Connecticut River Coastal Conservation District, Inc.

Middletown office:
deKoven House Community Center
27 Washington Street
Middletown, CT 06457

Phone: 860-346-3282
Fax: 860-346-3284

Shrubs, Flowers and Tree Seedlings!


Spruce up your landscape and support your local conservation district! The Annual Shrub and Seedling Sale held in April is our main fundraising event for the year. All proceeds fund our natural resources technical and educational programs and services. 

At this annual event we offer a wide variety of hard-to-find native plants, including potted shrubs, ground covers, grasses, ferns, flowering perennials, herbs and bare root evergreen seedlings. Almost all plants are Connecticut natives. 

Each tree, shrub and flower you plant enhances our environment by providing food and cover for wildlife, cleaning the air, curbing the greenhouse effect, cutting energy costs, reducing soil erosion, improving water quality and beautifying our community.

Planting information and other resources are available at the sale, and Master Gardeners are on hand to answer your gardening and planting questions. 

Most plants are pre-ordered, though extras are also available the days of the sale.   Some plants are in limited supply so it is best to order in advance to secure your choices.  Contact us for more information, or if you would like to be placed on our mailing list to receive a copy of the brochure and order form.

Check out these links for additional information:
UCONN Plant Database
Connecticut Botanical Society
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Edible Landscaping, National Gardening Association
Edible Flowers, What's Cooking America
Alternatives for Invasive Ornamental Species, CT Agricultural Experiment Station

Our 2014 plant sale will take place April 25, 26 and 27 at the Old Saybrook Shopping Center (Stop & Shop plaza), Boston Post Road and Elm Street, Old Saybrook (same location as the past five years).  The 2014 brochure and order form are now available (open PDF brochure).  Order early for the best selection! Advance orders are due April 7, 2014, but there will also be extra plants available for purchase at the sale. 

We are excited to have a new offering this year, the Hummingbird Special, a group of hummingbird attracting plants packaged in a rustic, reusable, handmade pine box, perfect for a special gift. (Apologies--the Hummingbird Special is now sold out! We hope to have it again next year.) We are also selling the popular Organic Compost from Collins Powder Hill Farm in Enfield. And once again, the sale is featuring pollinator plants, edible landscaping plants, wet-loving plants for rain gardens, and plants suitable for waterside buffer gardens. 

Photographs and more detailed descriptions of all plant selections are included on the "Plant Info/Photos" tab on this page.

More information about the plants offered, including photographs, along with information about edible landscaping and other resources, can be found at the websites listed below.

Check out these links for additional information:
UCONN Plant Database
Connecticut Botanical Society
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Edible Landscaping, National Gardening Association
Edible Flowers, What's Cooking America
Alternatives for Invasive Ornamental Species, CT Agricultural Experiment Station









Shrubs, Flowers and Tree Seedlings—Photographs and More!


Codes: CT=CT native species; DR=Deer resistant; RG=Good for Rain Garden; P=Pollinator plant; E=Edible


American Cranberrybush
Viburnum trilobum

'Bailey's Compactum'


Compact growing shrub with upright, spreading branches. Creamy white flower heads appear in late May, followed by profuse long-lasting red fruit that shows beautifully against the shiny green foliage.  A fall standout with deep burgundy foliage and the large, bright red berries. Fruit attracts birds.  Perfect for the back of the border, where its dense form will create a nice backdrop for showier summer plants.  Berries are tasty and nutritious and an excellent substitute for cranberries in preserves, sauces, jams and juices (they have a single seed that can't be eaten).  See USDA fact sheet and USDA plant guide for more info.

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi


Excellent low growing evergreen ground cover suitable for difficult sites. White flowers bloom in spring. Bronze fall foliage and red berries in winter add interest. Does best in sandy well-drained soil; salt and wind tolerant. Low maintenance! See USDA fact sheet for more info.


'Triple Crown'

E  P

Very hardy thornless variety known for its flavor, very large berries, productivity, vigor, and disease resistance. Clusters of white, 5-petaled, rose-like flowers in spring give way to firm, glossy blackberries of excellent eating quality, bearing from the end of July thru August. Semi-erect, the canes can be trellised or pruned in summer to an easy picking height of 42". Good for fresh eating, jams, jellies, and pies! Attracts birds and butterflies.

Blueberry, highbush
Vaccinium corymbosum

CT  RG  E  P

Upright, spreading, multi-stemmed shrub with four season interest. Blooms spring through summer. Edible berries ripen July-August. Foliage yellow-red-burgundy in fall, bark is red or yellow-green in winter. See USDA fact sheet and USDA plant guide for more info.
Blueberry, lowbush
Vaccinium angustifolium 

CT  RG  E  P

Showy, profuse while flowers produce small very flavorful blue berries mid-summer, with the distinctive "wild" blueberry flavor. Glossy, deep green leaves turn scarlet burgundy in fall. Excellent selection for borders or naturalizing. Spreads with underground stems and a mature planting can form a dense ground cover.  Attracts wildlife!

