irrigation
  • 12. Bigleaf maple
    Acer macrophyllum
  • 13. Big Leaf MapleAcer macrophyllum
    Stately tree
    Use large leaves for weed suppression or compost
    Once established requires no added water, but can support a shady lawn
  • 14. Ponderosa pine – Pinus ponderosa
  • 15. Ponderosa pine
    Tall, but usually ok near structures
    Full sun
    Dry sites east of Cascades
    West of Cascades, the Willamette Valley form withstands wetter sites
  • 16. Western red cedar – Thuja plicata
  • 17. Western red cedar
    Grows near but not in water
    Sun, part sun
    Mature tree can be very tall
  • 18. Vine maple – Acer circinnatum
  • 19. Vine maple
    Graceful understory tree, prefers part shade
    Slow growing
    Readily available
  • 20. Osoberry(Indian plum) – Oemleriacerasiformis
  • 21. Osoberry
    Light shade
  • Shrubs in the Landscape
    Red flowering currant, Ribessanguineum
  • 29. Mock Orange
  • 30. Mock orange
    o Fragrant,
    good nectar
    o Fast grower,
    o Sun, part
    o Butterfly host
  • 31. Nootka Rose – Rosa nutkana
  • 32. Nootka rose
    Full sun in drier areas
    Bank stabilizer, spreads underground
    Flowers provide nectar, hips food for wildlife
  • 33. Oregon grape – Berberis aquifolium
  • 34. Oregon grape
    Evergreen, forms colonies
    Berries and nectar support wildlife
    State flower of Oregon
    Widely available
  • 35. Blue elderberry – Sambucusmexicana
  • 36. Blue elderberry
    Tall, multi-stalked
    Sun, part sun
    Average to dry site
    White, flat-topped flower clusters
    Blue berries feed wildlife
  • 37. Red flowering currant – Ribes sanguineum
  • 38. Red flowering currant
    Blooms Feb/Mar
    Shade/part-sun, banks and drier areas
    Fast growing, readily available
    Drupes in late summer for birds
    Hummingbird pollinated
  • 39. Red osier dogwood – Cornus sericea
  • 40. Red osier dogwood
    Occurs naturally along streams but tolerates drier conditions
    Full to part sun
    Red winter twigs
    Host for native butterflies
    Look for local plants
  • 41. Snowberry - Symphoricarpusalbus
  • 42. Snowberry
    Spreads to stabilize banks
    Spreads to increase cover
    Bluish, soft foliage
    Fruits provide food through the winter
  • 43. Groundcovers and Herbaceous Plants in the Landscape
    Garden interest
    Protection for compaction by rain
    Hiding places for small creatures
    Helps prevent erosion
    Ladyfern and oxalis
  • 44. Sword fern – Polystichummunitum
  • 45. Sword fern
    Part or full shade
    One of the best plants for bank stabilization
    Great landscape ornamental
    Easy to find
    Easy to transplant and relocate
  • 46. Wild strawberries – Fragaria—3 native species
    Ground cover, spreading by runners
    Some species prefer shade; others sun
    Nectar for butterflies and other insects
    Butterfly caterpillar hosts
  • 47. Lady fern – Athyriumfelix-femina
    Unfurling spring fronds
  • 48. Lady Fern
    Prefers sun or part sun, good soil moisture
    Good for bank stabilization
    Winter deciduous
    Delicate soft foliage
    2-4 feet tall
  • 49. Wood sorrel – Oxalis oregana
  • 50. Wood sorrel
    Aggressive groundcover
    Full to part shade
    Once established, difficult to remove
    Will tolerate dry shade and go dormant in dry summers
  • 51. Camas - Camassia species
  • 52. Camas
    Commercially available bulb
    Spring blooming
    Needs spring moisture
    Needs summer dry
  • 53. Oregon iris – Iris tenax
  • 54. Oregon iris
    Reliable native iris, late spring blooms
    Tolerates drier sites
  • 55. Yellow monkey flower – Mimulus guttatus
  • 56. Yellow monkey flower
    Moist soil
    Spreads to become a ground cover
    Seeds provide food for wildlife
  • 57. In Summary
    Natives add or enhance wildlife habitat
    Look at all levels-trees shrubs, herbaceous plants and groundcovers
    Match the requirements of the plant to its new habitat
    Plant directly into native soil
    Wild bleeding heart, Dicentraformosa
  • 58. In Summary
    Take care of plants for the first 2-5 years after planting—some will require additional irrigation during this time
    Group plants with similar needs together
    Enjoy your new connection with Oregon native plants
    Wild bleeding heart, Dicentraformosa
  • 59. Thank You
    Photos by the author
    Presentation may be used freely for educational purposes
    For all other purposes, contact the author at
    Stream violet, Viola glabella