15 Plants for Front Door Entrances (US Natives)

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Front door entrance plants
Using native plants for your front door entrance is a great way to support your local ecosystem and attract local wildlife. ProfReader, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Improving the entrance to your home can be as simple as incorporating native plants into your front door landscaping. Choosing flora from your local region not only ensures they are well-adapted to your climate but also brings a sense of place and natural beauty to your doorstep. Plus, supporting local ecosystems has the added benefit of attracting friendly wildlife, like birds and butterflies, right to your front door.

As a bonus, native species tend to require less maintenance, are more resistant to pests and diseases prevalent in their native region, and help maintain local biodiversity.

1) Eastern redbud (Cercis canadensis)

Blossoming eastern redbud tree
Eastern redbud’s stunning pink blooms can begin to appear as early as late winter! BETTY from MEMPHIS, TN, USA, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Your front door entrance can come alive with the addition of an eastern redbud tree. Known for its heart-shaped leaves and stunning pinkish-purple flowers, you’ll catch its vibrant colors bloom as early as late winter to early spring. This native gem grows medium in size, reaching about 20 – 30 feet tall and wide, making it a manageable yet striking choice for your entryway.

Planting one near your front door invites not just beauty but also wildlife, as birds like cardinals and quail enjoy the seeds. Ensure to water it well and consider a layer of mulch around its base to maintain moist, weed-free soil. With the eastern redbud’s moderate growth and remarkable floral display, your entrance will surely capture the attention of every passerby.

2) Coral bells (Heuchera spp.)

Potted coral bells
Coral bells aren’t fussy about soil, but ensuring they get 4 – 6 hours of sunlight a day will help them produce peak foliage color and bloom. Dominicus Johannes Bergsma, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Coral bells are a charming addition to your front entrance, blending style with easy care. You’ll love their dense mounds of foliage, with leaves that can range in color from silver to deep purple. They stay green through winter, bringing year-round appeal to your space.

These plants are adaptable and can thrive in a variety of light conditions, from full sun to shade. For peak foliage color and bloom, aim for at least 4 – 6 hours of sunlight a day. They’re not fussy about the soil either; rich, well-draining conditions are ideal, but they’ll tolerate clay or rocky soils.

Coral bells also attract butterflies and hummingbirds, adding dynamic life to your garden. Their delicate, bell-shaped flowers bloom in a spectrum of colors, making them a joy for any plant enthusiast. Plus, they’re resilient in USDA growing zones 3 to 9, so you can enjoy their beauty in many climates.

3) Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta)

Black-eyed Susan flowers
Black-eyed Susans grow best in areas with full sun, but they can tolerate partial shade too. Acabashi, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Your front door entrance will brighten significantly with the cheerful presence of black-eyed Susans. Their golden-yellow petals surround a dark brown center, creating a warm, welcoming sight for any visitor. Not only are these flowers a joy to behold, but they’re also incredibly hardy, making them a popular choice for gardeners seeking low-maintenance yet striking flora.

Planting these natives is a breeze. You can sow seeds directly into the soil in spring after any threat of frost has passed. They thrive in full sun but can tolerate partial shade, which gives you flexibility with your garden design. Make sure to give them enough room, as they’ll spread and create a full, lush display by your doorstep.

4) Blue false indigo (Baptisia australis)

Blue false indigo
Blue false indigo is a great choice if you wish to attract local pollinators, such as bees and butterflies. Joost J. Bakker / CC BY 2.0

Blue false indigo graces your front entrance with its shrub-like presence and striking blue flowers, welcoming visitors with its natural beauty. From May through June, its tall spires of blooms make a notable statement against the backdrop of any home, offering both aesthetic richness and ecological benefits.

You’ll appreciate that this perennial isn’t fussy about care. It can thrive in full sun to partial shade and isn’t particular about soil types, though well-drained ground suits it best. Once established in your garden, it shows remarkable drought tolerance, making it a low-maintenance choice for busy homeowners.