Potentilla fruticosa 'Red Ace'


Deciduous, showy shrub, with long-blooming rich vermillion flowers, with undersides that become a pale yellow in summer. Flowers change from red to yellow under intense heat. Its densely branched form makes it useful for a colorful accent or border plant. It does best with morning sun and afternoon shade, and tolerates poor sandy soils. 'Red Ace' is a hardy, easy to grow plant that makes a great border, hedge, or ground cover. Attracts bees, butterflies, birds!

Common Ninebark
Physocarpus opulifolius 'Center Glow'


'Center Glow’ is a mounded, vase-shaped ninebark cultivar, most noted for its attractive foliage. Maple-like leaves emerge greenish-gold in spring but age to burgundy, with leaves showing both colors as they mature. Foliage is nicely complemented by small pinkish-white, five-petaled flowers that bloom in dense, flat, rounded, spiraea-like clusters in late spring. Exfoliating bark on mature branches peels in strips to reveal several layers of reddish to light brown inner bark, providing winter interest. Good as hedge.

Creeping Cranberry
Vaccinium macrocarpon


Excellent low growing evergreen ground cover, especially for damp sites and near salt water. Tiny leaves on many stems spread rapidly; green leaves in summer turn mahogany red in fall. Edible red berries in fall add to plant's beauty. Very hardy!  

Creeping Juniper
Juniperus horizontalis


Compact evergreen ground cover with flat, trailing branches. Intense silver-blue foliage is light purple in winter. Excellent for mass planting as turf substitute; rock gardens and overhanging rock ledges; and erosion control on light to moderate slopes. Heat and drought tolerant; resistant to salt damage. Grows well in almost any well-drained soil.

Sambucus canadensis 'Adams'

CT  RG  DR  E  P

American elderberry is a thicket-forming shrub with deep green foliage and profuse large flat-topped clusters of small, fragrant white flowers in spring. The flowers are a good source of nectar for pollinators. This variety was selected for its large clusters of dark blue to black fruit in late summer to fall. The fruit is an outstanding source of food for birds and other wildlife. Old stems provide overwintering sites for insects, and birds such as woodpeckers forage in the clumps for insects. Excellent for naturalizing in moist soil. Fruit is good for jam, pies, syrup and wine! See USDA fact sheet and USDA plant guide for more info.

Grape, seedless
Vitis 'Concord Seedless'



Easy to grow and very productive seedless grape variety. The sweet deep purple fruits are highly regarded as pie grapes, and excellent for fresh eating, juice, wine, jam and jelly. The fruit resembles Concord in color and has the great flavor, vigor and productivity of the original, but no seeds! Also, the clusters and berries are slightly smaller. Ripens in mid to late September, slightly ahead of the original Concord. Fragrant, white flowers in June are followed by medium to small size fruit with a thin, slip skin. Foliage is large, lobed, dark green in the summer with some fall color, and vines have shaggy bark. Vines are vigorous and winter-hardy. Gnarled, twisted mature vines with shaggy bark are attractive in the winter landscape. Tolerates a wide range of soil conditions, but must have good drainage. Plants are self-pollinating.

In general, grapes are easy to grow, and a little careful effort will reward you with large crops of fruit. Grape vines usually begin producing the second or third year after planting, and a mature vine will yield 15-20 pounds annually.  The vines also have ornamental value; large leaves cover a wall, form a privacy screen, or offer overhead shade. Can be grown on a trellis or arbor. Provides shelter and food for birds. 


Hydrangea, Smooth
Hydrangea arborescens


Easy to grow shrub with low, rounded habit. Large showy clusters of flat, white flowers open in June and last for many weeks. Plants bloom most of the summer. Flowers are a key source of nectar for native insects and butterflies, and plants provide cover for birds. Thrives in part shade and tolerates deep shade; good for grouping in dappled sun.  Flowers can be used in fresh or dried arrangements. 

Ilex glabra 'Densa'


Excellent evergreen with compact habit and lustrous dark green foliage. Ideal for low hedge or grouping, or for a small foundation space. Very hardy and easy to grow! Tolerates a variety of landscape situations, including sandy soils or places prone to exposure to road salt or seaside conditions. Provides year round cover for birds and black berries provide an excellent food source. Also provides nectar for small pollinators.  See USDA fact sheet for more info.  
Magnolia, Sweetbay
Magnolia virginiana 


Semi-evergreen tree with wide, rounded form makes an excellent foundation, focal point or specimen plant.  Long-blooming with large lemon-scented flowers.  Seedpods provide food for birds.

Mountain Laurel
Kalmia latifolia


The CT State Flower! One of the most beautiful, long-lived broad leaved evergreen shrubs. Slow growing and very hardy with striking clustered flowers. Good for massing and borders. Tolerates full sun, but grows best in partial shade.

