Choosing The Right Plant

By PSU EcoMerge Capstone - 10:23 PM

A key to successful urban naturalization is to know what species of plant will grow best in its surrounding environment and conditions. Many mistakes are made when it comes to choosing the right plant or tree to grow in the city landscape. Choosing the wrong species of plant could be detrimental to the rest of the surround vegetation by changing the soil, water consumption level, nutrients, structure, and overall function of the site.  Some plant species may even be considered as invasive species if planted in the wrong habitat. Invasive plants take over rapidly, change the soils richness, and they also spread quickly. Invasive plant species may also be carried over by surrounding wildlife. According to Portland, Oregon’s Bureau of Planning and Sustainability 2011 Plant List, they define invasive species as, “Species that spread at such a rate that they cause harm to human health, the environment, and /or the economy… They can deprive native invertebrates of food sources, disrupting the food chain for native wildlife.” This makes the process of urban naturalization even more important as the urban landscape depends on a knowledgeable public, routine maintenance, and restoration. Be sure to check out the full report: www.portlandoregon.gov/.

Also, check out this article by: The United States National Arboretum, they discuss and define invasive plants and they even offer a few solutions.

So what is being done?

A main starting point in the urban naturalization process is becoming informed with ones own cities native plant and tree species. By doing this, city planners, individuals, volunteers, along with many others will be able to know what each structure needs to function properly and to maximize that structures potential. The Nature Discovery Center and Portland Plant List of 2011 provide us with a list of the many benefits planting “Native Plants” has. Here is a summary.

Native Plants Provide:
  •            Improved environment
  •            Have adapted to local condition
  •       Saves time and money
  •       Improved air and water quality
  •       Reduces use of pesticides
  •       Ease of use
  •       Provide habitat and food for native wildlife
  •       Slowdown erosive forces
  •       Provides appealing landscape features




Also, be sure to check out The National Parks Service native plant project plan and information: http://www.nps.gov/plants/restore/pubs/intronatplant/planning.htm

As every city is different, so are its needs. Joins us today in creating a sustainable and eco-friendly environment.  

@Urbantrees_pdx | #Urbantrees_pdx 

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