About Choose Natives

ChooseNatives.org is wild for wildlife! We promote North American native plants over non-native alien plants in order to nurture healthy, balanced ecosystems and help restore natural habitats for all wildlife populations. We provide the curious with information on planting natives, advocating for critters, developing pesticide-free landscapes, and identifying invasive aliens. An equally essential part of our mission is to assist Mid-Atlantic region gardeners in locating native plant nurseries and plant sales. Gardeners have a choice when purchasing landscaping plants … we shout Choose Natives!

Wildlife habitat gardeners in their backyard.

When I began my gardening journey, I planted what every other homeowner found at their local garden center. I’d vaguely heard about native plants but didn’t understand why I should choose them. It was only after hearing entomologist Dr. Doug Tallamy speak that I learned I was doing it all wrong! I wasn’t supporting a single living thing with the introduced ornamental plants I was installing. Coddling lots of lawn didn’t help, either.

After years of spending copious amounts of time and money on plants that were truly just ornaments, on native plant cultivars that could spell trouble for wild plant populations, and also on native plants that were not locally indigenous, I finally understood. It’s quite simple: plant locally native species.

ChooseNatives was created to help you, dear constant steward, to avoid my mistakes. Take a peek at the various resources for building a healthy habitat. I hope to inspire you with photographs and an informative article now and again.

Thank you for visiting ChooseNatives.org. May your garden’s wildlife inhabitants delight you as much as they delight Marc and me.


In January 2013, we were awarded a certificate of appreciation from Monarch Watch.  The gardens around our home make up Waystation number 7580!  We were also approved as a Wildlife Sanctuary by Audubon at Home in April of 2013.

I am a member of the Virginia Native Plant Society, Potowmack Chapter, the Audubon Society of Northern Virginia  and the Xerces Society. I’m thrilled to have completed the Arlington Regional Master Naturalist* training in the spring of 2014.

Our property was highlighted by The Humane Gardener in 2017 and I was interviewed for Yes Magazine in 2020.

*The opinions expressed in my blog are my own and not necessarily those of the Virginia Master Naturalist Program.

This website would not exist without the support and love of my life partner, Marc.

Every positive action I take is fueled by Marc’s compassion. The earth and its inhabitants have lost a powerful advocate.

February 14, 1965 — October 7, 2017