Your local pollinators will thank you for adding blue false indigo to your landscape. The plant serves as a nectar source for bees and butterflies, while also acting as a host plant for some species. Plus, it enriches your soil by fixing nitrogen, boosting the health of neighboring plants.

5) Wild geranium (Geranium maculatum)

Wild geranium in bloom
Wild geraniums are low-maintenance and can thrive in a variety of soil conditions! Cbaile19, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Wild geranium, or Geranium maculatum, is an excellent US native choice for your front entrance. With its showy pink to lilac flowers and deeply lobed foliage, it adds a touch of natural charm to your space. As a clump-forming perennial, it maintains a neat appearance without sprawling, staying contained and tidy.

You’ll be delighted to know that it’s a low-maintenance plant. It thrives in a range of soil conditions and can handle partial shade to full sun, so long as it gets enough moisture. In spring, the wild geranium blooms for an extended period, bringing a prolonged display of color to welcome you and your guests.

6) Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum)

Switchgrass transforms its appearance throughout the year, going from a green to a golden hue in the fall! Jebulon, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

If you’re aiming to bring a touch of the prairie to your front entryway, switchgrass is an excellent choice. Known scientifically as Panicum virgatum, this native perennial flourishes across North America, symbolizing the once vast tallgrass prairies.

You’ll appreciate switchgrass for its upright form and adaptability. Throughout the year, its appearance transforms, presenting lush green foliage in summer that transitions to golden hues in the fall. In midsummer, delicate, pink-tinged flower heads emerge, enhancing your entrance with a subtle flair.

Ideal for planting in full sun, switchgrass is also known for its resilience and low maintenance. It serves various beneficial roles, from erosion control to providing habitat for wildlife. Plus, it adds movement and texture to your landscaping, creating an inviting approach to your home.

7) Purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)

Purple coneflower
Purple coneflower is a hardy plant that thrives in moist, well-draining soils. Emőke Dénes, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

You’ll love adding purple coneflower to your front door garden for its simple charm and easy care. This hardy plant, also known as Echinacea purpurea, is native to the central and eastern United States and thrives in well-drained, moist soils. Your garden will become a hub for local wildlife, attracting butterflies like monarchs and native bees drawn to its nectar-rich blooms.

With flowers that exhibit a vibrant pinkish-purple hue, you’ll find they add a splash of color from early summer to mid-fall. Just seed these coneflowers in spring, and soon enough, you’ll witness a beautiful display. The added bonus? They’re drought-resistant once established, making them a low-maintenance option for busy gardeners.

8) Bluestem grass (Andropogon spp.)

Bluestem grass
Bluestem grass can add a natural, elegant look to your front door entrance, and it’s easy to maintain, too! T.Voekler, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Bluestem grass could bring a touch of the prairie to your front door. With varieties like little bluestem, you’re looking at a grass that’s not just pretty but also tough. Found natively in most states, this resilient plant adapts to a range of soil types. During spring and summer, it wears a blue-green hue, shifting to a bronze shade in the fall.

You’ll love watching bluestem grass’ tufted seed heads sway in the breeze, and so will the local songbirds, who often snack on them. This grass typically reaches 2 to 4 feet in height and enjoys spots with plenty of sunshine to some shade. Plant it for that natural, elegant look that’s easy to maintain.

9) Butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa)

Butterfly weed
Butterfly weed can grow to heights of up to 3 feet, making it a perfect choice for your front door entrance. Eric Hunt, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Your garden’s appeal can soar with the addition of butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa). This lively perennial brings a burst of bright orange to your doorstep. It’s the perfect host for monarch butterflies, which means you’ll be supporting these majestic creatures right at home. Butterfly weed can take the heat and thrive in full sun, loving those well-draining spots in your garden.

Planting this native is a breeze. You can start with seeds in the spring and, with minimal care, look forward to blossoms in the summer. Growing 1 to 3 feet tall, it’s just the right height for that sunny spot by your front door. And don’t worry about maintenance; this plant is a survivor, requiring little attention once established.

