Are you looking for native plants that can withstand the salty conditions of Central Florida? If so, you're in luck! There are a variety of native plants that are salt-tolerant and can thrive in this region. From saw palmetto to yucca plants, aguileña wildflowers, and gumbo-limbo trees, there are plenty of options to choose from. Saw palmetto is a native palm found throughout the Southeast. It is known for its ability to tolerate a variety of conditions and provides great textural interest under trees.
Landscaping with native plants is beneficial for the local ecosystem and helps prevent the spread of invasive species. In spring, saw palmetto produces bright red, tubular flowers, and in autumn, its seed pods break open to reveal bright red seeds (which are poisonous). Yucca plants have sharp, blade-shaped leaves that come in green or varied colors. They bloom with vertical clusters of white flowers in mid-summer or early fall.
This plant is especially good for North Florida and the coasts as it is resistant to cold and salt. Aguileña wildflowers come in many colors, but species native to Florida have interesting red and yellow flowers that attract hummingbirds. There are three native species of star anise in Florida: Illicium anisatum, Illicium floridanum (pictured), and Illicium parviflorum, with red, white or yellow flowers. Gumbo-limbo is a wind-tolerant tree native to South Florida and the Keys that can withstand frequent hurricanes in the area.
When selecting salt-tolerant native plants for your Central Florida landscape, it's important to consider the amount of salt present in the soil and irrigation water. Too much salt can be harmful to plants when easily absorbed and transported to leaves. However, with careful selection and proper maintenance, you can find the perfect native plants for your landscape.