Fernbank Museum is engaged in an extensive ecological restoration project to restore the balance of nature in Fernbank Forest. The process includes the removal of numerous nonnative, invasive species (NNIS) in order to allow the native species to flourish.
The NNIS that are found in Fernbank Forest are also quite common in home landscapes. Many of these species have been in North America for dozens or even hundreds of years, and it may be surprising to learn that they are nonnative and invasive. Many of these species spread readily into neighbors’ yards or natural areas (such as Fernbank Forest), where they can cause harm to the ecosystem.
The good news is there are many wonderful native plant species that will thrive in your home landscape without causing harm. Use the resources below to help identify any potential NNIS in your yard and find good native alternatives that can be planted and enjoyed for years to come.
Common Nonnative, Invasive Species in Georgia
This link to the Georgia Exotic Pest Plant Council provides a list of numerous NNIS that can be found in home landscapes across Georgia. Cross reference the plant species in your own yard with this list to see if any of your plants might be invasive species.
Native Alternatives to Nonnative, Pest Plants (also known as "Invasive Species")
This extensive list covers common NNIS and offers native plant alternatives that are available for purchase commercially for home landscaping.
Native Groundcover Alternatives to English Ivy
English Ivy is one of the most harmful invasive plant species in Fernbank Forest (and in the entire East Coast). This list provides some specific alternative native species that can be planted once English Ivy is removed (or before it is even planted).
For more information about Fernbank Forest restoration efforts or to learn more about how you can help out at home, contact us at Forest@FernbankMuseum.org.