Wild Seed Project tree background image
Wild Seed Project: Returning native plants to the Maine landscape
Black-eyed coneflower

HELLSTRIP PLANTINGS: Creating habitat in the space between the sidewalk and the curb

by Heather McCargo • April 10, 2018

Urban environments are dominated by pavement, the bane of most living things. One area ripe for community greening is the hellstrip—the narrow space between the sidewalk and street curb. Sometimes planted in grass, filled with weeds, mulch or simply bare . . . Read More »

Tree canopy

CREATING CANOPY: Plant a native tree to help bring forth a greener future

by Heather McCargo • January 16, 2018

Planting a native tree is a powerful act that directly benefits local wildlife, moderates ground temperature, and helps remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Since the dawn of agriculture, people have been cutting trees and replacing forests with farmland. More . . . Read More »

American Pelecinid Wasp Pelecinus polyturator

Wasps in the Garden Ecosystem

by Reeser Manley • November 29, 2017

I am intimidated by the bald-faced hornets that forage nectar from raspberry blossoms and the yellow jackets that swarm over ripe blueberries, having experienced the stings of both. Yet each has an important role in our local ecosystem and in . . . Read More »

New England Aster

The Beauty and Pollinator Benefits of Asters and Goldenrods

by Heather McCargo • September 13, 2017

Asters and goldenrods are some of New England’s most recognizable late season wildflowers. Asters range in colors from blue, purple, pink to white, and goldenrods have abundant yellow flower clusters. These two wildflower groups brighten and enliven the end of . . . Read More »

Forest with missing pieces

Invasive Plants and Maine’s Ecological Puzzle

by Gary Fish • July 31, 2017

What do plants like ‘Crimson King’ Norway maple, burning bush and Japanese barberry have in common? They are long-standing favorites in urban and suburban landscapes; they grow easily and they provide beautiful red or purple foliage all year long or . . . Read More »

Rose, coneflower, bee-balm, and milkweed ready for larger pots

Caring for your Native Seedlings

by Heather McCargo • July 1, 2017

How to grow them over the summer and plant into their permanent home in the fall You have successfully germinated some native seeds and have small pots or flats filled with baby plants. Now what do you do? I recommend . . . Read More »

Small flowering trees

Small Flowering Trees: A dozen native species for limited spaces

by Heather McCargo • May 11, 2017

A small tree can bring beauty and diversity into your yard while taking up very little space. One could be planted next to your doorway, on the edge of a driveway, in the narrow strip between the sidewalk and street, . . . Read More »

Angelica

NATIVE GREENS: Grow these delicious edible vegetables in your own back yard

by Heather McCargo • April 4, 2017

Spring is a great time to taste some of Maine’s native plants that have edible leaves and shoots. Below are species that can be planted in your home landscape, transforming your experience with native plants beyond their ornamental and wildlife . . . Read More »

buddleia

The Disconnect Between Garden Aesthetics and Local Ecology

by Curtis Jirsa • March 6, 2017

The horticulturist Alan Chadwick, according to his disciples, rebuked anyone caught weeding sow thistle (Sonchus) from his garden beds. “They’re all plants,” he once declared. “It’s just that, if a plant is growing where we don’t want it to grow, . . . Read More »

Groundcover

Native groundcovers for beauty and biodiversity at the ground level

by Heather McCargo • January 30, 2017

A groundcover is a low growing plant that fills in quickly to make a dense carpet of foliage. Once established, it will crowd out weeds, provide year round protection to the soil, and offer overwintering habitat for native fauna. Ideally, . . . Read More »

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