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Old 02-15-2012, 05:00 PM   #1
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Flowering native plants for Zone 5


Hi,
I've just moved to Lafayette, Indiana from Portsmouth, VA. BIG change in climate!
Does anyone know some good native flowering plants for a sunny backyard for the Lafayette area?
I'd like to get a tulip tree, is that ok here? (I know, messy, but so pretty)
I really want to spruce up the yard this spring! and am excited that I'll be living somewhere where the heat and humidity won't destroy half of what I plant!

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Old 02-15-2012, 07:45 PM   #2
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Flowering native plants for Zone 5


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Originally Posted by Meenie50 View Post
Hi,
I've just moved to Lafayette, Indiana from Portsmouth, VA. BIG change in climate!
Does anyone know some good native flowering plants for a sunny backyard for the Lafayette area?
I'd like to get a tulip tree, is that ok here? (I know, messy, but so pretty)
I really want to spruce up the yard this spring! and am excited that I'll be living somewhere where the heat and humidity won't destroy half of what I plant!
Our neighbor has a tulip tree and we're in zone 4 (Iowa). I would think you'd be fine.

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Old 02-15-2012, 08:10 PM   #3
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Flowering native plants for Zone 5


Guess you have not spent a whole summer here yet.
Many times there's a whole weeks where it's well over 100 deg. and in the summer it's common to have 80 plus percent humity for months at a time.
I'd be checking with some local green houses not asking people here that could be from anyplace in the world.
Take a look around at your neighbors houses, what's growing well in there yards.
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Old 02-15-2012, 09:47 PM   #4
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Flowering native plants for Zone 5


Thanks cubula11!!
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Old 02-15-2012, 09:53 PM   #5
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Flowering native plants for Zone 5


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Guess you have not spent a whole summer here yet.
Many times there's a whole weeks where it's well over 100 deg. and in the summer it's common to have 80 plus percent humity for months at a time.
I'd be checking with some local green houses not asking people here that could be from anyplace in the world.
Take a look around at your neighbors houses, what's growing well in there yards.
Thanks Joe, your location says you're in Virginia, do you live in Indiana?
I just got here in January, but my husband has been here since last January2011. He's was giving me hallelujah's about the "so little humidity even when the temp is high, it just doesn't feel hot" all last summer so I hope that wasn't a fluke. He's also a midwest boy ( grew up near Chicago) and he couldn't wait to get away from the heat of the Virginia Coast.

I will, of course, be checking with some local nurseries as Spring approaches, just thought some gardeners from this neck of the woods might frequent this forum.
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Old 02-16-2012, 04:53 PM   #6
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Flowering native plants for Zone 5


Hey Meenie50- Purdue has a well respected horticulture department where you could get some great information on plants: http://www.hort.purdue.edu/ext/conhort.html
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Old 02-16-2012, 05:35 PM   #7
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Flowering native plants for Zone 5


I miss read your post and got it backwards. I thought you had moved to VA. My mistake.
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Old 02-22-2012, 10:59 AM   #8
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Flowering native plants for Zone 5


I would get a book on flowering trees to have a better shopping arsenal when you hit the nursery. A variety of magnolias will do well in the region and are a bit less messy than a tulip tree. Actually, if pruned and maintained, they are not that bad. Your library should have lots of books on native plants. You might ask them if the arborist puts out any publications. Ever since Dutch Elm wiped out entire tree populations, arborists have been aggressive about getting people to plant varieties of trees so not all are susceptible. The University of Indiana extension folks, or even the US Government bookstore may have free or dirt cheap native plant publications.

I would look for a variety of trees that will provide some color and interest all year long. Dogwoods are smaller but great around windows and there shapes can be beautiful in the winter. Use perspective in planning your landscape.

You know, just another suggestion? You might want to measure your yard and scale it to paper. This will come in so handy for many landscape things in your future. Like for instance a nice drip irrigation system? Some outdoor lighting? Tacky lawn ornaments are big in Indiana and Illinois (my faves are the ones representing animals no way native) and you should plan on many and positioning them so the greatest number of people can see them from the road or even hot air balloons. Having a scaled drawing with N indicated and your house and yard positioned to show the road in front of it will be helpful for this reason alone.

You can use graph paper or programs like Sweet Home 3D (free open source) will do nice looking scale drawings of yards even though originally intended for floorplans. There are lots of free plant symbol sets.

Welcome back to the Midwest or to it for the first time. People think I am crazy for leaving California but I never liked it much out there---25 years was enough already! I feel quite at home here. It has been mild this winter so the change in people will not be so dramatic but Spring is different here than in California. Not just the plants, but the people come alive again. Hard to explain and I know it sounds cliche but I much prefer four distinct seasons over 1.5-2. And I would much rather shovel snow than all the California bull****.

Not sure who lied to your face and told you not to expect heat and humidity here though? Midwest summers can be as sticky as anywhere but perhaps the Deep South. Last year, at least in Chicago, was magnificent though.

Last edited by user1007; 02-22-2012 at 11:08 AM.
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Old 02-25-2012, 12:19 PM   #9
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Flowering native plants for Zone 5


Go to a cool website Gardenshare.com

It's an interactive site and has groups, forums, etc. - people from various zones. You can get terrific garden ideas, post photos, join groups that you are interested in and get some get advice from master gardeners.

There are groups set up by zones and by garden types.
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Old 02-25-2012, 03:29 PM   #10
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Go to a cool website Gardenshare.com

It's an interactive site and has groups, forums, etc. - people from various zones. You can get terrific garden ideas, post photos, join groups that you are interested in and get some get advice from master gardeners.

There are groups set up by zones and by garden types.
Thanks so much for the great link to garden-share.com. It looks like a great place with lots of different groups. I'm excited to get started there :D

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