Native Prairie Plants

Monches Farm, LLC
5890 Monches Road
Colgate, Wisconsin
phone: 262-966-2787

New Prairie in June

New Prairie in August

Monches Goes Native!

We’ve re-organized our native plant section at The Farm and have a fine selection of native prairie plants to choose from right now. These plants are adapted to our Wisconsin climate and soil conditions and thrive with less pampering than most garden perennials.

Adding them to your garden now will give them the opportunity to get their roots established this season and get them off to a strong start next spring.

Especially nice right now are specimens of:

Bottle Gentian (Gentiana andrewsii ) – Called “Closed” or “Bottle” Gentian because the blue flowers, borne in clusters on 24” stems in late summer, appear  closed or bud-like even at maturity. A moist prairie native.

Vervain (Verbena hastata ) – Narrow spires of blue flowers rise atop 48”-60” stems in summer. Native to wet prairies, stream banks and marshes.

Golden Alexander (Zizia aurea ) – Yellow flower clusters on 36” stems in early summer over glossy divided foliage. Native to moist prairies and along streams.

Ironweed (Vernonia) – Named for its hardy constitution, this plant bears showy clusters of violet-purple flowers on very tall 4’-6’ stems in late summer.

Leadplant (Amorpha canescens) – A dry prairie plant with attractive narrow leaflets on shrubby stems to 36” tall. Dense purple-violet flower stalks in late spring/early summer. Needs to be established as a young plant as it forms a deep taproot that gives it great drought tolerance.

False Indigo (Baptisia) – This fabulous garden performer has been named the “Perennial Plant of the Year” for 2010 by the National Perennial Plant Association. It bears pea-like blue flowers in spring and forms a shrub-like presence in the garden, remaining attractive all season. The flowers are followed by black seed heads that can be left on the plant for winter interest. Baptisia forms a deep taproot once established so is highly drought tolerant.

Prairie Bush Clover (Lespedeza) - Silvery leaflets adorn slender stems 4’-5’ tall. Dense, rounded heads of creamy white flowers in late summer. A dry prairie native that prefers well drained, sandy soil.

Cardinal Flower (Lobelia cardinalis) – Spires of true cardinal-red flowers in summer. Native to stream banks and moist prairie areas. We also have Great Blue Lobelia (Lobelia siphilitica), which is a reliable garden performer in regular garden soil.

Prairie Blazing Star or Gayfeather (Liatris) – We have a number of species available, most of which are native to dry prairie areas. All produce stunning spires of purple flowers that the butterflies ADORE.

Butterfly Weed (Asclepias) – This genus is the sole food source for the immature Monarch Butterfly, so establishing some in your garden is very beneficial to these beautiful creatures. Pink flowering Marsh Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) is a vigorous grower that thrives in moist soil. Orange flowering Butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa) is slower to increase and requires sandy or fast draining soil. By special request, we even have a few pots this year of regular ol’ “Milkweed” (Asclepias syriaca) that we would only recommend planting in a naturized area as it is a colonizer.

Wild Petunia (Ruellia humilis) – Lavender colored tubular flowers, often penciled with darker purple lines on trailing 12”-18” stems in late summer. A beautiful plant that is native to the dry prairie. Late to break dormancy in spring, so mark the spot.

Rattlesnake Master (Eryngium yuccifolium ) – Bold strap-like leaves resemble Yucca, hence the common name. Chartreuse to white ball-like flower heads on sturdy stems rising 36”-48” above foliage. Native to prairies and open savannas.

Mountain Mint (Pycnanthemum ) – Highly fragrant, minty-scented foliage was used traditionally as a flavoring and medicinally. Flowers in late summer on the ends of upright 24”-36” stems. An adaptable plant found in both wet and dry prairie areas.

Showy Goldenrod (Solidago speciosa) – Yes, there are aggressive Goldenrods but this one is well-behaved, beautiful and garden worthy. Masses of elongated cylindrical clusters of bright yellow flowers in autumn on unbranched 24”-48” stems. Combines beautifully with fall Asters and prairie grasses. Dry prairie native.

Wild Senna (Cassia marilandica) – Attractive foliage plant with delicate leaflets and yellow flower clusters on tall 5’-6’ plants. Native to Midwestern prairie lands in moist areas.

Turtlehead (Chelone ) – Upright stems of narrow glossy leaves topped with clusters of turtle-head shaped flowers in autumn. Chelone glabra bears white flowers while Chelone lyonii bears pink flowers. Both thrive in moist soil.

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