Northern Bayberry
Myrica pensylvanica


Dense-branching semi-evergreen shrub with a rounded habit. Narrow, leathery, glossy, grayish-green leaves are aromatic when crushed. Both male and female plants produce flowers, with only the male flowers displaying color (yellowish-green). Flowers on female plants, if pollinated, are followed by attractive clusters of tiny, grayish-white fruits in late summer, which usually persist through the winter. The fruits, attractive to birds, are covered with an aromatic, waxy substance used to make candles, soaps and sealing wax. Best planted in groups or massed, bayberry is a versatile shrub that can be used in woodland gardens or shrub borders, as a screen or informal hedge, in wet or shady sites, or on a bank for erosion control. Salt tolerance makes it appropriate for locations near roads that are salted in winter. See USDA fact sheet for more info.    

Pagoda Dogwood
Cornus alternifolia


Wonderful specimen tree with distinctive tiered pagoda-like form and alternate leaves, usually multi-stemmed. Very fragrant creamy or yellowish-white flowers form clusters at the end of branches, held upright along the horizontally tiered branches. Berries follow, changing gradually from green to red to purple-black, on red stalks.   Flowers attract pollinators; berries are a valuable food source, enticing birds and other wildlife. Fall interest with yellow to purple-red foliage. Winter appeal with interesting branching pattern and light brownish-grey bark. Grows in a wide range of conditions, from full sun to fairly heavy shade, and requires cool, moist, well-drained soil.



Rubus 'Heritage'

CT  E  P

Heirloom variety recommended for beginners. Upright and everbearing, blooming twice and producing summer and fall crops. Berries are excellent eating quality, with good size, color and  flavor. The fall crop is highly productive, and can ripen from the end of August through October. Fruit is good for jam, freezing and delicious fresh. Attracts birds and butterflies. Very good resistance to pests and diseases, and drought tolerant. Click here for growing information and more.  

Redbud, Eastern
Cercis canadensis


Showy bright magenta-pink to lilac springtime flowers appear all over this small tree before big, beautiful heart-shaped leaves for a striking display.  Flowers appear in small clusters, primarily on older stems. Graceful form with arching branches make these lovely as a specimen tree, in groupings, and in shrub borders. Also good in naturalized areas. Dense growth provides shelter and nesting for birds.  Honeybees visit the blossoms, and many birds eat the seeds. Does well in moderate to low fertility soils and is very drought resistant. See USDA fact sheet and USDA plant guide for more info.

Red Chokeberry
Aronia arbutifolia 'Brilliantissima'


Fragrant white flowers in spring, scarlet fall foliage, and persistent berries for winter interest make this plant valuable in all seasons. Prolific clusters of spring blooming white to pinkish flowers provide nectar for early butterflies and pollinators. Abundant shiny red fruit ripens in late summer and persists through winter, providing late season berries for birds. Glossy foliage turns brilliant red in autumn, making it a good alternative to the non-native, invasive burning bush (Euonymus alatus). Compact growth provides cover for wildlife. Vase-shaped with arching stems, it is great for borders, mass plantings, naturalistic areas, and hedges in sunny to partly shady sites. Adaptable to a wide range of conditions, including wet or poor soils; useful for bank stabilization/ colonization; and drought-tolerant, salt-tolerant, and pest-free. Berries are good for jam!

Red Osier Dogwood
Cornus sericea 'Baileyi'


Beautiful multi-stemmed deciduous shrub with four season interest and great wildlife value!  Best known for its showy bright cherry red stems in winter, this Red Twig dogwood cultivar also features textured green, oval leaves in spring that provide a striking contrast to the colorful red bark; frothy white clusters of tiny flowers mid-spring to summer; white to light blue flowers in summer; and great red-purple fall color. Provides food and shelter for birds. Likes moisture and is ideal for wetter parts of the garden, but is also very adaptable and tolerates poor soils. Great for grouping or massing, for mixed or shrub borders, screens, natural landscapes, and bird and winter gardens. Very hardy! See USDA fact sheet for more info.

Shadbush, Smooth

CT  DR  RG  E  P

This member of the amalanchier genus lights up the landscape in early May with pure white flowers and bronzy-red foliage! Beautiful delicately scented  flowers provide nectar for early bees and butterflies. Mid summer fruits ripen to brilliant violet pink, aging to deep blue purple when fully ripe. In fall, foliage provides a colorful brilliant show, first turning yellow, then orange, then bright red. Even in winter, it remains attractive with its smooth silver bark. Found in dry to moist woods, fields and thickets, it tolerates most any garden situation. It blooms more in full sun, but has a more open and graceful habit in shade. It is drought tolerant once established, but will grow taller and faster in consistently moist soils. Amelanchier can be grown as a small tree or pruned to become a densely branched shrub  It makes an attractive multi-stemmed specimen plant, or grouped together forms an innovative hedge that will attract wildlife and birds, which love the berries. Berries are edible and can be eaten raw, cooked, and even made into wine!

Fragaria x ananassa 'Honeoye'


Early-midseason variety recommended for beginners and home gardeners, and suited for organic growing. Produces large firm berries with superb quality and flavor, also excellent for freezing. High yields over long fruiting season. Hardy and vigorous. A great edible ground cover! Click here for growing information and more.


