Enhance Your Landscaping With Native Florida Plants

The diversity of plants available for landscaping in Florida is wide and varied. This is thanks to the Sunshine State’s range of temperatures, terrain, and growing zones. Lush with beautiful blooming flowers, shrubs, and trees, Florida is also known for its unique abundance of greenery.

Are you starting to think about what you may like to add or change about your home’s landscaping this spring? Below are some examples of our showiest native flowers, shrubs, and trees in the state, listed by growing zone. 

North Florida

Flower: Black-Eyed Susan

These drought-resistant wildflowers range in color from yellow to orange to red, attracting butterflies to your garden. They do well in most soil types and thrive in Florida’s coastal landscape. With full sun and moderate watering, these perennials are durable and easy to grow. 

Shrub: Beautyberry

Birds love this striking plant with clusters of dazzling purple fruits. In the spring and summer, the plant is covered with light lavender or pink flowers that turn into fruits in the fall. It can be planted at any time of the year, is drought-tolerant, and can take full sun or partial shade. 

Tree: Chickasaw Plum

This small, quick-growing tree is perfect for small spaces, typically growing six to 12 feet tall. It attracts plenty of pollinators, and its clusters of white flowers bloom in the spring, then grow into tart plums to enjoy. It requires low maintenance and is pest- and disease-resistant. 

Central Florida

Flower: Gerbera Daisies

These colorful semi-evergreen perennials show off large rosette blooms atop straight tubular stems. They love sun and well-drained soil, and are great for flower beds, borders, or large patio pots. 

Shrub: Crepe Jasmine

Crepe jasmine is a rounded evergreen shrub with glossy green four– to eight-inch leaves and waxy white flowers that are highly fragrant at night. It can grow to about six feet tall and almost as wide. It thrives with a mix of sun and shade and is often used as a hedge, screen, or foundation planting.

Tree: Carolina Buckthorn

This small tree grows about 15 feet tall and thrives in full sun or shade. With its open canopy filled with an abundance of thin branches, it fulfills a variety of needs in the garden, and it produces red edible berries in the fall. It is filled with small green leaves in spring through summer and then puts on a colorful fall show as the foliage changes to red and orange.

South Florida

Flower: African Iris

This hardy iris originated in Africa and is a “cousin” of those typically found in gardens farther up north, but much better suited to the climate of southwest Florida. The yellow flowers with purple and orange accents appear on stalks that come up from long, grass-like leaves. When not in bloom, this low-maintenance plant remains green year-round. Plant mid-February-May.

Shrub: Crown of Thorns

A native of Madagascar, Crown of Thorns indeed has thorny stems, but it can be a great addition to your lawn because it blooms year-round and is quite drought tolerant. The flowers grow in clumps of either white, red, or pink blossoms at the end of slender stems. Plant mid-February-May. 

Tree: Gumbo-Limbo

The Gumbo-Limbo is native to south Florida and the Keys. Wind-tolerant, it stands up to hurricanes. With a copper-colored bark that has a peeling texture, this tree can grow up to 60 feet but is usually smaller in landscapes.

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