Responding to the Increased Demand for Native Plants
Donald R. Knezick
Over the last 10 years or so, a strong trend towards specifying native species has developed across the country. The origins of this trend date back to environmental movement of the 1970s. Today, practically every issue of the American Nurseryman has something about the subject. The push for native plants has understandably raised the ire of many growers who have spent entire careers
developing and producing hybrids and exotic species. But for more and more nurseries, the move towards native plants is providing new opportunities.
With numerous introduced species, such as purple loosestrife and phragmites, taking over thousands of acres of native habitat, environmental regulators have attempted to stem the tide by legislating against the used of non-native species. Even the White House has gotten involved as President Clinton issued a memorandum calling for "environmentally and economically beneficial landscaping" practices at federal facilities and federally funded projects.
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