National Planting Day

Do your part! This fall, plan to plant native species at home or in your community. Join a volunteer effort to transform your community’s public places into beautiful spaces by participating in National Planting Day. Tell your friends and family about the importance of native species – and get them involved, too!

Keep America Bee-utiful!

National Planting Day will take place on Sept. 12, 2015, and beyond!

National Planting Day was created to celebrate the value and power of native species in restoring ecological balance to the environment while creating greener, more beautiful communities. With a national focus on Sept. 12, 2015, and with activities happening throughout the fall, Keep America Beautiful, its affiliates and its partners are mobilizing Americans to plant native species of trees, flowers, and plants.

Keep America Beautiful will again kick off National Planting Day in September 2015 as a fall initiative of the Great American Cleanup, the nation’s largest community improvement campaign.

This year, we’re asking National Planting Day 2015 participants to help "Keep America Bee-utiful."

In collaboration with dozens of conservation and gardening organizations nationwide, Keep America Beautiful is a founding member of the National Pollinator Garden Network and is part of a new national campaign — the Million Pollinator Garden Challenge. This campaign is in support of President Barack Obama's call to action to reverse the decline of pollinating insects, such as honeybees, native bees and monarch butterflies.

As a founding campaign partner and with prime planting season in the fall, Keep America Beautiful is encouraging its 600-plus affiliates nationwide and others participating in National Planting Day to "Keep America Bee-utiful" by planting pollinator gardens in public places and in their own beautiful spaces.

Register your National Planting Day event now to ensure your pollinator garden will "BEE Counted" as part of the Million Pollinator Garden Challenge.

Why Plant Natives?

Native species are losing ground to suburbanization, fragmented habitats, ornamental plants and invasive species. Yet we know that natives are critical to attracting specialized pollinators and insects, which in turn provide food for birds and ultimately many more animals up the food chain. Natives also provide habitat for wildlife. Natives are hardy, low maintenance and require less water than other ornamentals. A reliable reference website about native plants is American Beauties Native Plants.

What Can I Plant in My Part of the Country?

There are some fantastic online resources that can help you choose the right native species for your project and region. We recommend the Pollinator Partnership website that has eco-regional planting guides tailored to specific areas of the U.S. You can find out which eco-region you live in by entering your zip code. Plant Native features a state-by-state directory of native species, specialized nurseries, and local organizations.

Which Trees and Shrubs Provide the Best Food for Wildlife?

Not all plants are created equal. Some plants provide food and shelter for more insects than others. If you are trying to plant trees and shrubs that will harbor more insects for birds and other wildlife to eat, then see this chart to determine what to plant. It shows which native plants (by genus) provide more insects in order of importance.


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“Gardening with natives is no longer just a peripheral option – It is an important paradigm shift in our shaky relationship with the planet that sustains us, one that mainstream gardeners can no longer afford to ignore.”

- Douglas W. Tallamy, Professor and Chair of Entymology and Wildlife Ecology, University of Delaware

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