Native Plant Identification Help

Congratulations! You have decided to start incorporating native plants into your garden and now the real work begins. This resource page is here to help not only identify a plant, but also determine if it is native and how to report it if it is invasive. Unfortunately, there isn’t just one app or program that you can use to do all of the above but each step is important.

Find the Name

You found a plant on a hike or there is one growing in your garden and you just have to know what it is. We understand, we have been there. So, first off let’s figure out the plant’s name, preferably the scientific name. Now is the time to decide, do you want to flip through a book or upload photos to a digital program. Neither option is wrong and maybe you want both options. So here are a few recommendations:

Find the Status

Now that the plant has a name, the work is not done just yet. Most of the computer based programs will only provide a name for the plant, but not necessarily if it is native or not. Even when using the books suggested above, they can cover too vast of an area to effectively highlight the amazing native ecosystems we have in New York. This is why we suggest using the New York Flora Atlas to determine if the range really does reach NY. This website was created and is maintained by local specialists. Check out the step by step instructions we created.

One Last Step

This step is really only necessary if you think the plant you have identified is an invasive species. Capital Region PRISM helps monitor invasive species in our area. They ask that we use iMapinvasives to report our findings. Go to the website first to create an account as it requires an email verification. Then you can submit your findings on the app.