Where to learn what's being lost

National and regional perspectives on at-risk plants

I would like to start planting more endangered plants in my garden - want to do my part to take them off the endangered list. Is there a list that I can obtain that shows the most endangered? If there is, where can I find a reputable source for this plant material? - K.F. -

Government databases have lists of what's threatened, endangered or of special concern in your area. In the U.S., use the threatened/endangered button on plants.usda.gov and then click on a State or States.


Alter other categories on that page as you wish to see only perennials or wetland plants, etc.



In Canada, do an Internet search using the terms

(your province name) government endangered speci

As examples, Ontario and Saskatchewan lists.

Below, a list we made after receiving the USDA list for Michigan. We selected species that we think can be grown in most gardens and are probably available at some nurseries. You may already be growing some of them. Some you may be very surprised to see on this list at all.

A sampler: Michigan's list, abridged

If you're not gardening in Michigan, go to the USDA site and call up your State's list, or check your Province's list. It's startling to see that a plant can be in big trouble in one place and fine "next door!"

There is a code following each plant name below.

T: threatened
E: endangerd
PREX: probably extirpated (wiped out! from this area although not from everywhere.)


Threatened and Endangered Species in Michigan

From 356 species listed by the USDA Plants Database, we extracted these which you may recognize from your garden or natural areas, or perhaps you included them in a wildflower meadow and natural woodland planting.

Allium schoenoprasum, wild chives T (threatened)FilipenduRub3297s.jpg
Artemisia ludoviciana,  white sage T
Calamagrostis stricta,  slimstem reedgrass T
Camassia scillioides, Atlantic camas T
Castanea dentata, American chestnut E (endangered)
Chasmanthium latifolium, Indian woodoats. northern sea oats T
Chelone obliqua, red turtlehead E
Dodecatheon meadia (Primula meadia), shooting star,
     pride of Ohio E
Echinacea purpurea, eastern purple coneflower
     PREX (presumed extirpated)
Eryngium yuccifolium, rattlesnake master, button eryngo T
Filipendula rubra, queen of the prairie T  (right)
Hydrastis canadensis, goldenseal T
Lactuca floridana, woodland lettuce T
Liatris punctata, dotted blazing star PREX (presumed extirpated)
Mertensia virginica, Virginia bluebells T
Mimulus glabratus michiganensis, Michigan monkeyflower, E
Monarda didyma, scarlet beebalm PREX (presumed extirpated)
Nelumbo lutea, American lotus T
Nuphar lutea pumila, yellow pond lily, E
Panax quinquefolius, American ginseng T
Phlox maculata, wild sweet William T
Polemonium reptans, Greek valerian, Jacob's ladder T
Polygonatum biflorum, smooth Solomon's seal
     PREX (presumed extirpated)
Ruellia humilis, wild petunia T
Sanguisorba canadensis, Canadian burnet T
Sarracenia purpurea heterophylla, purple pitcherplant T
Silphium laciniatum, compassplant T
Silphium perfoliatum, cup plant T
Tanacetum bipinnatum huronense, Huron tansy T
several Trillium T (not T. grandiflorum)
T. undulatum, painted trillium E
Wisteria frutescens, American wisteria T
Zizia aptera, meadow zizia T