Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Support the plant database you love!

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

Saturday - September 04, 2010

From: Baltimore, MD
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Wildlife Gardens
Title: Literature on native plants and wildlife from Baltimore
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Can you tell me a good review of the literature on the relation between native plants and ecology; for example, a study might indicate how native plants support more birds or other wildlife.

ANSWER:

The best book we know of on that subject, and one that lives on a bookshelf in our desk, is Bringing Nature Home-How Native Plants Sustain Wildlife in Our Gardens by Douglas W. Tallamy, see Bibliography below. You could begin, for instance, with the 7 pages of references in the Tallamy book. 

Beyond that, we do not know of a review of literature on native plants and ecology; that doesn't mean there isn't one.  Perhaps you can compose one of your own. One possibility is to go to our Bibliography; click on the "Select by Subject" box, which is a drop-down menu.  Click on "wildlife" and you will get 82 titles, many of them with the word "ecosystem" in the title. 

Finally, we Googled on "native plants and wildlife" and got the usual pages and pages of reports, book reviews and so forth. Many of these are either scholarly papers, university extension releases or reviews of books written on the subject.  Of course, finding a review and finding an accurate, well-researched review are two different things. Good luck with that!

 

More Wildlife Gardens Questions

Is Franklinia alatamaha (Franklin tree) a major honeybee nectar source?
January 31, 2015 - Is the Franklinia tree a major nectar source for honeybees?
view the full question and answer

Wildflowers for bees in Missouri
July 13, 2013 - Mr. Smarty Plants, I just became a beekeeper and would like to plant wildflowers that are best for bees. The area to plant is partially shaded with clay soil. Do you have any suggestions?
view the full question and answer

Listing of plants matched to specific pollinators
July 01, 2014 - Could you refer me to a listing of plants matched to specific pollinators? I have completed the conversion of a local nature center garden to a pollinator garden with all natives. We hope to place ed...
view the full question and answer

Native Asclepias spp. for Monarchs in Connecticut
June 15, 2009 - Dear Mr. Smarty Pants, I live in Naugatuck Connecticut and I want to hatch my own monarch butterflies. I know that Monarchs like to hatch eggs on Milkweed plants. There are many types of milkweed p...
view the full question and answer

Native landscaping and wildlife gardening in Clifton, TX
November 29, 2004 - I am moving to Clifton, TX, and I will have an empty lot in the town along with my own home/lot. What kind of soil can I expect? I want to grow a wildflower site to just sit and enjoy and feed the a...
view the full question and answer

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