Bird-Friendly Native Plants

Native plants providing the necessary foods birds need to survive and thrive

Photo: Will Stuart

"It's simple: By gardening with native plants, no matter where you live or how small or large your space is, you can help sustain wildlife." - Doug Tallamy, Bringing Nature Home

Your yard -- and the kinds of plants in it -- matters more than you may know. Native plants play a very important role in providing the food birds need to survive and thrive in a way that non-native plants cannot do. 

Going Native
Native plants are those that occur naturally in an area. North Carolina, with its diverse geography, is home to thousands of native plant species! Our natural wildlife - including birds - have adapted to the resources provided by North Carolina's native plant population. These plants and trees are, in a real sense, home for our birds.

The current population of native plants is becoming displaced by non-native, exotic and often vigorously growing species. These invasive exotic plants encroach on natural habitats and do not provide the nutrients many birds need to survive.

Why are native plants important?
In a word: insects... Almost all land birds require insects to feed their young. Even seed-eating birds often must feed their babies insects to ensure their survival. Insects cannot adapt to eating non-native plants. Less native plants means less insects, which in turn means fewer bird babies growing to adulthood. 

Where to find native plants?
Below, you will find a list of recommended and approved nurseries in North Carolina that specialize in selling native seeds and plants. These retailers are all participating partners of Audubon North Carolina's Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year program. 

Why Go Native for Birds
Bird-Friendly Native Plants

Why Go Native for Birds

Native plants play a very important role in providing the food birds need to survive and thrive.

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Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year List
Bird-Friendly Native Plants

Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year List

The Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year list is here! Download it now.

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Find Bird-Friendly Native Plants Retailers
Bird-Friendly Native Plants

Find Bird-Friendly Native Plants Retailers

Find a retailer near you that carries the Native Plants of the Year

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Bird-Friendly Native Plants Lists
Bird Friendly Native Plants Lists

Bird-Friendly Native Plants Lists

Find all the resources you need to make your backyard bird friendly. Download list of native plants that work for your area.

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Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year: For Gardeners
Bird-Friendly Native Plants

Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year: For Gardeners

We’re partnering with local plant nurseries and growers to offer more bird-friendly native plants to add to your garden to help our birds.

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Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year: For Growers and Retailers
Bird-Friendly Native Plants

Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year: For Growers and Retailers

We are creating a local base of buyers for native plants, and now we need YOU – our local growers and nurserymen.

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Native Plant Brochures Now Available in Spanish
Bird-Friendly Native Plants

Native Plant Brochures Now Available in Spanish

We are excited to announce that all three of our regional native plants for birds brochures (mountain, piedmont and coast) are now available in Spanish

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Native Plant Profiles
Native Plant Profiles

Native Plant Profiles

Get information on how to make your favorite native plants thrive in your bird-friendly garden.

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Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year Program
Bird-Friendly Native Plants

Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year Program

Audubon North Carolina's Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year program works to bring back native plants that specifically benefit birds, our environment and our local economy.

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Learn More About Bird-Friendly Native Plants

Bringing Nature to North Carolina
Bird-Friendly Communities

Bringing Nature to North Carolina

Read a special interview with Doug Tallamy, author of "Bringing Nature Home".

What monsters are lurking in your yard?
Bird-Friendly Native Plants

What monsters are lurking in your yard?

This Halloween, go on an invasive plant hunt and eliminate these nasty plants from your yard.

Meet the 2018 Bird-Friendly Dirty Dozen
Bird-Friendly Native Plants

Meet the 2018 Bird-Friendly Dirty Dozen

Meet your Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year for 2018!

Elect The Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year
Bird-Friendly Communities

Elect The Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year

Help finalize our 2018 Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year list by casting your vote! Our native plant experts have complied a list of NC native plant candidates, and now it’s up to YOU to vote for the winners.

Plant Fringe Tree for Three-Season Appeal
Native Plant Profiles

Plant Fringe Tree for Three-Season Appeal

Plant a Fringe Tree to have a three-season stunner in your bird-friendly backyard.

Communities Come Together to Benefit Birds
Bird-Friendly Communities

Communities Come Together to Benefit Birds

Two Planting Events Provide Bird-Friendly Gardens for Citizens to Enjoy.

Enjoy A Living Bird Feeder with Little Bluestem
Native Plant Profiles

Enjoy A Living Bird Feeder with Little Bluestem

Planting Little Bluestem in your yard is like planting a living bird feeder. Learn more about this plant featured on our 2016 Bird-Friendly Native Plant of the Year list.

A River Birch Oasis
Native Plant Profiles

A River Birch Oasis

If you have space to plant just one tree to feed your birds, you can’t go wrong with the River Birch, one of our 2016 Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year.

Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year List
Bird-Friendly Native Plants

Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year List

The Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year list is here! Download it now.

Sweetbay Magnolia: Adding Life to Your Garden
Native Plant Profiles

Sweetbay Magnolia: Adding Life to Your Garden

The Sweetbay Magnolia is among our Bird-Friendly Native Plants of the Year for 2016. Find this and other plants at your local participating retailer.

How you can help, right now