Native Plants for Easy Gardening in Knoxville, TN

Using native plants in landscaping is not a new concept. Native plants tend to thrive in their home environment. They work well with pollinators in the area, provide food or shelter to local wildlife, and bring biodiversity back to areas that need it. The next time you’re looking for new plants for your home, shop for these native plants and give your garden that classic natural look.

Butterfly Milkweed

This coarse perennial consists of bright green leaves with brilliant large clusters of orange flowers. While this plant is normally used as an ornamental piece, its bright color is famous for attracting butterflies, especially Monarchs.

Virginia Bluebells

This beautiful piece of foliage is a midwest classic and features colors not normally found in the area. With light pink bud clusters that open up into light blue trumpet shaped flowers, this plant has a unique look. This species looks great in clusters and blooms from March until June.

Wild Geranium

As an ornamental perennial, the wild geranium shows off its flowers with beautiful shades of pink and lavender. Blooming from March to July, these flowers also attract a great deal of butterflies and other pollinators to an area, and perform well in almost any soil conditions.

Bottlebrush Buckeye

This round shaped deciduous shrub can grow between 6 to 12 feet tall. Consisting of long spikes and white feathery flowers, this shrub is more resistant than most buckeye shrubs to diseases and insects—usually maintaining its foliage through the fall. Its leaves also become very colorful during this season. Long spikes of flowers attract hummingbirds and many varieties of butterflies.

Red/Black Chokeberry

Reaching heights of 6 to 12 feet tall, these shrubs go through beautiful stages every season. During the spring, small clusters of white flowers bloom all over the plant. These give way to deep orange and red leaves in the fall and small red berries which remain until December or January. During the winter, the light brown bark provides a nice color to any garden landscape. Requires plenty of sunlight.


Another deciduous shrub that matches the landscape, spicebushes can grow 6 to 12 feet tall and grow dense clusters of tiny yellow flowers. These flowers can be followed by a glossy red fruit which is incredibly fragrant. As an added benefit to this shrub, a tea can actually be made from its aromatic leaves.


This loose shrub features 12 foot long arched branches with white flowers in broad flat clusters that bloom from May to July. Dark, purple berries will also grow around this time. They are in fact edible and can be made into jellies and wines. Elderberries also grow well in partly shady areas.

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