Native Plant Communities
Native plants evolved and grow in associations that are influenced by surrounding landscape conditions. The composition of these plant associations, or communities, is shaped by a variety of factors including soil type, soil moisture during the growing season, and light level. The definitions used in our trade list have been derived from the Chicago Wilderness Atlas of Biodiversity. Selecting plants that are commonly associated with the growing conditions that most closely approximate the conditions of your site will help guarantee the success of your installation.
The plant associates listed on the following pages for these ecosystems have been referenced/confirmed with Swink & Wilhelm’s, Plants of the Chicago Region 1994 Edition and illinoiswildflowers.info.
Plants of various wetland systems are included under the wet prairie category. Refer to these references for more specific ecosystem information.