The plants on this list were selected using the Cultural Guide in Prairie Moon Nursery’s catalog. Determinations as to moisture and light needs/tolerances are those of Prairie Moon Nursery. The catalog lists additional versatile species. Plants listed are shown in at least two light levels out of three, and three moisture levels out of five. (Data may change from year to year.) A number of the species also have plant-insect interactions.

  • Plants shown in all three light categories are shown with an ‘+’.
  • Plants shown in four (or more) soil moistures are indicated with an ‘*’.
  • Plants favoring Moist (MO), Mesic (ME) or Dry (DR) habitats are shown.

NOTE 1: Some scientific names have changed. This list is using the older, more familiar names. (Aster rather than symphyotrichum, for instance)

NOTE 2: Even though all these plants will grow in various conditions, many will favor one soil type over another, or one light condition over another. Also, similar but less adaptable plants may be a better choice for your site. The Prairie Moon catalog/website will have more information on the plants.

Ag – Aggressive plant
Rhiz – Plant spreads by rhizomes
Ann – Annual

Genus/Species (Common name) Genus/Species (Latin name) Habitat
Yellow Giant Hyssop Agastache nepetoides ME
Purple Giant Hyssop Agastache scrophulariaefolia ME
* + Wild Garlic Allium canadense Four
Nodding Wild Onion Allium cernuum ME
Praire Onion Allium stellatum DR
Wild Leek Allium tricoccum ME
Thimbleweed Anemone cylindrica DR
+ Columbine Aquilegia canadensis DR
* Common Asclepias syriaca (Ag, Rhiz) Four
Rose/Swamp Asclepias incarnata MO
Whorled Asclepias verticillata (Rhiz) DR
Heath Aster ericoides (Rhiz) DR
* Forked Aster furcatus Four
Smooth blue Aster laevis ME
+ Calico/Side-flowering Aster lateriflorus ME
* New England Aster novae-angliae Four
Sky blue Aster oolentanglense DR
* White Wild Indigo Baptisia alba Four
Cream Wild Indigo Baptisia bracteata DR
Downy Wood Mind Blephilia ciliata DR
Wild Hyacinth Camassia scilloides ME
Partridge Pea Chamaecrista fasciculata (Ann) DR
Prairie Coreopsis Coreopsis palmata (Rhiz) DR
Tall Coreopsis Coreopsis tripteris ME
White Prairie Clover Dalea candidum DR
Purple Prairie Clover Dalea purpurea DR
Showy Tick Trefoil Desmodium canadense ME
+ Shooting Star Dodecatheon meadia ME
Pale Purple Coneflower Echinacea pallida DR
Purple Coneflower Echinacea purpurea ME
Cream gentian Gentiana flavida ME
* Prairie Smoke Geum triflorum DR
Western Sunflower Helianthus occidentalis (Ag, Rhiz) DR
Pale-leaved Sunflower Helianthus strumosus (Ag, Rhiz) ME
* Prairie Alumroot Heuchera richardsonii Four
Spotted Touch-me-not Impatiens capensis (Ann, Ag) MO
+ Dwarf Crested Iris Iris cristata (Rhiz) MO
Blue Flag Iris Iris versicolor (Rhiz) MO
Round-headed Bush Clover Lespedeza capitata (Rhiz) DR
Button Blazing Star Liatris aspera DR
Prairie Blazing Star Liatris pychnostachya MO
Marsh Blazing Star Liatris spicata MO
Michigan Lily Lilium michiganense MO
Great Blue Lobelia Lobelia siphilitica MO
Prairie Loosestrife Lysimachia quadrifolia MO
* Wild Bergamot Monarda fistulosa Four
* + Hairiy Beardtongue Penstemon hirsuta Four
* Wild Blue Phlox Phlox divaricata (Rhiz) ME
* Prairie Phlox Phlox pilosa Four
Obedient Plant Physostegia virginiana (Rhiz) MO
+ Jacob’s Ladder Polemonium reptans ME
Slender Mountain Mint Pycanthemum tenuifoleum (Rhiz) ME
Mountain Mint Pycanthemum virginianum (Rhiz) Four
* Black-eyed Susan Rudbeckia hirta Four
+ Wild Golden Glow Rudbeckia laciniata (Ag, Rhiz) MO
Sweet Black-eyed Susan Rudbeckia subtomentosa ME
Brown-eyed Susan Rudbeckia triloba ME
Prairie Ragwort Senecio plattensis MO
Maryland Senna Senna marilandica ME
Starry Campion Silene stellata ME
* Compass Plant Silphium laciniatum Four
Prairie Dock Silphium terebinthinaceum ME
* + Solomon’s Plume Smilacina racemosa (Rhiz) Four
* + Starry Solomon’s Plume Smilacina stellata (Rhiz) Four
* + Grass-leaved Goldenrod Solidago graminifolia (Ag, Rhiz) Five
* Stiff Goldenrod Solidago rigida Four
Showy Goldenrod Solidago speciosa DR
* Ohio Spiderwort Tradescantia ohiensis Four
Blue Vervain Verbena hastata MO
Culver’s Root Veronicastrum virginianum ME
+ Common Blue Violet Viola sororia ME
Golden Alexander Zizia aurea ME
* Big Bluestem Andropogon gerardii Four
* Little Bluestem Andropogon scoparius DR
Side-Oats Grama Bouteloua curtipendula DR
Prairie Brome Bromus kalmii ME
* Canada Wild Rye Elymus canadensis Four
Silky Wild Rye Elymus vilosus ME
+ Virginia Wild Rye Elymus virginicus MO
* Switch Grass Panicum virgatum Four
Indian Grass Sorghastrum nutans DR
* Northern Dropseed Sporobolus heterolepis Four
Prairie Sedge Carex bicknelii ME
+ Commom Bur Sedge Carex grayi MO
+ Palm Sedge Carex muskingumensis ME
+ Penn’s sedge Carex pennsylvanica DR
Long-beaked Sedge Carex sprengelii ME
* Brown Fox Sedge Carex vulpinoidea Four