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Top 5 Native Pollinator Perennials

Category: Pollinators | Posted by: White Oak Gardens
Joe Pye Weed

When it comes to creating a vibrant and eco-friendly garden in Cincinnati, OH, choosing native pollinator perennials is a winning strategy. These plants not only add beauty and color to your landscape but also play a crucial role in supporting local wildlife, especially pollinators like bees and butterflies.

At White Oak Gardens, we’ve curated a list of the top 5 native pollinator perennials that thrive in our region:

1. Liatris

Liatris, commonly known as Blazing Star, is prized for its tall spikes of vibrant purple or white flowers that bloom in mid to late summer. These spikes make a striking addition to any garden bed. Butterflies and bees are particularly drawn to Liatris for its nectar-rich blooms, making it a vital plant for supporting pollinator populations. Plant Liatris in well-draining soil and full sun for best results. They are drought-tolerant once established, making them a low-maintenance choice for your garden.


2. Garden Phlox

Garden Phlox is cherished for its clusters of fragrant, star-shaped flowers that bloom from summer into fall. They come in a variety of colors including pink, purple, and white. Butterflies and hummingbirds flock to Garden Phlox for its abundant nectar, making it a delightful addition to butterfly gardens. Provide Garden Phlox with rich, moist soil and regular watering. Deadhead spent blooms to encourage continuous flowering throughout the season.

Garden Phlox

3. Turtlehead

Turtlehead, also known as Chelone, features unique snapdragon-like flowers that resemble the head of a turtle. They bloom in late summer and early fall. Turtlehead attracts butterflies and bees with its nectar-rich flowers, thriving particularly well in moist, shaded areas. Plant Turtlehead in part shade and keep the soil consistently moist. It’s an excellent choice for rain gardens or along the edges of ponds and streams.


4. Coneflower

Coneflower, a quintessential prairie plant, is known for its daisy-like flowers with prominent, cone-shaped centers. They bloom from early summer to fall. Bees, butterflies, and even birds are attracted to Coneflower. The seeds provide food for birds during the winter months. Plant Coneflower in well-drained soil and full sun. Deadhead spent blooms to promote prolonged flowering and leave some seed heads for winter interest.


5. Joe Pye Weed

Joe Pye Weed is a robust perennial with tall, erect stems and clusters of fluffy, pinkish-purple flowers that bloom in late summer. Butterflies, bees, and other pollinators are drawn to Joe Pye Weed for its abundant nectar and pollen. Grow Joe Pye Weed in moist, fertile soil and full sun to part shade. It’s an excellent choice for naturalistic plantings and rain gardens.

Joe Pye Weed

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