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Explore Plants

Welcome to Explore Plants. Our goal is to assemble and disseminate information that will encourage the sustainable use and conservation of native wildflowers, plants and landscapes throughout North America. The Native Plant Information Network (NPIN) is designed to inform a broad audience ranging from members of the general public such as homeowners, wildflower enthusiasts, and gardeners to practicing professionals such as botanists, land managers, and government personnel.

You can dig a little deeper into NPIN history with the links below or start your native plant journey with the Explore Plants menu to the right.

NPIN Resources | NPIN Updates | NPIN Personnel | Link to NPIN | Support NPIN

About the Native Plant Information Network (NPIN)

Now, more than ever, there is a need to bridge the gap between people and the natural world, a need to foster understanding and appreciation of the plant world, and a need to provide local, regional, and national audiences with scientifically accurate resources about their native plant heritage. Since its inception in 1982, the Wildflower Center has fulfilled those needs beginning with a mail-order Clearinghouse and continuing with its modern-day equivalent, the Native Plant Information Network (NPIN) - the Wildflower Center's national web portal for native plant information and resources.

Become a Contributor

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is committed to developing a premier resource for native plant information in North America through continued growth of the Native Plant Information Network (NPIN). You can help us achieve our mission by contributing high-quality images and data to the Native Plant Information Network. Please contact Dr. Damon Waitt, Senior Botanist, Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center to discuss how you can help this project grow.

Regional Spotlight: Mid-Atlantic

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Native plant: Oxydendrum arboreum (Sourwood, Sorrel tree) Tree with conical or rounded crown of spreading branches, clusters of flowers recalling Lily-of-the-valley, and glossy foliage that turns red in autumn. Open-grown sourwood is pyramidal and branched to the ground. If grown in shadier situations, the deciduous tree develops a taller, more columnar crown on a limbless trunk. Mature height ranges from 30-70 ft. The deeply furrowed bark is gray, tinged with red. Small, white, lily-of-the-valley-like flowers hang in rows from 6-8 in. spikelets, appearing after the leaves are fully grown. Pale yellow fruit capsules are almost as showy as the flowers. These darken and remain well after leaf drop in fall. Sourwood leaves turn a brilliant, deep-red in early fall.
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Mr. Smarty Plants: What is an Exotic Species?
read the answer or search Mr. Smarty Plants

Supplier: Adkins Arboretum (Ridgely, MD) Dedicated to promoting the conservation and appreciation of plants native to the Delmarva peninsula. Large selection of native trees, shrubs and perennials.
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Organization: Wildlife Habitat Council (Silver Springs, MD)
WHEC is a non-profit, non-lobbying group of individuals, conservation organizations, and corporations dedicated to the enhancement and preservation of wildlife habitat.
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Book: "Attracting Birds: From the Prairies to the Atlantic" (New York, Crowell) Out of Print--Limited Availability
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