(aka Sweet Pepperbush)

Clethra alnifolia


Compact, slowly spreading clethra cultivar with a more mounding shape and more prolific flowers than the species. In mid to late summer, abundant, long, very fragrant white bottlebrush-like flower spikes on upright branches bloom for 4-6 weeks, and attract butterflies, bees and hummingbirds. Serrated, glossy, dark green leaves turn a striking yellow in autumn. Flower spikes give way to spikes of dark brown seed capsules, which persist into winter and provide continuing interest. Somewhat unique among the summer-flowering shrubs due to its ability to bloom well in shady locations. Great massed in naturalized landscapes, and an excellent addition to a border or woodland edge. Compact, rounded habit makes it ideal for small gardens or around foundations. Also a good shrub for wet areas, such as low spots, stream banks or pond/water garden edges. Best planted in part sun but tolerates all light conditions. Prefers well-drained organic soil but adapts to a variety of soils. Salt tolerant. See USDA fact sheet for more info.

Swamp Azalea
Azalea viscosum
'Ribbon Candy'


An upright growing, multi-stemmed, deciduous plant with sweetly scented early-summer flowers and lustrous blueish-green foliage. In mid to late June multiple buds at branch ends open to display masses of pink, star shaped flowers with a distinctive white stripe that bisects each petal. Easy to grow and naturalizes well in semi-shaded woodland areas. Planted in mass, its fine texture, flower display, and flame red fall foliage make this shrub truly amazing. Stems are distinctive red-brown color, providing winter interest. Flowers attract butterflies, hummingbirds and song birds. Happy in poorly-drained soil and wetland areas, making it a good choice for rain gardens. Also tolerates some drought.  

Winterberry, female
Ilex verticillata
'Red Sprite'


Another great wildlife plant! Deciduous holly with deep green lustrous foliage spreads to form multi-stemmed thickets that provide good cover for birds. This very popular, award-winning dwarf form matures to only 3 to 4 feet tall, with a mounded habit. Early blooms produces numerous, very large red berries which persist well in the winter, providing interest and important wildlife food. Released by USDA, this cultivar is widely considered to be one of the best winterberries. Good for naturalizing. See USDA fact sheet for more info.

Winterberry, male
Ilex verticillata


Deciduous holly with deep green lustrous foliage spreads to form multi-stemmed thickets. Pollinates females (see above), which produce bright red, persistent berries in winter. Only one male is needed to pollinate many female bushes planted nearby. Good for naturalizing.

Hamamelis virginiana

Noteworthy for being one of the last woody plant species to flower, this multi-stemmed small tree or shrub provides a display of small, fragrant twisted yellow flowers in late fall-early winter. Also adds winter interest with leaves that turn an outstanding showy gold in the fall. Flowers provide nectar for migrating insects, and seeds are eaten by a variety of birds and wildlife, including wild turkey, northern bobwhite and grey squirrel. Upright spreading branches are perfect nesting sites for birds. Good in shrub borders, naturalized areas, shade and as a screen. Moderately drought tolerant.


Bee Balm
Monarda Fistulosa
'Claire Grace'

CT  DR  E  P

Extremely showy soft lavender pin cushion-like flowers, with excellent, shiny foliage. Very long-blooming when spent flowers are removed.  Flowers are a magnet for butterflies and hummingbirds, and are of special value to native bees according to the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.  Great as a cut flower! Flowers are edible, and aromatic minty leaves can be used to make tea.  

Cardinal Flower
Lobelia cardinalis

CT  RG   P

Long-blooming, with brilliant deep red tubular flowers on spikes set against green and purple bronze colored foliage. Provides late summer bloom to the perennial border, wild garden, native plant garden or woodland garden. Adaptable to most sites; even loves to be wet and grows well near ponds and streams. Very attractive to butterflies and hummingbirds; an excellent choice for butterfly or hummingbird gardens. Makes an excellent cut flower.  

Echinacea purpurea
'Praire Splendor'

CT  DR  E  P

Gorgeous gold medal winning selection with  4-6” rosy pink flowers and compact, dense habit. Blooms up to 2 weeks earlier than other coneflowers, with extended flowering from early summer to first frost. The fragrant blooms produce abundant nectar for butterflies and other beneficial insects. Seed produced by spent flowers attract goldfinches and other songbirds. Looks great planted in groups, which has the added benefit of attracting more butterflies. Adaptable and tolerant of extremes of heat, humidity, cold, and even drought when established. Thrives in any well-drained soil, and blooms best in full sun and good garden soil that dries out a bit between waterings, but can take almost any conditions. Leaves, flowers and roots can be used for tea. Great as a cut flower. Echinacea 'Prairie Splendor'™

Golden Star
Chrysogonum virginianum 'Pierre'


A great ground cover for sun or shade! Soft green triangular leaves create a perfect backdrop for star-shaped golden flowers. Long-blooming variety with strong foliage and clump-forming habit. In mild winters, foliage can remain evergreen. Good for underplanting, or for edging in the perennial border and along a woodland path. May be used in a rain garden, where it will naturalize. Easy to grow and maintain. Prefers moist soils but tolerates drier soils if protected from sun. Can withstand limited foot traffic.  

