Native Plants

Native Plant List for Coastal South Carolina

This list of plants is composed only of plants native to the coastal plain of South Carolina, and was developed for Dewees Island. The plants are therefore somewhat tolerant of salty or brackish conditions and may not include all plants that would be appropriate for freshwater riparian areas. As native plants they require less water, fertilizer, and pesticides than non-native plants when planted in the appropriate locations.

Click here to check out a Clemson Extension's web site booklet on Reducing Deer Damage.


Acer rubrum Red Maple Decid Red fall color, fresh wet areas Feb-March
Carya glabra Pignut Hickory Decid Dry or moist areas
Carpinus caroliniana Ironwood Decid Smooth bark, moist areas
Celtis Laevigata Hackberry Decid Corky bark ridges
Magnolia grandiflora Southern Magnolia Evg Large fragrant white flowers May-June
Liriodendron tulipifera Tulip Poplar Decid Moist areas
Nyssa sylvatica Black Gum Decid Red fall color, moist or dry areas
Pinus elliottii Slash Pine Evg Low areas
Pinus palustris Longleaf Pine Evg Sandy areas
Pinus taeda Loblolly Pine Evg Throughout
Quercus coccinea Scarlet Oak Decid Dry areas
Quercus falcata Southern Red Oak Decid Dry areas
Quercus laurifolia Laurel Oak Evg Low or Sandy areas
Quercus phellos Willow Oak Decid Low areas
Quercus virginiana Live Oak Evg Dry or wet areas
Sabal palmetto Cabbage Palmetto Evg Dry or wet areas
Taxodium distichum Bald Cypress Decid Freshwater wet areas

Small Trees:

Aesculus pavia Red Buckeye Decid Red flowers,  fresh wet areas Apr.-May
Amelanchier canadensis Serviceberry Decid White flowers, red fruit Mar.-Apr.
Cercis canadensis Redbud Decid Lavender flowers, dry aeas Mar.-Apr.
Chionanthus virginicus Fringe Tree Decid Off-white flowers July-Sept.
Cornus florida Dogwood Decid White flowers, p.shade, red fall Mar.-Apr
Crataegus marshallii Hawthorn Decid White flowers, red fruit, wet areas Apr.-May
Crataegus uniflora Hawthorn Decid White flowers, red fruit, dry areas Apr.-May
Gordonia lasianthus Loblolly Bay Evg White flowers, wet areas July-Sept.
Hamamelis virginiana Witch-Hazel Decid Pale yellow flowers, dry areas Oct.-Dec.
Ilex opaca American Holly Evg Red berries
Ilex cassine Cassena Holly Evg Red berries, moist areas
Juniperus virginiana Red Cedar Evg Salt tolerant, dry or wet, blue fruit
Magnolia virginiana Sweetbay Magnolia Semi-Evg White flowers, moist areas Apr.-July
Malus angustifolia Crabapple Decid Pink flowers, throughout Apr.-May
Persea borbonia Red Bay Evg Used for cooking, moist areas
Prunus caroliniana Cherry Laurel Evg Cream flowers, throughout Mar.-Apr.
Sassafras albidum Sassafras Decid Red fall color, throughout
Sorbus arbutifolia Red Chokeberry Decid White flowers, red fruit, moist area Mar.-May
Symplocos tinctoria Horse Sugar Semi-Evg Cream flowers, sandy areas Mar.-May
Xanthoxylum clavaherculis Hercules Club Decid Thorns, Sandy areas


