NYC Resources311Office of the Mayor

The Greenbelt Native Plant Center (GNPC), a facility of the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation, is a 13–acre greenhouse, nursery, and seed bank complex located on Staten Island, NY.

Wildlife Gardens

Download the Wildlife Gardens Species List (PDF, 79 KB)

Butterfly and Moth Gardens

The following species are important larval hosts for caterpillars or nectar sources for butterflies and moths. These native plant species will attract native insects, maintaining the symbiotic relationship that is essential for the survival of both. For further information on the particular native butterfly, moth, or caterpillar species, consult the texts Butterflies of the East Coast: An Observer's Guide (2005) Cech and Tudor and Caterpillars of Eastern North America (2005) Wagner, David L., or the Lady Bird Johnson Wildlife Center webpage.

Trees/Shrubs

  • Acer rubrum– Red maple
  • Acer saccaharinum– Silver maple
  • Betula lenta– Black birch
  • Betula populifolia– Gray birch
  • Carpinus caroliniana– Hornbeam
  • Carya glabra– Pignut
  • Celtis occidentalis– Hackberry
  • Cephalanthus occidentalis– Buttonbush
  • Cornus florida– Flowering dogwood
  • Fagus grandiflora– American beech
  • Fraxinus americana– White ash
  • Ilex opaca– American holly
  • Kalmia angustifolia– Dwarf laurel
  • Kalmia latifolia– Mountain laurel
  • Liriodendron tulipifera– Tulip popular
  • Populus deltoides– Eastern cottonwood
  • Prunus serotina– Black cherry
  • Quercus alba– White oak
  • Quercus palustris– Pin oak
  • Quercus rubra– Red oak
  • Rhus aromatica– Fragrant sumac
  • Rhus copallinum– Winged sumac
  • Rhus glabra– Smooth sumac
  • Rhus typhina– Staghorn suman
  • Sassafras albidum– Sassafras
  • Vaccinium angustifolium– Lowbush blueberry
  • Vaccinium corymbosum– Highbush blueberry
  • Vaccinium pallidum– Blue Ridge blueberry

Herbs

  • Aquilegia canadensis– Wild columbine
  • Asclepias incarnata– Swamp milkweed
  • Asclepias syrica– Common milkweed
  • Asclepias tuberosa– Butterfly milkweed
  • Chelone glabra– Turtlehead
  • Desmodium canadense– Canadian tick trefoil
  • Desmodium glutinosum– Cluster tick trefoil
  • Desmodium paniculatum– Beggar tick trefoil
  • Eupatorium aromaticum– Small white snakeroot
  • Eupatorium fistulosum– Hollow-stemmed joe pye weed
  • Eupatorium hyssopifolium– Hyssopleaf thoroughwort
  • Eupatorium maculatum– Spotted joe pye weed
  • Eupatorium perfoliatum– Common boneset
  • Eupatorium purpureum– Sweet-scented joe–pye–weed
  • Eupatorium serotinum– Late-flowering thoroughwort
  • Liatris spicata– Blazing–star
  • Lobelia cardinalis– Cardinal–flower
  • Monards fistulosa– Wild bergamot
  • Monarda punctata– Dotted horsemint
  • Oenothera biennis– Common evening primrose
  • Rudbeckia hirta– Black–eyed susan
  • Solidago sempervirens– Seaside goldenrod
  • Solidago speciosa– Showy goldenrod
  • Symphyotrichum novae–angliae– New England aster
  • Vernonia noveboracensis– Ironweed

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Hummingbird Gardens

As a general rule of thumb, a red flower with a tubular shape will attract hummingbirds to your garden. The following native species, although not all falling under these specific parameters, will indeed encourage these favored birds to visit.

