Native Plants

Native Plant List for Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi

This is a "starter" list of native plants for Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi. It is intended for residential or commercial landscapers who want to create attractive and varied native landscapes.

Georgia, Alabama & Mississippi - Trees

Common Name Scientific Name Sun Moisture Height     Comments
Winged Sumac Rhus coppalina F D-W 30' Pyramidal yellow-green flwr spike with red berries in fall
Pond Cypress Taxodium ascendens F-P W-A 45' Useful for soil stabilization at water edges
Bald Cypress Taxodium distichum F-P W-D 65-90' Reddish, peeling bark and rusty fall color
Winged Elm Ulmus alata F-P D 80' Corky wings often appear on its branches
Cedar Elm Ulmus crassifolia F-P W-A 80' Excellent street tree; late summer flowers, fall fruit
Red Maple Acer rubrum F W-D 50-75' Buds & young twigs are red; great foll color
Florida Maple Acer Saccharum F-P A 50-75' Excellent fall color; produces maple syrup
Indigo Bush Amorpha fruticosa F-P A-W 6-18' Fragrant compound foliage; 1/2" blue flwrs with orange
Paw Paw Asimina triloba P-S A 40' Unique fruit resembles & tastes like banana
River Birch Betula nigra F A-W 40-70' Modest yellow fall color; seed attracts birds
Ironwood Carpinus caroliniana P-S W-A 20-30' Good street tree; yellow, orange & scarlet fall color
Eastern Redbud Cercis canadensis F-S A-D 20-30' Clusters of pink flowers line branches in Apr
Pagoda Dogwood Cornus alternifolia P-S W-D 15-25' Clusters of white flowers turn to black berries
Swamp Dogwood Cornus stricta P-S W-A 30' White flowers late spring; blue fleshy fruit in summer
Parsley Hawthorne Crataegus marshallii P-F W-A 30' White flwr clusters bloom in early spring; scarlet fruits
Mayhaw Crataegus opaca F W-A 35' White flwr clusters (Feb); red fruit (Apr); thorny thicket
Titi Cyrilla racemiflora F-P W-A 30' White fragrant racemes (May-Jun); brown seeds persist
Silverbell Halesia diptera P-S A 35' Small white flowers hang from branches in early spring
Cassine Holly Ilex cassine F-P W-A 30' Abundant reddish-orange fruit produced in fall
Deciduous Holly Ilex decidua F A-W 25' Bright red display of red fruits (on fem.) eaten by birds
American Holly Ilex opaca F-P A-D 20-40' To ensure fruit one male is needed per 2-3 females
Yaupon Holly Ilex vomitoria F-P W-D 30' Fem. plants bear red fruit in fall that persists in winter
Sweetgum Liquidambar styraciflua F W-A 60-85' Brilliant scarlet-red to red-purple fall color
Tulip Tree Liriodendron tulipifera F A 70-90' Large tulip-like flowers are yellow, green, & orange
Southern Magnolia Magnolia grandiflora F-S A 100' Large white flwrs (spring) become scarlet seeds (sum.)
Sweet Bay Magnolia Magnolia virginiana P-F W-A 60' White fragrant flwrs (spring) become red seeds (sum.)
Southern Crabapple Malus angustifolia F-P D-A 30' Pink blooms (spring) become sm. apples that birds eat
Wax Myrtle Myrica cerifera F-P W-A 25' Small blue-grey fruits on females last through winter
Black Gum Nyssa sylvatica F A-D 30-60' Scarlet red autumn color
Swamp Bay Persea palustris F-P W-A 40' Wildlife eats fruit; leaves used from seasoning cuisine
Spruce Pine Pinus glabra F-P D-A 70' Short, twisted yellow-grn needles in pairs, oak-like bark
Longleaf Pine Pinus palustris F D-A 100'+ Long needles; slow, above ground growth when estab.
Cherry Laurel Prunus caroliniana F-P D 30' Small white flwrs (spring) become black fruits (fall)
Black Cherry Prunus serotina F-P D 50-80' Messy tree; sm.l edible berries in sumer attracts birds
White Oak Quercus alba F-P D 60-90' Brown, red, wine fall color; acorns attract birds/squirrels
Cherrybark Oak Quercus falcata F-S W-A 70-90' Flaky. reddish bark; good street tree
Swamp Chestnut Oak Quercus michauxii F-P W-A 80-95' Reliable red fall color contrast with light gray bark
Nuttall Oak Quercus nuttallii F-P W-A 70-85' Acorn production heaviest every 4-7 yrs; good shade
Willow Oak Quercus phellos F-S W-A 75-90' Beautiful shade tree; good street tree; high branching
Live Oak Quercus virginiana F-S D-A 70-95' Short thick trunk with picturesque horizontal branching