Baccharis halmifolia Salt Myrtle Evg Downy plumes, throughout Sept.-Oct.
Bumelia sp. Buckhorn Decid White flowers, dry areas June-July
Callicarpa americana Beauty-berry Decid Bright purple berries, pink flowers June-July
Cephalanthus occidentalis Button Bush Decid White flowers, wet areas June-Aug.
Clethra alnifolia Sweet Pepperbush Decid White flowers, fragrant, fresh wet areas Sept.-Oct.
Cyrilla racemiflora Titi Semi-Evg White flowers, moist areas May-July 2
Hypericum hypericoides St. Andrews Cross Semi-Evg Yellow flowers, dry areas May-Aug.
Hypericum stans St. Peter's-Wort Semi-Evg Yellow flowers, dry areas June-Oct.
Ilex cassine Dahoon Holly Evg Red berries, fresh wet areas
Ilex glabra Inkberry Evg Black berries, moist areas
Ilex verticillata Winterberry Decid Red berries, moist areas
Ilex vomitoria Yaupon Holly Evg Red berries, throughout
Itea virginica Virginia Sweetspire Decid White flowers, red fall color, moist, May-June
Leucothoe axillaris Leucothoe Evg White flowers, moist areas Mar.-May
Lyonia lucida Fetter Bush Evg Pink flowers, moist areas Apr.-June
Myrica cerifera Wax Myrtle Evg Blue fruit , fragrant, throughout
Osmanthus americana Wild Olive Evg Cream, flowers, dry areas Apr.-May
Rhododendron canescens Wild Azalea Decid Pink flowers, fresh wet-dry areas Mar.-May
Rhododendron atlanticum Dwarf Azalea Decid Pink flowers, moist-dry areas Apr.-May
Rhus copallina Winged Sumac Decid Red fall color, dry areas
Rosa carolina Wild Rose Decid Pink flowers, dry areas May-June
Rosa palustris Swamp Rose Decid Pink flowers, moist areas May-July
Sabal minor Shrub Palmetto Evg Moist areas
Sambucus canadensis Elderberry Decid White flowers, throughout Apr.-July
Serenoa repens Saw Palmetto Evg Low areas
Vaccinium arboreum Sparkleberry Evg Black berries, white flowers, dry Apr.-June
Vaccinium corymbosum Highbush Blueberry Decid Blue berries, white flowers, moist Feb.-May
Viburnum rufidulum Blue Haw Decid White flowers, dry areas Mar.-Apr.
Yucca aloifolia Spanish Bayonet Evg White flowers, dry sandy areas June-July
Yucca filamentosa Bear Grass Evg White flowers, dry areas Apr.-July

Flowering Perennials:

Aesclepias tuberosa Butterfly Weed Perenn Orange flowers, dry areas May-Aug.
Baptisia alba False Indigo Perenn White flowers Apr.-Sept.
Baptisia tinctoria False Indigo Perenn Yellow flowers Apr.-Sept.
Bidens laevis Beggar Ticks Perenn Yellow flowers, fresh wet areas Sept.-Nov.
Canna flaccida Golden Canna Perenn Yellow flowers, brackish wet areas May-July
Coreopsis angustifolia Tickseed Coreopsis Perenn Yellow flowers, moist areas Aug.-Oct.
Coreopsis falcata  Perenn Yellow flowers, moist areas May-July
Coreopsis helianthoides  Perenn Yellow flowers, moist areas Sept.-Oct.
Coreopsis lanceolata  Perenn Yellow flowers, dry areas Apr.-June
Coreopsis major  Perenn Yellow flowers, dry areas June-Aug.
Eupatorium coelestinum Wild Ageratum Perenn Blue flowers, dry or moist July-Oct
Erythrina herbacea Coral Bean Perenn Red flowers, red seed Apr.-July
Helianthus angustifolius Swamp Sunflower Perenn Yellow flowers, fresh wet July-frost
Helianthus strumosus  Perenn Yellow flowers July-Sept.
Hibiscus moscheutos Swamp Rose-mallow Perenn White-Pink flowers, fresh wet areas May-Sept.
Iris virginica Blue Flag Iris Perenn Blue flowers, fresh wetlands Apr.-May
Kosteletzkya virginica Seashore Marsh Mallow Perenn Pink flowers, wetlands June-Oct.
Liatris graminifolia Blazing Star Perenn Lavender flowers, dry areas Sept.-Oct.
Liatris spicata Blazing Star Perenn Lavender flowers, moist areas Sept.-Oct.
Mitchella repens Partridge Berry Perenn White flowers, p.shade May-June
Monarda punctata Horse Mint Perenn Pink flowers, dry July-Sept.
Nuphar luteum Yellow Pond Lily Perenn Yellow flowers, fresh wetlands Apr.-Oct.
Oenothera biennis Evening Primrose Perenn Yellow flowers, dry June- Oct.
Oenothera drummondii Beach Eve. Primrose Perenn Yellow flowers, dry Mar.-Nov.
Oenothera humifusa Dunes Eve. Primrose Perenn Yellow flowers, dry areas May-frost
Oenothera speciosa Evening Primrose Perenn Pink flowers, dry areas Apr.-July
Opuntia compressa Prickly Pear Cactus Perenn Yellow flowers, dry areas Apr.-June
Phlox carolina  Perenn Lavender, pink, or white flowers May-July
Pontederia cordata Pickerelweed Perenn Blue-purple flowers,  wetlands March-Oct
Rudbeckia fulgida Black-eyed Susan Perenn Yellow flowers, spreading, moist Aug.-Oct.
Rudbeckia hirta Black-eyed Susan Perenn Yellow flowers, dry areas May-July
Salvia coccinea Scarlet Sage Perenn Red flowers Feb.-Nov.
Salvia lyrata Lyre-leaved Sage Perenn Blue flowers, dry areas May-frost
Saururus cernuus Lizard's Tail Perenn Off-white flowers, fresh wetlands Apr.-July
Solidago rugosa Rough Goldenrod Perenn Yellow flowers, moist areas Aug.-Nov.
Solidago sempervirens Seaside Goldenrod Perenn Yellow flowers, moist or dry areas Aug.-Nov.
Tradescantia virginiana Spiderwort Perenn Blue flowers, moist or dry areas April-July
Verbena scabra Verbena Perenn Pink flowers, brackish margins May-Oct.
Verbena canadensis Pink Verbena Perenn Pink flower, low dry areas March-May

