From purple coneflower to butterfly milkweed, Iowa is home to beautiful native prairie plants. These forbs and grasses not only look pretty, but also provide habitat for Iowa’s pollinators and songbirds. Enjoy all these species have to offer by planting your own! Whether you’re looking to start a native garden or a full-fledged landscape, the right seeds can make all the difference.
INHF thinks having not just native, but local seeds is important for planting. Local simply means seeds that are sourced as close as possible to where they will be planted. This allows for plants to grow in areas that are well suited to accommodate their needs.
Each seed has a specific genetic makeup that’s been shaped by weather patterns, soil differences and other factors. For example, a common milkweed seed harvested in Wisconsin and sown in Iowa will grow a little differently than a native Iowan milkweed plant — even though it’s the same species.
There are many opinions on how to define “local,” but INHF typically plants seeds that are sourced from within a 20-50 mile radius.
So where can you find local native seeds? Simply find a nearby seed dealer. Check out the locations listed under “Custom Seeding” here.
Questions? Contact Land Stewardship Specialist, Ryan Schmidt, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 515-288-1846 ext. 13.