Trees/Shrubs

  • Liriodendron tulipifera– Tulip popular
  • Quercus palustris– Pin oak

Vines

  • Lonicera sempervirens– Trumpet honeysuckle

Herbs

  • Aquilegia canadensis– Wild columbine
  • Desmodium canadense– Canadian tick–trefoil
  • Desmodium glutinosum– Cluster tick–trefoil
  • Desmodium paniculatum– Beggar tick–trefoil
  • Hibiscus moscheutos– Marsh mallow
  • Liatris spicata– Blazing star
  • Lobelia cardinalis– Cardinal flower
  • Lobelia siphilitica– Indian tobacco
  • Monarda didyma– Oswego tea
  • Monarda fistulosa– Wild bergamot
  • Penstemon digitalis– Tall white beard tongue

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Bird Gardens

The following species provide food, habitat, and cover for native and migrating birds. Berries and nuts help sustain the diet of many birds while seed dispersal is ensured through consumption.

Trees/Shrubs

  • Acer rubrum– Red maple
  • Acer saccharinum– Silver maple
  • Acer saccharum– Sugar maple
  • Amelanchier arborea– Common serviceberry
  • Amelanchier canadensis– Canadian serviceberry
  • Aronia arbutifolia– Red chokeberry
  • Aronia melanocarpa– Black chokeberry
  • Betula lenta– Black birch
  • Betula populifolia– Gray birch
  • Carpinus caroliniana– Hornbeam
  • Carya glabra– Pignut
  • Carya ovata– Shagbark hickory
  • Celtis occidentalis– Hackberry
  • Cornus amomum– Silky dogwood
  • Cornus florida– Flowering dogwood
  • Cornus racemosa– Gray dogwood
  • Cornus sericea– Red osier
  • Diospyros viginiana– Persimmon
  • Fagus grandiflora– American beech
  • Fraxinus americana– White ash
  • Gaylussacia baccata– Black huckleberry
  • Ilex glabra– Inkberry
  • Ilex opaca– American holly
  • Ilex verticillata– Winterberry
  • Juniperus virginiana– Eastern red cedar
  • Kalmia angustifolia– Dwarf laurel
  • Kalmis latifolia– Mountain laurel
  • Lindera benzoin– Spicebush
  • Liquidambar styraciflua– Sweetgum
  • Liriodendron tulipifera– Tulip popular
  • Magnolia virginiana– Sweet–bay magnolia
  • Myrica pensylvanica– Bayberry
  • Nyssa sylvatica– Black tupelo
  • Pinus rigida– Pitch pine
  • Pinus strobus– White pine
  • Pinus virginiana– Virginia pine
  • Platanus occidentalis– American sycamore
  • Prunus serotina– Black cherry
  • Quercus alba– White oak
  • Quercus bicolor– Swamp white oak
  • Quercus coccinea– Scarlet oak
  • Quercus palustris– Pin oak
  • Quercus rubra– Red oak
  • Quercus velutina– Black oak
  • Rhus copallinum– Winged sumac
  • Rhus glabra– Smooth sumac
  • Rhus typhina– Staghorn sumac
  • Rhododendron maximum– White laurel
  • Rosa carolina– Pasture rose
  • Rosa palustris– Swamp rose
  • Rubus allegheniensis– Allegheny blackberry
  • Sambucus canadensis– Black elderberry
  • Sassafras albidum– Sassafras
  • Tilia americana– Basswood
  • Vaccinium angustifolium– Lowbush blueberry
  • Vaccinium corymbosum– Highbush blueberry
  • Viburnum lentago– Nannyberry

Herbs

  • Eupatorium purpureum– Sweet–scented joe–pye–weed
  • Helianthus angustifolius– Narrow–leaved sunflower
  • Helianthus decapetalus– Thin–leaf sunflower
  • Helianthus divaricatus– woodland sunflower
  • Liatris spicata– Blazing star
  • Lobelia cardinalis– Cardinal flower
  • Oenothera biennis– Common Evening primrose
  • Lobelia siphilitica– Indian tobacco
  • Monarda fistulosa– Wild bergamot
  • Rudbeckia hirta– Black–eyed susan

Grasses

  • Panicum virgatum– Switchgrass

Ferns

  • Osmunda cinnamomea– Cinnamon fern

Vines

  • Parthenocissus quinquefolia– Virginia creeper

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Bee Gardens

Over two hundred species of bees have been documented throughout New York City. Bee gardens help sustain these insects and plant species that rely on them for pollination. Bees have been recognized as one of the most important pollinators in urban and natural areas and are essential in maintaining the success of native plant reproduction.