Grasses, etc:

Andropogon glomeratus Bushy Broomsedge Perenn Large plumes, moist areas Aug.-Oct.
Andropogon virginicus Broomsedge Perenn Gold fall color, throughout Sept.-Oct.
Arundinaria gigantea Cane Perenn Wet or dry, p. shade to shade Apr.-July
Calamagrostis cinnoides Reed Grass Perenn Wet areas July-Oct.
Dichromena latifolia Whitetop Sedge Perenn Wet-moist, white bracts May-Sept.
Muhlenbergia filipes Sweetgrass Perenn Pink plumes, dry-wet Oct.-Nov.
Panicum amarum Seaside Panicum Perenn Sand dune areas Oct.
Panicum virgatum Switch Grass Perenn Pink-purple plumes, wet areas June-Oct.
Setaria geniculata Foxtail Grass Perenn Graceful, dry areas May-Oct.
Setaria viridis Green Bristlegrass Ann Dry areas July-Oct.
Sorghastrum sp. Indian Grass Perenn Tall, graceful, dry areas Sept.-Oct.
Spartina patens Salt Hay Perenn Narrow blades, spreading,moist June-Sept.
Uniola paniculata Sea Oats Perenn Sand dune areas, oat-like seeds June-Sept.


Apios americana  Herb. Purple flowers, moist areas June-Aug
Bignonia capreolata Cross Vine Semi-Evg  Red/Orange flowers Apr.-May
Campsis radicans Trumpet Vine Decid Orange flowers June-July
Clematis crispa Leather Flower Herb. Moist areas, white flowers April-Aug.
Clematis reticulata  Herb. Dry areas, white flowers May-Aug.
Gelsemium sempervirens Yellow Jessamine Evg Fragrant, yellow flowers March-May
Lonicera sempervirens Coral Honeysuckle Evg Red Flowers/ Red Fruit March-July
Parthenocissus quinquefolia Virginia Creeper Decid Red fall color
Passiflora incarnata Passion Flower Decid Lavender flowers May-July


Adiantum capillus-veneris Venus' Hair Fern Decid Shady calcareous slopes
Athyrium asplenoides Southern Lady Fern Decid. Shade, moist
Dryopteris ludoviciana Southern Sheild Fern Decid Moist areas
Osmunda cinnamomea Cinnamon Fern Decid Moist areas
Osmunda regalis Royal Fern Decid. Moist areas
Polystichum acrostichoides Christmas Fern Evg Shade, moist