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Native Plants

Use native plants to beautify your property, lower your yard maintenance, and help the natural environment!

Native plants are those that historically and naturally occur in an area and tolerate the climate of the local environment. They also have important evolutionary relationships with the wildlife in that area. This page provides resources on planting with native plants in any type of landscape. Native plants have a multitude of environmental benefits including the following:

  • They provide food and habitat to native birds, mammals, and pollinators, like the monarch butterfly, which is in decline (click here to learn about the Town's efforts to help monarchs and here to learn about protecting all pollinators)
  • have extensive root systems that absorb polluted stormwater, especially when used in rain gardens
  • have the ability to take in carbon dioxide and other air pollutants
  • have low maintenance requirements
  • do not need fertilizer since they are adapted to our local soils
  • should not need irrigation once established  

Native Plant Residential Rebate Program 

Please check back spring 2024.

In partnership with the Long Island Native Plant Initiative and the Nassau County Soil and Water Conservation District (NCSWCD) and with funding from the NCSWCD, the Town is offering up to $350 rebates to residents (1 per household) for installing native plants in their home landscape. Existing applicants please see all resources on the program below. 

  Click HERE to view gardens created through the rebate program over the years to get inspiration for creating your own native plant garden!

 

Resource Documents

Preparing, Designing and Maintaining Your Native Plant Garden - learn what is required to plant native plants in your yard including how to assess your planting site, choose the right plants in your design, and maintain them after planting

Plant Native for the Planet- Watch this video and step into the world of native plants- learn why they are important, how to choose the right plants and get started planting a native garden as well as how to maintain the garden for years to come.

Native Plant List - a sortable list and description of appropriate native plant species from New York to plant in your landscape

Sample Garden Designs- This document provides templates for gardens that have a variety of light and soil moisture conditions: sun & dry, sun & moist, part-sun & dry, part-sun & moist, shade, and wet. Each garden shows plant species to use and alternates. Please keep in mind these templates are from Maryland and while most of the plant species are native to NY others may not be. To see to see if a plant is a NY native visit the NY Flora Atlas.

Where to Purchase Native Plants - provides a variety of local and online native plant retailers

Native Plants in the Town- describes the many native plant gardens the Town has created on its properties with photos of each garden and information on plant species. This includes the Town's Native Plant Trial Garden. Get inspiration for your own garden!

Rain Gardens are shallow depressions in the landscape that are used to capture stormwater from a gutter downspout or sloped area. Rain gardens have many benefits such as:

  • Pollution reduction: they filter out contaminants that rainwater can pick up, such as pesticides, oil, fertilizers and animal droppings, which can migrate into our nearby bays and harbors  

  • Aquifer replenishment: they allow water to absorb into the ground, which helps to recharge Long Island's groundwater sources where all of our drinking water comes from

  • Wildlife Habitat: A rain garden uses native plants

Rain Gardens a Design Guide by UConn - provides information on how to prepare your site and install a rain garden

Native Plant and Rain Garden Workshop Recordings- these workshops provide great information on creating and maintaining native plant and rain gardens.

Native Plant Gardening Workshop 2023

Rain Garden Workshop 2023

If you have any questions, please contact sustain@northhempsteadny.gov or call 311 (516-869-6311).