Ohio and National Native Plant Month

Ohio and National Native Plant Month

Ohio Native Plant Month and National Native Plant Month Graphic

April is Ohio Native Plant Month and, starting this year, National Native Plant Month! 

In July 2019, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine signed House Bill 59 of the 133 General Assembly into law, designating April as Ohio Native Plant Month. This made Ohio one of the country's first states to dedicate an entire month to our native plants. 

In 2021, Senators Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) introduced a resolution to declare April 2021 as National Native Plant Month. The resolution was based on unanimous consent on March 25th.

Three book displays featuring books on native gardening

The Piqua Public Library has celebrated native plants through a variety of programs. In 2019, we hosted a month-long Native Gardening Series in March. Our series has had to be postponed due to COVID-19, but we look forward to offering it in the future. As a safe alternative to our in-person speaker series, we provided a no-contact Native Plant of the Week program. A new native plant was highlighted every week, and patrons could take home free seedlings or seed packets. The program ran for 24 weeks, from August to February, and gave away 1,648 plants and seed packets.

Two photographs of the Native Plant of the Week program showing seedlings

The Piqua Seed Library includes many native Ohio plant species. Patrons can choose from various seeds (including vegetable, herb, and flower seeds) to borrow from the Piqua Seed Library. After enjoying the harvest, we ask that they save some seeds and return them to the Seed Library so we can share them with others. Seed saving creates a seed stock well-suited to the Miami Valley climate, the plants are more pest-resistant, and growers save money on their seeds and plants. Seed saving helps create a culture of sharing and community, too!

The Ohio Native Plant Month website has many resources for learning about native plants and how you can add them to your home garden and landscaping. 

Six library books about native gardening

The Piqua Public Library has some fantastic books on gardening with native plants in our collection. These are some of our favorites.

Native Gardening Guides

  • Bringing Nature Home: How You Can Sustain Wildlife with Native Plants, Updated and Expanded by Douglas W. Tallamy and Rick Darke
  • Go Native!: Gardening with Native Plants and Wildflowers in the Lower Midwest by Carolyn Harstad
  • Growing the Midwest Garden by Ed Lyon
  • Landscaping With Wildflowers and Native Plants by William Wilson
  • Lawn Gone!: Low-Maintenance, Sustainable, Attractive Alternatives for Your Yard by Pam Penick 
  • Native Plants of the Midwest: A Comprehensive Guide to the Best 500 Species for the Garden by Alan Branhagen 
  • Natural Landscaping: Gardening with Nature to Create a Backyard Paradise by Sally Roth 
  • Nature's Best Hope: A New Approach to Conservation That Starts in Your Yard by Douglas W. Tallamy  
  • The Garden Awakening: Designs to Nurture Our Land and Ourselves by Mary Reynolds 
  • The Humane Gardener: Nurturing a Backyard Habitat for Wildlife (How to Create a Sustainable and Ethical Garden that Promotes Native Wildlife, Plants, and Biodiversity) by Nancy Lawson   
  • The Living Landscape: Designing for Beauty and Biodiversity in the Home Garden by Rick Darke and Douglas W. Tallamy
  • The Natural Habitat Garden by Kenneth Druse
  • The Self-Sustaining Garden: A Gardener's Guide to Matrix Planting by Peter Thompson
  • The Water-Saving Garden: How to Grow a Gorgeous Garden with a Lot Less Water by Pam Penick  
  • Wildflowers in Your Garden: A Gardener's Guide by Viki Ferreniea and Carol Bolt

Native Gardening Philosophy + Natural History

  • A New Garden Ethic: Cultivating Defiant Compassion for an Uncertain Future by Benjamin Vogt
  • American Green: The Obsessive Quest for the Perfect Lawn by Ted Steinberg
  • Discovery and Renewal on Huffman Prairie: Where Aviation Took Wing by David Nolin
  • Rambunctious Garden: Saving Nature in a Post-Wild World by Emma Marris 
  • Thoreau's Garden by H. Peter Loewer and Henry David Thoreau

Gardening for Pollinators, Birds + Other Wildlife

  • 100 Plants to Feed the Bees: Provide a Healthy Habitat to Help Pollinators Thrive By Eric Lee-Mader and The Xerces Society
  • All-Season Backyard Birdwatcher (Quarry Book) by Marcus Schneck 
  • Attracting and Feeding Backyard Birds by Carol Frischmann
  • Attracting Birds and Butterflies (Home Grown Gardening) by Barbara Ellis
  • Attracting Birds to Your Backyard: 536 Ways To Turn Your Yard and Garden Into a Haven For Your Favorite Birds By Sally Roth
  • Bee Garden by Elke Schwarzer 
  • Bird and Butterfly Gardens (For Your Garden) by Warren Schultz 
  • Bird-by-Bird Gardening: The Ultimate Guide to Bringing in Your Favorite Birds--Year after Year by Sally Roth 
  • Birds in Your Backyard: A Bird Lover's Guide to Creating a Garden Sanctuary by Robert Dolezal 
  • Butterflies in the Backyard by Scott Shalaway  
  • Butterfly Gardening with Native Plants: How to Attract and Identify Butterflies by Christopher Kline
  • Garden Birds: How to Attract Birds to Your Garden by Noble S. Proctor
  • Gardening for Butterflies: How You Can Attract and Protect Beautiful, Beneficial Insects by Scott Black and The Xerces Society 
  • Gardening for the Birds by Thomas G. Barnes 
  • Nature's Gardens: Create a Haven for Birds, Butterflies-And Yourself! From Better Homes and Gardens 
  • Ortho's All About Attracting Hummingbirds and Butterflies (Ortho's All About Gardening) by Ortho
  • Pollinators of Native Plants: Attract, Observe and Identify Pollinators and Beneficial Insects with Native Plants by Heather N. Holm 
  • Songbirds in Your Garden by John K. Terres  
  • The Bee-Friendly Garden: Design an Abundant, Flower-Filled Yard that Nurtures Bees and Supports Biodiversity by Kate Frey, Gretchen LeBuhn 
  • The Butterfly Gardener's Guide (Brooklyn Botanic Garden All-Region Guide) by Claire Hagen Dole 
  • Wildlife in the Garden: How to Live in Harmony with Deer, Raccoons, Rabbits, Crows, and Other Pesky Creatures by Gene Logsdon