New England Aster
Aster novae-angliae
'Purple Dome'


Compact heavy blooming variety, that provides a welcome burst of late season color. From late summer to mid-fall, is covered with semi-double, deep purple, daisy-like flowers. Attracts butterflies. Great as a border specimin and for cut flowers, which have exceptionally long vase life. Beautiful planted in mass.  

'Mercury Rising'


The first truly hardy, red-flowering Coreopsis! Abundant deep cherry-red single flowers bloom from June to October over fine-textured foliage.  Some flowers may appear frosted in creamy-white. Branches well and spreads to 3 feet. Excellent for massing or as a specimen plant; towards the middle of a sunny border; or in containers. Attracts butterflies.  

Asparagus officinalis
'Jersey Knight'


Superior, extremely vigorous, productive, all-male variety with excellent flavor, and large succulent spears.  Produces premium quality spears that despite being up to 1" thick are tender and sweet. Easy to grow and disease resistant.  Once established, a bed can produce for up to 15 years.  
Lavandula angustifolia

DR  E  P

Low-growing shrub-like perennial.  Features aromatic silvery-gray vegetation topped in summer with stems of showy, fragrant, white to purple-violet hued flowers.  A favorite for herb gardens or in the perennial border. Attracts butterflies.  Drought tolerant when established.  Excellent in fresh or dried arrangements. Use in cooking, sachets, potpourri and baths.

Origanum vulgare

DR  E  P

Aromatic and popular culinary herb, with oval, dark green leaves and spiky white to pink flower stalks.  Easy to grow in the garden.  Makes a nice edging plant and ground cover, requiring little maintenance.  High in antioxidants, and useful for relieving headaches and coughs.

Rosemarinus officinalis

DR  E  P

One of the most popular herbs for the garden! Shrub-like herb with intensely fragrant evergreen needle-like leaves used fresh or dried for cooking, and for aromatic oil. Individual branches of most rosemaries are held upright at various heights, creating a tight but interestingly irregular habit. Long-lasting, fragrant light blue flowers attract butterflies, bees and hummingbirds. Fragrant branches can be used for dried arrangements or in cut flower bouquets. Drought tolerant. This is a tender perennial that should be grown in containers or dug up and potted, and brought inside for winter.  Container plants are attractive additions to patios, decks and other sunny areas around the home. Leaves and flowers can also be used in sachets.   
Salvia officinalis 

DR  E  P

Common sage is grown for both its culinary properties and its excellent ornamental qualities, including it showy, profuse flowers. It's a compact, many branched shrubby perennial, with evergreen strongly aromatic grey-green leaves that are used fresh or dried in cooking. Whorls of two-lipped, lavender-blue flowers (to 1 inch long) in long, upright spikes appear in late spring.  A natural for containers or small hedges. Very easy to grow, performing nicely in the garden and attracting butterflies, bees and hummingbirds. A standard in the herb garden, it's also effective mixed with perennials in borders, cottage gardens, and in wild or naturalized plantings. Drought tolerant. Leaves can also be used in potpourris.

Thymus vulgaris

DR  E  P

Easiest herb to grow! This generally upright, woody-based perennial is grown primarily as a culinary herb. Highly aromatic needle-shaped green leaves reach their peak just before plants flower. Whorls of tiny, tubular pink to lilac flowers appear on stem ends in late spring to early summer. Foliage forms dense, ground-hugging mats. Perfect as a low spreading ground cover in rock gardens, rock walls, in between flagstones or simply planted in the garden. Tolerates moderate foot traffic. Drought tolerant once established. Attractive to butterflies and bees. Use fresh or dried in cooking, and for teas, potpourri and baths.

Lady Fern
Athyrium angustum forma rubellum
'Lady in Red'

CT  DR  


This attractive New England Wildflower Society selection with delicate, lacy light green elliptic fronds and contrasting vibrant burgundy-red stems is a standout in the shade garden! A breathtaking flush of new fronds appears in the spring, with new leaves appearing throughout the season for a continuously fresh look. Hardy and easy to grow, with slow spreading habit (spreads about 3 feet in 5 years). Excellent choice for woodland gardens, shade gardens or shaded border fronts. Good for cutting for flower arrangements.  

Maidenhair Fern
Adiantum pedatum 'Miss Sharples'


Beautiful, compact Maidenhair fern with fluffy pale green, fan-shaped leaves and dark colored stems. Delicate little fiddleheads emerge copper-pink, and open to bronzy-chartreuse foliage that ages to golden green. Enjoys moisture and can be used along waterways, water features or any moist garden area. Also very effective planted in rockeries or crevices in stonewalls.  