Georgia, Alabama & Mississippi - Shrubs

Common Name Scientific Name Sun Moisture Height     Comments
Bottlebrush Buckeye Aesculus parviflora F-P A 6-10' 6-24" spikes of flwrs; yell. fall color; attracts hummers
American Beautyberry Callicarpa americana F-P D-A 4-6' Sm. white-pink flwrs become berries that attract birds
Sweetshrub Calycanthus floridus F-S A 6-10' Interesting red or maroon strawberry scented flowers
Buttonbush Cephalanthus occidentalis F-P W 6-12' Fragrant flower clusters attract hummingbirds
Fringetree Chionanthus virginicus F-P D-A 20' White blooms (spring); fruit for wildlife; yellow fall color
Summersweet Clethra alnifolia F-P W-A 2-4' Ivory white fragrant blooms in summer
Buckwheat Tree Cliftonia monophylla F-P W-D 20' Terminal white flwr clusters (winter); persist until spring
Flowering Dogwood Cornus florida F-S D-A 25-30' White flowers in spring become bird-attracting berries
Witch Alder Fothergilla major F-P A 6-10' Showy, fragrant flowers in spring
Dwarf Huckleberry Gaylussacia dumosa F-P D-W 4' Small pink flowers become edible fruit; red fall color
Witch Hazel Hamamelis virginiana F-S A-D 8-20' Golden yellow flowers in fall; spectactular fall color
Oakleaf Hydrangea Hydrangea quercifolia P-S A 6' Oak-like leaves turn purple in fall; large white flowers
Bigleaf Gallberry Holly Ilex coriacea F-P W-D 15' Large black fruit used by wildlife; good border plant
Winterberry Holly Ilex verticillata F-P W-A 6-10' White flowers bloom in spring; berries persist in winter
Star Anise Illicium floridanum S-P D-A 8' Maroon starry flowers (spring); heavily scented leaves
Virginia Sweetspire Itea virginica F-P W-D 3-6' White blooms early-sum; red/orange/maroon fall color
Mountain Laurel Kalmia latifolia F-P D-W 5' Terminal white flower clusters (Apr-May); wine fall color
Leucothoe Leucothoe axillaris P-S D-W 3' Small fragrant white flwr clusters late winter-mid spring
Lyonia Lyonia lucida P-S D-A 3' Small, nodding bell-shaped white flowers in spring
American Sweet Olive Osmanthus americanus F-P D-A 20' Small, white lightly fragrant flowers in early spring
Yellow Native Azalea Rhododendron austrinum P-S D-A 12' Rich yellow or orange blooms for 3 weeks (Apr-May)
Honeysuckle Azalea Rhododendron canescens P-S D-A 12' Large, fragrant,flwr clusters form white-pink (Mar-Apr)
Summer Azalea Rhododendron serrulatum P-S A-W 15' Extremely fragrant white flowers (Jun-Aug)
Staghorn Sumac Rhus typhina F-P D-A 20' Red fall color; green flwr clusters become red fruit
Dwarf Palmetto Sabal minor F-S D-W 6' Tropical leaves; round black fruit persists into winter
Snowbell Styrax americanus F-P W-A 10' Numerous small white flowers (Apr-May)
Tree Huckleberry Vaccinium arboreum F-P D-A 20' Bell-shaped white flwrs; berries for wildlife, red fall color
Elliott's Blueberry Vaccinium elliottii F-P A-W 12' White flwrs (Mar-May); edible black fruit; red fall color
Arrow-wood Viburnum Viburnum dentatum F-P D-A 5-9' Flowers May-Jun; small blue-black berries in fall

