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For Your Garden - September 2012

Listen to the podcast of this information.

Native plants provide beauty as well as food and shelter for wildlife. Native species are adapted to the Illinois climate. They require little or no watering and are resistant to drought, insects and most diseases. Because they are perennials, you can welcome their presence year after year.

 FYGSep2012.jpg
purple prairie clover (Dalea purpurea)
Photo © 2012, Adele Hodde, Illinois Department of Natural Resources

 
Purple prairie clover grows in prairies statewide. It blooms from June through September. The plant grows to one to two feet in height. Leaves are alternate and compound with three to five leaflets. Each leaflet is thin (about 1/8 inch) and up to about one inch long. The flowers are produced in a spike at the tip of the stem. Flowers may be purple, rose, pink or red. These plants are beneficial to the garden by adding nitrogen to the soil.
 
Classification and taxonomy are based on Mohlenbrock, Robert H. 2014. Vascular flora of Illinois: A field guide. Fourth edition. Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale. 536 pp.
 

 Native Plant Information

 
 
For more information about native Illinois plants, including where to purchase them and planting guides, view the following publications at our publications page. You can access more information on the Schoolyard Habitat Action Grant page, too.
 
  • Prairie Establishment and Landscaping
  • Landscaping for Wildlife
  • Butterfly Gardens