Little Bluestem Grass
Schizachyrium scop. 'Prairie Blues'


This Little Bluestem cultivar has a tight upright habit and reliable cool grey-blue foliage that turns a striking rosy orange in fall.  Easy to grow and drought tolerant. An excellent choice for massing in native gardens. Attracts butterflies and is the host plant for many skippers. The stems and foliage are perfect for bird nesting and cover while the seeds are enjoyed by many local song birds in the fall and winter. Nice in dried arrangements.
Switch Grass
Panicum virgatum


Upright landscape grass that comes up in tidy clumps of lovely bright blue-green foliage in spring, then bursts into clouds of silvery, pink, or reddish flowers in late summer.  Foliage turns a striking yellow/reddish-tan in autumn, fading to tan-beige in winter. Panicles turn beige as the seeds mature in fall, with seed plumes lasting well into winter. Typically retains its vertical, columnar form throughout the growing season.  Attracts butterflies and is the larval and/or nectar source for two types of skippers (Delaware Skipper and Dotted Skipper); seeds provide food for birds in winter. Good as an accent plant, for grouping or massing, or as a screen. Works well in perennial borders, wild gardens,  meadows or naturalized areas; along stream or pond edges; and in rain gardens. Undemanding, tough and easy to grow!  Drought tolerant.


Douglas Fir
Pseudotsuga taxifolia


Large evergreen tree with conical form. Excellent Christmas tree, or shade or lawn tree. Moderate to rapid growth. Needles are short, soft, spirally-arranged, with blue-green to gray-green color. Bark is smooth on young trunks; reddish brown ridges with age. Not for dry or poorly drained sites. Dislikes high winds.

Eastern Red Cedar
Juniperus virginiana


Fast growing pyramid-shape evergreen with flat needles. Gnarled fluted trunk and gray to red-brown bark of ornamental interest. Prickly foliage is browse resistant. Good for specimen trees, masses, screens, windbreaks or hedges, and difficult sites. Attracts songbirds, butterflies, small mammals.

Eastern White Pine
Pinus strobus


Rapid grower with broad pyramid to dense column-like shape. Thin soft needles are light green with a bluish cast. Smooth gray to gray-green bark, becomes furrowed with age. Very versatile; use as an ornamental, Christmas tree or windbreak. Good specimen for parks or other large spaces. Easily transplanted and grown, but not tolerant of strong winds, salt, and vulnerable to ice/heavy snows.

White Spruce
Picea glauca


Fast growing, very hardy compact tree with narrow, conical form. Needles are short, 4-sided stiff pointed blue-green needles. Good for Christmas trees or ornamentals; in windbreaks, screens, hedges, and mass plantings; and along the seashore, due to salt tolerance.

Selection of hummingbird-attracting shrubs and perennials, all CT natives, to bring a vivid splash of nectar-rich blooms to your yard! Plants come packaged in a rustic, hand-made 12" x 17.5" pine box (see example in photo below). Includes 3 shrubs and 13 perennials. Shrubs are in quart size pots; perennials are plugs, with the exception of Giant Solomon's Seal, which is in a quart size pot. The box includes plant descriptions and information specific to the hummingbird theme.

Trumpet Honeysuckle
Lonicera sempervirens



Excellent twining vine with prominent blooms for full sun. One of the showiest of the vining honeysuckles, this beautiful, slender, climbing vine is visited frequently by hummingbirds. Leaves are smooth, glossy, paired, and semi-evergreen. Blooms May to June, with flowers at stem ends in whorled clusters. Showy, large, non-fragrant, trumpet-shaped flowers are scarlet to orangish red on the outside and yellowish inside. Small red berries, which mature in fall, provide food for birds. Vines also provide cover and nesting sites for birds. Attracts butterflies too. Typically grows 10-15' (less frequently to 20'). Best grown on trellises, fences, arbors or pergolas.

Clethra alnifolia



Densely-branched, rounded, deciduous shrub that typically grows to 3-6’ (less frequently to 8’) tall and is noted for producing a late summer bloom of sweetly fragrant showy white flowers, attracting hummingbirds, butterflies and bees. An excellent, trouble-free shrub, good for massing in conspicuous areas in lawns or shrub borders where its attractive foliage, fragrant summer bloom, good fall color and tidy winter appearance can be showcased. Slender, upright habit makes it ideal for planting in narrow spaces in the perennial border or around foundations. Also a good shrub for wet areas, such as low spots, stream banks or pond/water garden edges. Best planted in part sun but tolerates all light conditions. Prefers well-drained organic soil but adapts to a variety of soils. Salt tolerant. Of special value to native bees according to the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation; birds also eat fruit. See USDA fact sheet for more info. Clethra alnifolia (Coastal sweet pepperbush) #3524

Northern Bush Honeysuckle
Diervilla lonicera


Glossy, deep green leaves serves as a backdrop for showy yellow flowers on this small, mound-shaped, deciduous shrub (3- 4 feet tall and 3-5 feet wide). Not a true honeysuckle, but has honeysuckle-like flowers, which appear in early summer and last through summer.  Small, bell-shaped flowers are yellow-green at first, becoming orange or purplish-red. Dark-green leaves change from yellow to orange-red in autumn, and its capsule-like fruit is a songbird favorite. Prefers full sun to partial shade and fertile, well-drained soil, but adapts easily to poor, rocky soils, and dry and moist locations. Drought tolerant. This easy to grow plant is perfect in small spaces, and good for borders, edging, mass planting, naturalizing, or as a specimen. In addition to hummingbirds, attracts beneficial insects, butterflies and songbirds.