Georgia, Alabama & Mississippi - Flowering Perennials

Common Name Scientific Name Sun Moisture Height     Comments
Doll's eyes Actaea alba P-S A 1-2.5' Sm. white flwrs (Apr-May); poisonous berries (Aug-Sep)
Red Baneberry Actaea rubra P-S A 2' 1/2" puffy white flowers become red poisonous berries
Columbine Aquilegia canadensis S-F A-D 24-36" Interesting red/yellow flowers attract hummingbirds
Jack-in-the-Pulpit Arisaema triphyllum P-S A 12+" Spathe appears Mar-May; red berries late sum-fall
Goat's Beard Aruncus dioicus P-S A 4-6' 6-10" plumes of small cream-colored flowers
Wild Ginger Asarum canadense S A 4-6" Evergreen groundcover, glossy heart-shaped leaves
Butterfly Weed Asclepia tuberosa F-P A 24-36" Clusters of brilliant orange flowers attract butterflies
Wild Hyacinth Camassia scilloides P-F A-D 1.5' Spike of light blue flowers; bulb
Blue Cohosh Caulophyllum thalictroides P-S A 1-2' Small yellow-green flowers, clusters of blue berries
Green n' Gold Chrysogonum virginianum F-P A 8" Large yellow flowers contrast green foliage spring-fall
Cohosh Cimifuga racemosa P-S A 3-8' Long slender clusters of white flowers in sum & fall
Spring Beauty Claytonia virginica P A 5-10" 5-petaled white flowers with pink veins bloom Feb-May
Bead Lily Clintonia umbellulata P-S A 24-36" Oval-shaped basal leaves; white flowers; ground cover
Pink Lady Slipper Cypripedium acaule P-F A 8-12" Distinctive red-streaked pink pouch; challenge to grow
Yellow Lady Slipper Cypripedium calceolus P-F A 18-24" Distinctive yellow pouch
Shooting Star Dodecathion meadia F-P D-A 10-16" Delicate white to pink petals, red & yellow centers
Mist Flower Eupatorium coelestinum F-P A 1-3' Dense clusters of blue flowers late summer until frost
Joe-Pye Weed Eupatorium purpurea F-P A 48-80" Large pink flowers attract butterflies in droves Aug-Sep
Queen of the Prairie Filipendula rubra F-P A 48-60" Showy large pink plumes Jun-Jul
Wild Strawberry Fragaria virginiana F-P A 6" Spring flowers become tasty fruit in early summer
Swamp Hibiscus Hibiscus coccineus F A 6-8' 6" wide red flwrs are striking against large bold leaves
Spider Lily Hymenocallis caroliniana P-F A 8-12" Beautiful unusual white flowers with six protrusions
Crested Iris Iris cristata F-P D-A 5-10" Pale lavender-blue crested flowers Apr-May
Red Flag Iris fulva F-P A 24-36" Large copper flwrs in late spring; attracts hummingbirds
Blazing Star Liatris spicata F A 2-5' Bright pink-purple stalks of interesting flowers
Yellow Bell Lily Lilium canadense F W-A 6' 3" yellow-orange flowers with dark spots; beautiful!
Turks Cap Lily Lilium superbum F-P A 4-6' Gorgeous orange & yellow flowers; AM sun, PM shade
Cardinal Flower Lobelia cardinalis F-P A 24-54" Terminal clusters of bright red 1.5" flowers in fall
Great Blue Lobelia Lobelia siphilitica F-P A 12-24" Elongated clusters pale to dark blue flowers; late sum
Coral Honeysuckle Lonicera sempervirens F-P A 15-25' Coral-red-yellow trumpet-shaped flwrs; berries for birds
Wild Lily of the Valley Maianthemum canadense P-S A 1-3" White flowers in spring; red berries in late summer
Virginia Bluebells Mertensia virginica F-S A 12-24" Pink flower buds open to sky blue flowers Mar-Apr
Forget-me-not Myosotis scorpiodes P A 4-24" Long flowering period of May-September
Allegheny Spurge Pachysandra procumbens P-S A 9-12" Mottled purple leaves; flowers are white with pink tinge
Woodland Phlox Phlox divartica F-S A 12-16" Covered with 1.5" soft pink/lavender flowers in spring
Jacob's Ladder Polemonium reptans S A 12-18" Terminal clusters of light blue, bell-shaped flowers, spr
Black-eyed Susan Rudbeckia hirta F-P A 24-36" 2-4" flower heads with 10-20 bright yellow petals
Oconee Bells Shortia galacifolia P-S A 3-6" Bell-shaped flower (early spr); evergreen ground cover
Fire Pink Silene virginica F-P D-A 10-16" Deep red star-like flowers draw hummingbirds Apr-May
Indian Pink Spigelia marilandica P-S A 1-2' Showy red tubular flowers with yellow on the inside
Celadine Poppy Stylophorum diphyllum S A 16-24" 2" wide lemon-yellow flowers
White Trillium Trillium grandiflora S-P A 8-16" Showy white flower turns pink, has 3 petals; 3 leaves
Blue Violet Viola papilionacea P-S A 6-12" Excellent ground cover with purple flowers in the spring
American Wisteria Wisteria frutescens F-P A 30' Large shrub vine with fragrant blue or pink flwr clusters

