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Native Plants

Find Plants in the Fermilab Prairie

This web page has an interactive database of Fermilab's prairie plants. It includes pictures, descriptions, and care instructions for Illinois prairie plants.

Designed for students, this web page is a valuable educational tool. Students of all ages can search for plants found on the Fermilab grounds or all prarie plants.

Fermilab Prairie Plants Database

Regional Native Plant Species List

Plants for Full Sun

These plants thrive in a full day of sunshine. They'll fill your garden with color. Be sure to note each plant's requirements, as many can adapt to various soil and lighting conditions. Now sit back, relax, and watch your garden come to life.

  • Leadplant (Amorpha canescens)
  • Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardi)
  • Little Bluestem (Andropogon scoparius)
  • Marsh Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata)
  • Butterfly Milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa)
  • Smooth Blue Aster (Aster laevis)
  • New England Aster (Aster novae-angliae)
  • Side-Oats Grama (Bouteloua curtipendula)
  • New Jersey Tea (Ceanothus americanus)
  • Prairie Coreopsis (Coreopsis palmata)
  • Pale Purple Coneflower (Echinacea pallida)
  • Purple Lovegrass (Eragrostis spectabilis)
  • Rattlesnake Master (Eryngium yuccifolium)
  • Prairie Smoke (Geum triflorum)
  • Path Rush (Juncus tenuis)
  • Prairie Blazing Star (Liatris pycnostachya)
  • Wild Bergamot (Monarda fistulosa)
  • Switch Grass (Panicum virgatum)
  • Wild Quinine (Parthenium integrifolium)
  • Purple Prairie Clover (Petalostemum (Dalea) purpureum)
  • Prairie Phlox (Phlox pilosa)
  • False Dragonhead/Obedient Plant (Physostegia virginiana)
  • Shrubby Cinquefoil (Potentilla fruticosa)
  • Yellow (Gray-headed) Coneflower (Ratibida pinnata)
  • Compass Plant (Silphium laciniatum)
  • Showy Goldenrod (Solidago speciosa)
  • Indiangrass (Sorghastrum nutans)
  • Prairie Dropseed (Sporobolus heterolepis)
  • Spiderwort (Tradescantia ohiensis)
  • Ironweed (Vernonia fasciculata)
  • Culver's Root (Veronicastrum virginicum)

Plants for Partial Shade

Lovers of woodland edges, these plants will adapt to practically any partially-sunny or dappled shade area. Whether you choose to place these plants in the openings between trees or as a border, your garden will display a touch of grace and elegance no matter where you look.

  • Nodding Wild Onion (Allium cernuum)
  • Wild Columbine (Aquilegia Canadensis)
  • Short's Aster (Aster shortii)
  • Tall Bellflower (Campanula americana)
  • Purple-Sheathed Graceful Sedge (Carex gracillima)
  • (Midland) Shooting Star (Dodecatheon meadia)
  • Sweet Joe Pyeweed (Eupatorium purpureum)
  • Wild Geranium (Geranium maculatum)
  • Alumroot (Heuchera richardsonii)
  • Sweet (Vanilla) Grass (Hierochloe odorata)
  • Kalm's St. Johns Wort (Hypericum Kalmianum)
  • Bottlebrush Grass (Hystrix patula (Elymus hystrix))
  • Blue Flag Iris (Iris shrevei)
  • Cardinal Flower (Lobelia cardinalis)
  • Great Blue Lobelia (Lobelia siphilitica)
  • Foxglove Beardtongue (Penstemon digitalis)
  • Jacob's Ladder (Polemonium reptans)
  • Heartleaf Golden Alexander (Zizia aptera)

Plants for Shady Areas

These natural woodland residents are going to love your garden's shady areas. Most are early bloomers. They pack in as much light of springtime as possible before tree leaves fully open and canopies block out the rays of the sun.

  • Maidenhair Fern (Adiantum pedatum)
  • Jack-in-the-Pulpit (Arisaema triphyllum)
  • Side-Flowering Aster (Aster lateriflourus)
  • Lady Fern (Athyrium filix-femina)
  • Black Cohosh (Cimicifuga racemosa)
  • Virgin's Bower (Clematis virginiana)
  • Marginal Shield Fern (Leatherwood) (Dryopteris marginalis)
  • Virginia Waterleaf (Hydrophyllum virginica)
  • Virginia Bluebells (Mertensia virginica)
  • Cinnamon Fern (Osmunda cinnamomea)
  • Blue Phlox (Phlox divaricata)
  • May Apple (Podophyllum peltatum)
  • Blood Root (Sanguinaria canadensis)
  • False Solomons Seal (Smilacina racemosa)
  • Elm-leaved Goldenrod (Solidago ulmifolia)
  • Great White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum)
  • Prairie Trillium (Trillium recuvratum)