Trees/Shrubs

  • Acer rubrum– Red maple
  • Amelanchier candensis– Canadian serviceberry
  • Amelanchier laevis– Alleghany serviceberry
  • Cephalanthus occidentalis– Buttonbush
  • Clethra alnifolia– Sweet pepperbush
  • Cornus amomum– Silky dogwood
  • Cornus florida– Flowering dogwood
  • Cornus racemosa– Gray dogwood
  • Cornus sericea– Red osier
  • Gaylussacia baccata– Black huckleberry
  • Gaylussacia frondosa– Dwark huckleberry
  • Prunus serotina– Black cherry
  • Rhododendron periclymenoides– Pinkster azalea
  • Rhododendron viscosum– Swamp azalea
  • Rhus glabra– Smooth sumac
  • Rhus typhina– Staghorn sumac
  • Rosa carolina– Pasture rose
  • Rosa palustris– Swamp rose
  • Rosa virginiana– Low pasture rose
  • Rubus allegheniensis– Allegheny blackberry
  • Rubus flagellaris– Northern dewberry
  • Rubus occidentalis– Black raspberry
  • Rubus odoratus– Purple flowering raspberry
  • Salix discolor– Pussy willow
  • Sambucus canadensis– Black elderberry
  • Sassafras albidum– Sassafras
  • Spiraea alba var. latifolia– White meadowsweet
  • Spiraea tomentosa– Steeplebush
  • Tilia americana– Basswood
  • Vaccinium angustifolium– Lowbush blueberry
  • Vaccinium corymbosum– Highbush blueberry
  • Vaccinium macrocarpon– Cranberry
  • Vaccinium pallidum– Blue Ridge blueberry
  • Vaccinium stamineum– Deerberry

Vines

  • Vitis aestivalis– Summer grape
  • Vitis labrusca– Fox grape

Herbs

  • Aquilegia canadensis– Wild columbine
  • Aralia nudicaulis– Wild sarsaparilla
  • Asclepias incarnata– Swamp milkweed
  • Asclepias syriaca– Common milkweed
  • Chamaecrista fasciculata– Golden cassia
  • Eupatorium fistulosum– Hollow–stemmed joe–pye–weed
  • Eupatorium hyssopifolium– Hyssopleaf thoroughwort
  • Eupatorium maculatum– Spotted joe–pye–weed
  • Eupatorium perfoliatum– Common boneset
  • Eupatorium purpureum– Sweet–scented joe–pye–weed
  • Eupatorium rugosum– White snakeroot
  • Eurybia divaricata– White wood aster
  • Geranium maculatum– Wild geranium
  • Helianthus decapetalus– Thin–leaf sunflower
  • Helianthus divaricatus– Woodland sunflower
  • Lespedeza capitata– Bush clover
  • Monarda fistulosum– Wild bergamot
  • Oenothera biennis– Common evening primrose
  • Pycnanthemum tenuifolium– Mountainmint
  • Pycnanthemum virginianum– Virginia mountainmint
  • Rudbeckia hirta– Black–eyed susan
  • Solidago caesia– Blue stem goldenrod
  • Solidago canadensis– Canada goldenrod
  • Solidago juncea– Early goldenrod
  • Solidago nemoralis– Gray goldenrod
  • Solidago sempervirens– Seaside goldenrod
  • Symphyotrichum lavae– Smooth blue aster
  • Symphyotrichun novae–angliae– New England aster
  • Verbena hastata– Blue vervain

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