As I have stated before, native plants are my passion as a gardener and landscaper, but I don’t promote the use of natives because I think it will save the world, or because hybridized and introduced species are evil. I plant, experiment with, talk about, and promote the use of native plants because I am instinctively practical.
While some garden plants may be worthy of fussing and fretting, those are few and far between. For the most part I prefer plants which can weather our weather; extremes of hot and cold, aridity, soils low in organic matter, high elevation, and frequent wind of the freezing or scorching kind. Plants native to the open hills and ranges of Wyoming have adapted to these conditions, and so fit my criteria for garden and landscape.
Now that I have extolled the virtues of Wyoming’s climate, let me wax a tad gushy about the beauty of our natives. They never cease to elicit a smile from me. Their toughness only accentuates their beauty.
Having said that, there are some plant species I would not do without which are not native to Wyoming, or even North America. These garden plants are reliable, tough, and beautiful. I am referring to the Sedums. Sedums, with their waxy cuticle are seriously drought, heat, and wind tolerant. I have found them to do well in both full sun and half sun. My back door Sedums only get morning sun and they are flourishing.
The Sedums excel when it comes to texture. There are hundreds of species to choose from, and mixing it up in the garden yields a lovely display of changing textures. Personally, I prefer the ground cover Sedums, and I am easily enticed to grab any kind I see at the local garden stores.