Giant Solomon's Seal
Polygonatum biflorum var. commutatum


A substantial perennial plant typically growing  3-5 feet tall (up to  feet' at times) on stout arching stems, with showy flowers and fruits. The upright green stems appear in early spring and persist throughout the summer. Bell- shaped, greenish-white flowers dangle May to June from the leaf axils along and underneath the arching stems. Flowers are followed by inedible but attractive blue-black berries that dangle from the stems, which are a draw for wildlife. When undisturbed, will spread slowly to form large colonies. Easily grown in average, medium to wet soils in part shade to full shade. Best in woodland gardens, wild gardens, cottage gardens, and naturalized areas where it has plenty of room.
Cardinal Flower
Lobelia cardinalis


Showy perennial with cardinal red flowers in erect 8 inch terminal spikes, and finely-toothed, lance-shaped, dark green leaves. Typically  2-3 feet tall (infrequently to 4 feet). Velvety flowers have a tubular shape and two lips, with the three lobes of the lower lip appearing more prominent than the two lobes of the upper lip. Blooms July to September. Flowers are very attractive to butterflies and hummingbirds. Provides late summer bloom to the perennial border, wild garden, native plant garden or woodland garden. Excellent for butterfly or bird (hummingbird) gardens, and also effective at the edge of ponds or streams. Since most insects find it difficult to navigate the long tubular flowers,cardinal flower depends on hummingbirds, which feed on the nectar, for pollination.

Great Blue Lobelia
Lobelia siphilitica

A blue counterpart to the Cardinal Flower (see above). Spikes of showy brilliant blue flowers attract butterflies and hummingbirds to your garden! Flowers are tubular, and 2-lipped, with the three lobes of the lower lip appearing more prominent than the two lobes of the upper lip. Flowers arise from the upper leaf axils forming a dense terminal spike atop stiff, unbranched, leafy stalks, typically 2-3 feet' tall. Light green leaves are finely-toothed and lance-shaped. Provides outstanding late summer color to the perennial border, wild garden, native plant garden, woodland garden, or naturalized planting. Also effective for wet meadows, or pond or stream edges. Naturalizes easily in moist soils, but tolerates periods of drought. Of special value to native bees according to the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.

Red Columbine
Aquilegia canadensis

Well-known for its showy nodding, bell-like, red and yellow flowers in April-May. Delicate foliage remains attractive throughout the summer. Grows up to 2 feet tall. Blooms attract hummingbirds, bees, butterflies.  A wonderful addition to native plant gardens, woodland gardens, cottage gardens or naturalized areas. Also effective in borders. Likes moisture but must be in well drained soils. Drought tolerant.

Canada Lily
Lilium canadense


Large, showy lily bearing as many as 16-20 beautiful stalked nodding flowers on one plant, each at the top of a stem with whorled leaves. Flowers, which bloom in June-July, range in color from yellow to orange-red with dark red spots. Grows 3-8 feet tall. Best in sun, and moist to wet organic soil. Canada lily is pollinated mainly by the ruby-throated hummingbird.

Anise Hyssop (Anise  Agastache)
Agastache foeniculum (formerly Agastache anise)

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Erect branches of mint-and-licorice-scented, medium green leaves end in fuzzy spikes of small but showy lavender flowers, highly attractive to hummingbirds, butterflies, and bees. Grows to 3 to 5 feet tall and 1 foot wide, and reseeds freely. Best in full sun to part shade, and moist to dry, well-drained soil. Drought tolerant. A good choice for borders, wildflower gardens, herb gardens, butterfly gardens or meadows. Flower spikes are attractive additions to fresh cut or dried arrangements. Flowers are also edible and a great addition to salads.

Beard Tongue
Penstemon digitalis


A much loved native perennial, featuring profuse small but showy flowers on spikes above lustrous dark green leaves. Tubular, two-lipped one inch white or light pink flowers bloom April to June on 2 to 3 foot branching stalks. Flowers attract hummingbirds, as well as butterflies and other pollinators. Known to bloom a long period of time when spent flowers are removed. Songbirds such as cardinals and goldfinch eat ripe seeds from flowers stems in fall and winter. Grows 3 to 5 feet tall, and 1.5 to 2 feet wide. Grow in full sun, in average, dry to medium moisture, well-drained soil. Mass in sunny borders, wild gardens, native plant gardens or naturalized areas. Great as a cut flower!