Georgia, Alabama & Mississippi -Perennial Ferns

Common Name Scientific Name Sun Moisture Height     Comments
Northern Maidenhair Adiantum pedatum P-S A 18-36" Airy fan-shaped green fronds, delicate black stems
Ebony Spleenwort Asplenium platyneuron P-S A 6-12" Small evergreen fern; dark green foliage; shiny stem
Lady Fern Athyrium felix-femina S A-W 18-24" Delicate lacy arching fronds, red stems when mature
Rattlesnake Fern Botrychium virginianum P-S A 2.5' Deciduous ferm retains primitive features; one frond
Hay-scented Fern Dennstaedia punctiloba P-S A 36" Fronds small like hay when crushed
Marginal Fern Dryopteris marginalis P-S A-W 18-24" Evergreen fern; gray-green, deeply cut leathery fronds
Ostrich Fern Matteuccia struthiopteris P A 3-4' Large, lustrous green arching fronds resemble a palm
Sensitive Fern Onoclea sensibilis F-P W 12-24" Deeply pinnate.leaves; poisonous to livestock
Cinnamon Fern Osmunda cinnamomea P-S A-W 24-48" Clusters of arching fronds; fertile fronds are brown
Royal Fern Osmunda regalis P A-W 2-6' Bi-pinnate blade; pinnea resemble locust tree leaves
Christmas Fern Polystichum acrostichoides P-S A 12-36" Stiff deep green fronds are once-pinnate
New York Fern Thelypteris noveboracensis P-S A-D 12-18" Light green foliage; fronds are tapered at both ends
Netted Chain Fern Woodwardia areolata P-S W-A 18-24" Broadly triangular, deeply cut sterile fronds; striking

Sun Exposure Soil Moisture Drought Tolerance
F = Full Sun W = Wet E = Excellent
P = Part Sun A = Average G = Good
S = Shade D = Dry M = Moderate
P = Poor