The Big Easy Native Plant Guide by Susan Norris-Davis and Amelia Wiygul
This thoughtfully curated native plant guide was written specifically for the greater New Orleans area. It includes 47 species for both sun and shade, vetted for ease of growing, suitable for small city gardens. Beautifully illustrated and thoroughly researched.
There are several good native plant books for the southern Gulf states but none specific to urban southeast Louisiana. As the endpoint of a mighty river system and part of the coastal parishes that border the Gulf of Mexico , we are blessed with an abundance and diversity of nature that is not easily matched anywhere in North America
Our native plants provide food, shelter, beauty, and a sense of place in ways that non-native plants cannot. And yet, most yards and gardens are planted with a majority of ornamentals from other continents.This practices does not support our wider ecology, and it keeps us from engaging deeply with our landscape.
The plants chosen for this guide are locally available as of 2021, grow easily in the New Orleans area, and work well in small spaces. By no means is it a comprehensive list, but it is intended to serve as useful starting point for a home gardener. Growth habits and preference are indicted. Information is given which can help you solve a typical New Orleans yard challenge.
Susan Norris-Davis has a B.S. in Biology from Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Or, and a B.F.A. in Visual Arts from the University of New Orleans
Amelia Wiygul is a recent graduate of Tulane University with a B.A. in Environmental Studies and a B.A. in Studio Art.