Garden Phlox
Phlox paniculata


Best known and latest-blooming phlox! This upright perennial bears fragrant, showy flowers in 4 to 8 inch wide, terminal clusters on erect stems with narrow, oval leaves. Flower colors range from white to pink or lavender. Blooms July to August, and through September with deadheading. Reaches 3 to 4 feet tall, and 1 to 3 feet wide. Grow in fertile, moist soil, in full sun to part shade. Good for beds and borders. Attracts butterflies and hummingbirds. paniculata (Fall phlox) #32254

Forked Blue Curls
Trichostema dichotomum


This dainty plant features small but exceptional intense blue flowers. Lower petals are distinctively spotted and the stamens and styles are long and curled.  Blooms August to October.  Grows in full to part-sun, in dry, sandy soils, and reaches heoght from 4 inches to over 2 feet tall.  Attracts hummingbirds for its nectar, and is of special value to native bees according to the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.

Hyssop Skullcap
Scutellaria incana


An underutilized gem, that adds an enticingly different flower form and cooling violet-blue to a sunny border or bright woodland at the height of summer heat, and continues into early fall. Small, two-lipped, purplish blue flowers bloom on branching, loose racemes July to September. Easily grown in average, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Grows 2 to 3 feet tall, and spreads 12 to 16 inches wide. Does best in dryish, sandy or clay soils. Drought tolerant.  Good in wildflower gardens, cottage gardens, native plant gardens, open woodland areas, or meadows. Attracts butterflies as well as hummingbirds. Makes a good cut flower.

Lyre Leaf Sage
Salvia lyrata


A great evergreen groundcover, with showy blue flowers in spring. Features whorls of two-lipped, lavender blue flowers (1 inch long) in upright, interrupted spikes, typically rising above the foliage to 1-2 feet tall. Blooms April to June. Leaves are somewhat "lyre-shaped" with an irregular purplish blotch in the center.  Reseeds easily in loose, sandy soils and can form a solid cover with regular watering that withstands mowing and can be walked on. Tolerates very light shade, but best in full sun, and prefers moist, sandy or clay soils. Good in borders, cottage gardens, native plant gardens, wild or naturalized plantings, or moist areas in low spots or along streams or ponds. Attractive to hummingbirds, butterflies and bees.

Meadow Blazing Star
Liatris ligulistylis


Adds vertical accent and bright late summer to fall bloom to your garden! Tall (3 to 5 foot) wands of brilliant rosy purple flowers open from densely packed crimson buds in August and September Thrives in full sun or partial shade and well-drained, even dry, soil. Good for rock gardens, and for massing in native plant and cottage gardens.  Also beautiful in borders, where it looks best planted in groups. Liatris is excellent for cutting and for drying, Attractive to hummingbirds, a favorite of many butterflies, and goldfinches enjoy the seeds in fall.

Oswego Tea
Monarda didyma

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Features spectacularly showy bright scarlet-red flower clusters grouped in dense heads at the tips of the stems, rising 2 to 4 feet tall. Flowers are long (up to 1½ inches) and narrow, and markedly two-lipped. Each flower head rests upon a whorl of showy, red-tinged, leafy bracts. Blooms July to August. Best grown in rich, medium to wet, moisture-retentive soils, in full sun to part shade. Provides color and contrast for the perennial border, wild garden, native plant garden, meadow, herb garden, naturalized planting or along ponds or streams. Attractive to bees, hummingbirds and butterflies, especially when massed. Nectar-rich flowers are pollinated primarily by ruby-throated hummingbirds and butterflies, especially fritillaries. Good for cutting. The toothed, aromatic leaves are used for teas and in salads.

 FERTILIZER TABLETS  Slow release 2-year fertilizer tablets for root feeding evergreen and hardwood seedlings and trees, shrubs, and fruit, flower and shade trees.  These long-lasting tablets are not water soluble, but depend on action of soil bacteria to convert nutrients into a plant usable form. Easy to use, completely non-burning and promotes vigorous growth. The tablet is simply dropped into the hole at the root zone of the plant at planting time (near, but not touching the roots). Tablets are 10 grams each, 20% Nitrogen, 10% Phosphoric Acid, 5% Potash.

COLLINS ORGANIC COMPOST  Produced locally!! 40 pound bags of premium quality soil amendment made from fully composted leaf and cow manure.  The compost is odor free, and rich in organic matter, slow release nutrients, and beneficial microbes.  Improves soil fertility, drainage, texture and moisture holding ability.  Additional benefits of using Collins Organic Compost include improved plant and root growth; prolonged release of nutrients to the soil; improved soil porosity and aeration; increased disease resistance; improved and stabilized soil pH; improved resistance to wind and water erosion; improved soil structure.  The perfect soil builder for many uses, including  residential gardens and lawns.  Also approved for use in organic production.  From Collins Powder Hill Farm in Enfield.

Check out these links for additional information about plant choices and landscaping:
UCONN Plant Database
Connecticut Botanical Society
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Edible Landscaping, National Gardening Association
Edible Flowers, What's Cooking America
Plants for a Future, Edible Uses
Alternatives for Invasive Ornamental Species, CT Agricultural Experiment Station
Celebrating Wildflowers, U.S. Forest Service


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