Is love in the air? Or is it just the anticipation of spring gardening? Either way, we’ve got native plant “couples” on the brain. With Valentine’s Day approaching, we asked some of our partners for their favorite pairings.

To help you research before matchmaking in your space, we’ve linked to an information page about each plant. Wise gardeners say… only fools rush in.

First up, a spring fling: roundleaf groundsel (Packera obovata) and wild sweet William (Phlox divaricata). This lovely woodland pair bloom together in April through May and would make a stunning mixed groundcover in full to partial shade.

Photo credit Sarah Beier

For some summer lovin’, try Valentine-inspired colors in the heat of July and August. Here, cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis) mingles with purple coneflowers (Echinacea purpurea), while a Liatris and bee balm (Monarda fistulosa) flirt around the edges. Relationships are so complicated…

Photo credit Jill DeWitt

If you’ve got a LOT of room in your heart (and in your yard), you might like prairie blazing star (Liatris pychnostachya) and Maximilian sunflower (Helianthus maximiliani).  The July-August blooms of the blazing star are gorgeously accented by the sunflowers’ leaf patterns, seen here.  Maximilian sunflower spreads vigorously from the roots – so take heed, as this is one love that can easily become overwhelming!

Photo credit Matt Bunch

Another interesting power couple is purple poppy mallow (Callirhoe involucrata) and blue wild indigo, (Baptisia australis).  Shown here with two wild indigo planted in one hole while the poppy mallow vines and intertwines.  They each get their time to shine, with the indigo’s purple giving way to the poppy mallow’s fuchsia as spring turns to summer.

Photo credit Paula Diaz

Can’t contain your native plant love?  Try container gardening!  What could be sweeter than wild sweet William (Phlox divaricata) and rose verbena (Glandularia canadensis) snuggled up together?

Hopefully, these have sparked your imagination, and an infatuation for some creative and beautiful native plant pairings. As the song says, money can’t buy me love… but it CAN buy some great native plants! Join us for our April 10th native plant sale, and prepare to fall back in love with your yard this spring.

Header photo: purple poppy mallow (Callirhoe involucrata) and white evening primrose (Oenothera speciosa) together in a dry sunny spot. Photo credit Matt Bunch.