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Pennsylvania Native Plants @ Pitt

Your guide to open web and Pitt resources about the native plants of Pennsylvania and their many benefits.

The Pennsylvania Native Plant Guide provides resources to learn about native plants in Pennsylvania and acts as a starting point for native plant research. This guide supports the interests and studies of students in natural science fields, citizen scientists, and gardeners. Take time to explore the variety of resources within and beyond the University of Pittsburgh that examine the ecological benefit of planting natives and the various ways natives can be incorporated into gardens to create a more sustainable landscape.

Using this Guide

This guide uses side tab navigation to guide viewers throughout the pages. The guide starts with the basic definition of natives and an overview video of the benefits of gardening with native plants. As viewers move through the tabs, resources get more specific, spanning topics from native plant suggestions, to native plant initiatives at the University of Pittsburgh, to exploring natural resources throughout the City of Pittsburgh.

All recommended resources available through the University Library System will open the library's catalog, PittCat. Pitt affiliates can access and request books, journals, articles, media, and more through PittCat. If you want to learn how you can use PittCat to find even more resources, check out the following video:

What is a native plant?

The USDA defines a native plant as: Native plants are the indigenous terrestrial and aquatic species that have evolved and occur naturally in a particular region, ecosystem, and habitat. Species native to North America are generally recognized as those occurring on the continent prior to European settlement. They represent a number of different life forms, including conifer trees, hardwood trees and shrubs, grasses, forbs, and others.

Benefits of Native Plants

Check out the following video to learn about the benefits of native planting in Pennsylvania!
This video, organized by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, provides an excellent overview of native plants and how they support the ecosystem. Andrew Rohrbaugh from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Bureau of Forestry leads this introductory discussion about the benefits of planting Pennsylvania native plants.