Replacement Plants for Buckthorn

Buckthorn replacement plants

What should you plant after removal of invasive European buckthorn?

Choose from a list of plant, shrub and tree replacements recommended by the Lake County Forest Preserves:  



Canada Anemone (Anemone canadensis): 1-2' H x 1'W...Tolerates wet conditions.
Wild Ginger (Asarum canadense) 6" H x 6-12" W... Prefers shade.
Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa): 2-3' H x 2-4' W... Prefers sunny conditions; Tolerates dry conditions.
   One of the showiest milkweeds with orange clusters of flowers and long, narrow leaves. It is drought-tolerant, will not move around much in the garden and is a host for pollinators.
Swamp Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata): 2-5' H x 2-3' W... Sunny and wet conditions.
Lady Fern (Anthyrium filix-femina): 2' H x 1' W... This hardy fern is a great perennial for borders and woodland.
Hairy Wood Mint (Blephilia hirsutus): 3' H x 18' W... Prefers shade.
Wild Hyacinth (Camassia schilloides): 6-12" H x 12" W... Prefers sunny locations.
Palm Sedge (Carex muskingumensis): 2-3' H x 1-2' W... Tolerates dry conditions.
Curly Wood Sedge (Carex rosea): 12"H x 12" W... Prefers shade.
Beak Grass (Diarrhena obovata): 2' H x 1' W... Prefers shade.
Pale Purple Coneflower (Echinacea pallida): 2-3' H x 1-2' W... Prefers sunny locations.
Bottlebush Grass (Elymus hystrix): 3-4' H x 1" W... Prefers shade.
Purple Lovegrass (Eragrostis spectabilis): 1-2' H x 1-2' W... Prefers sunny locations and dry conditions.
Big-leaf Aster (Eurybia macrophylla): 1' H x 1' W... Prefers shade.
Wild Geranium (Geranium maculatum): 1' H x 1' W... Prefers shade.
Rough Blazing Star (Liatris aspera): 2-3' H x 1-2' W...Prefers sunny locations.
Virginia Bluebells (Mertensia virginica): 2' H x 1-2' W... Prefers shade.
Solomon's Seal (Polygonatum biflorum): 2-4' H x 1-2' W...Prefers shade.
Wild Petunia (Ruellia humilis): 1-2' H x 1-3' W... Prefers sunny locations.
Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium): 2-4' H x 1-2' W... Prefers sunny location.
Prairie Dropseed (Sporobolus heterolepsis): 1-2' H x 2-3' W... Prefers sunny location.
Sky Blue Aster (Symphyotrichum oolentangiense): 2-3' H x 1-2' W... Prefers sunny location.
Golden Alexanders (Zizia aurea): 1-3' H x 2-3' W... Prefers full to partial sun.



Lead Plant (Amorpha canescens): 1-3' H x 1-3' W... Prefers sunny location.
Shrub Indigo (Amorpha canescens): 10-15' H x 15-20' W... Prefers sunny location.
New Jersey Tea (Ceanothus americanus): 2-4' H x 2-4' W... Prefers sunny location. Posies of white flowers transform into unique seed heads for winter interest on this densely rounded shrub.
Buttonbush (Cephalanthus occidentalis): 6-12'H x 12-18' W... Prefers shade.
Hazelnut (Corylus americana): 5-8' H x 5-10' W... Tolerates wet conditions.
Witchhazel (Hamamelis virginiana): 10-20' H x 15-20' W... Tolerates dry conditions.
Wild Hydrangea (Hydrangea arborescens): 3-5' H x 3-5' W...
Shrubby St. John's Wort (Hypericum prolificum): 3-5' H x 3-5' W... Tolerates dry conditions.
Winterberry (Ilex verticilata): 6-12' H x 6-8' W... Tolerates wet conditions.
Spicebush (Lindera benzoin): 6-12' H x 6-12' W... Tolerates wet conditions.
Ninebark (Physcarpus opulifolius): 5-10' H x 5-10' W... Tolerates dry conditions.
Fragrant Sumac (Rhus aromatica): 5-8' H x 8-10' W... Prefers sunny locations.
American Currant (Ribes americanum): 3-5' H x 3-5' W... Tolerates wet conditions. Fast-growing shrub with arching stems. Drooping yellow flowers mature into sweet-tart, edible fruit. Fall foliage is a lovely red.
Carolina Rose (Rosa carolina): 3-8' H x 4-6' W...Prefers sunny locations.   
Prairie Willow (Salix humilis): 5-8' H x 2-5' W...
Elderberry (Sambucus canadensis): 5-10' H x 5-10' W... Tolerate wet conditions.
Bladdernut (Staphylea trifolia): 10-15' H x 8-12' W... 
Early Low Blueberry (Vaccinium): 2-3' H x 2-4' W... This is one tough little shrub. White flowers in spring attract insects. Fruits appear in June and attract birds when ripe.
Nannyberry (Viburnum lentago): 15-20' H x 8-10' W... Excellent privacy hedge replacement. Has clusters of white flowers in summer and lovely red foliage in fall.
Blackhaw (Viburnum prunifolium): 12-15' H x 12-20' W...



Downy Serviceberry (Amelanchier arborea): 15-25' H x 10-12' W...Tolerate dry conditions.
Allegheny Serviceberry (Almelanchier laevis): 15-25' H x 15-25' W
Blue Beech (Carpinus caroliniana): 20-25' H x 15-20' W... Mid-sized trees with smooth, gray bark. This tree grows well in different soils and pH.
Redbud (Cercis canadensis): 20-30' H x 25-35' W... Attractive multi-stemmed tree with heart-shaped leaves. Magenta flowers in spring transform into unique pea pods.
Pagoda Dogwood (Cornus alternifolia): 15-25' H x 20-30' W
Cockspur Hawthorn (Crataegus crus-galli): 20-25' H x 20-25' W
Downy Hawthorn (Crataegus mollis): 20-30' H x 20-40' W... Hardy hawthorn with distinct lateral branching, soft fuzzy leaves and showy white flowers followed by red fruits.
Ironwood (Ostrya virginiana): 40-45' H x 20-30' W
Chokecherry (Prunus virginiana): 20-25' H x 15-20' W
Staghorn Sumac (Rhus typhina): 15-25' H x 15-25' W
Arborvitae (Thuja occidentalis): 30-60' H x 10-15' W... This is a hardy, versatile evergreen. The narrow profile make it a nice choice for windbreaks. It requires very little care when used as a hedge.



American Beech (Fagus grandifolia): 50-80' H x 50-70' W
White Pine (Pinus strobus): 80-120' H x 20 - 40' W
White Oak (Quercus alba): 60-100' H x 100' W... Stately, long-lived oak found in every county of Illinois. Features light gray bark and rounded leaves that turn a rich red in fall.
Red Oak (Quercus rubra): 60-100' H x 100' W
Basswood/ Linden (Tilia americana): 60-9-' H x 30-60' W
Canadian Hemlock (Tsuga canadensis): 40-70' H x 25-35' W


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