Rent Shop Volunteer Join

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - October 12, 2005

From: Phillipsburg, NJ
Region: Northeast
Topic: Wildlife Gardens
Title: Native plants, wildlife hosts for small yard in New Jeersey
Answered by: Nan Hampton and Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

I live in New Jersey & am in the process of changing my yard over to native plants. My yard is very small & I currently have a Kousa dogwood tree that I want to replace with something native. I need something that won't get much larger than 10' high by 6'wide. I read that this type of dogwood can carry "anthracnose" so feel replacing it with native dogwood wouldn't be a good idea. I would like something that has flowers to attract butterflies & other insects & then produces a berry in the fall or winter for the birds. Serviceberry would be too large. I also don't have alot of room for male & female varieties. It would have well drained soil & full to partial sun most of the day. If you can be of any help I would really appreciate it.

ANSWER:

Here are several native shrubs found in New Jersey that meet your criteria—maximum height of about 10 feet, flowers that attract butterflies, and berries to feed birds and other wildlife:

1. Coastal serviceberry (Amelanchier obovalis) This is a low-growing serviceberry.
2. American strawberry-bush (Euonymus americana)
3. Black huckleberry (Gaylussacia baccata)
4. Spice bush (Lindera benzoin)
5. Fragrant sumac (Rhus aromatica)
6. Coral-berry (Symphoricarpos orbiculatus)
7. Highbush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum)
8. Maple-leaf viburnum (Viburnum acerifolium)

You can see these and other shrubs in "Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat and Conservation Landscape for the Chesapeake Bay Watershed" published by the National Park Service. Although New Jersey is not specifically in the watershed area, many of the plants described are also native to New Jersey.

You can also search for other native shrubs of New Jersey in the Native Plants Database by choosing Combination Search and specifying "Shrubs" under Habit and "New Jersey" under U. S. Distribution.
 

More Wildlife Gardens Questions

A list of bloom times for wildflowers in Michigan
July 03, 2013 - Hello, I am new to bee keeping and live in central Michigan. Can you tell me or do you know where I could find a list of the Michigan wild flower bloom times? This would be very helpful to me. Than...
view the full question and answer

Host plants for Painted Lady Butterflies (Vanessa cardui)
August 22, 2009 - I am looking for host plants for the Painted Lady Butterfly that I can plant in my school's (I am a teacher) native plant/butterfly garden. As part of the curriculum, each Fall our 2nd graders study ...
view the full question and answer

Host plants for American Painted Lady larvae in Ohio
June 25, 2009 - Need to know what plants to plant as host plants for American Painted lady butterflies have larve coming in mail in few days , live in Vermilion Ohio on the Lake Erie. Thank You for your knowledge Pa...
view the full question and answer

Hungry turtles trample pond in Houston Texas
October 17, 2011 - I have a very large back yard pond (actually, a former swimming pool) that's home to a bullfrog, four Red-eared slider turtles, and scads of gambusia (little mosquito eating fish). I'd like to add n...
view the full question and answer

Native plants to attract butterflies
October 18, 2007 - I'm a Texas A&M Wildlife and Ecology student working with a landowner in Bastrop County, Texas. As part of their Habitat Management Plan, they are hoping to enhance butterfly habitat on their proper...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.