10) Eastern columbine (Aquilegia canadensis)

Eastern columbine flowers
Eastern columbine efficiently self-seeds, meaning that you don’t need to put much effort in if you want it to spread! Fritz Flohr Reynolds / CC BY-SA 2.0

If you’re thinking about adding a touch of natural charm to your front door entrance, the eastern columbine is a stellar choice. This native perennial brings a delightful splash of red and yellow to your garden with its unique, nodding flowers that are irresistible to hummingbirds and butterflies.

You’ll find it’s pretty easy-going when it comes to its living conditions. Preferring a bit of shade, it’ll thrive just as well in filtered sunlight. Plus, it’s not too fussy about soil; rocky or sandy spots are no trouble for it. Wondering about upkeep? This plant spreads its joy without much effort from you because it self-seeds efficiently. So, if you like low-maintenance plants that keep on giving, eastern columbine might just be your garden’s new best friend.

11) Virginia bluebells (Mertensia virginica)

Virginia bluebells
Virginia bluebells’ elegant blooms appear in the spring and recede as summer progresses. Christian Hummert (Ixitixel), CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Virginia bluebells should be on your radar if you’re looking for an elegant touch to your front door. Envision clusters of pendulous blue and pink flowers greeting you in early spring. These perennials thrive in a rich, moist woodland setting, yet they’re adaptable enough for your garden. You’ll be contributing to the ecosystem as well, as they’re a favorite of bees and butterflies.

They grow up to two feet tall and prefer shady spots. The beautiful foliage of Virginia bluebells recedes as summer progresses, making room for other plants to shine. So, when planning, think about companions that will fill in later in the season. Get ready for a stunning display each spring with this low-maintenance charmer.

12) Foamflower (Tiarella spp.)

Foamflower has few needs once established, only requiring consistent moisture and not much else! Photo by David J. Stang, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Foamflower, or Tiarella, creates a charming appearance at your front door. This US native plant flourishes in shady spots, emulating its natural habitat in cool deciduous forests. It’s perfect for that shaded area under trees or beside native shrubs.

Your maintenance efforts will be minimal, as foamflowers require consistent moisture but not much else. Plant them 12 to 18 inches apart with the crown at soil level to encourage proper growth. With their beautiful blooms in spring and mounding evergreen foliage, they’ll welcome you with delicate beauty all year round.

13) Joe-Pye weed (Eutrochium maculatum)

Joe-Pye weed
Joe-Pye weed is another low-maintenance plant that attracts bees and butterflies to your garden. Kor!An (Андрей Корзун), CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

If you’re aiming to attract pollinators to your entryway, Joe-Pye weed is your go-to. This native plant, with its pinkish-purple blooms, will add a touch of wild beauty to your front door. Joe-Pye weed thrives in full sun to light shade and prefers average to moist soil conditions.

Rest assured, it’s a breeze to care for. Just plant it in a spot where it can soak up some sun or enjoy a bit of dappled shade, and you’re set. Its hardy nature and long blooming period make it a perfect pick for a low-maintenance garden that stays lively with visiting butterflies and bees.

14) New England aster (Symphyotrichum novae-angliae)

New England aster in bloom
The New England aster is known for its vibrant hues, ranging from purple to pink to blue! Andrew Sebastian, CC BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Your garden will light up each fall with the rich hues of the New England aster. This perennial is a showstopper with its daisy-like blooms in varying shades of purple, pink, and blue, creating a beautiful contrast against its yellow centers. The flowers are not only a treat for your eyes but also a feast for local pollinators, such as butterflies and bees.

Tackling the cultivation of this native North American species is easy. Plant it in a sunny spot with well-draining soil, and you’ll see it reach heights of up to six feet. Remember to provide it with adequate space to grow, ensuring it adds depth and structure to your front door display. The New England aster is also known for its traditional use in soothing skin irritations when made into a topical salve, adding another layer to its appeal.

15) Virginia sweetspire (Itea virginica)

Virginia sweetspire
Virginia sweetspire is a shrub that brings a touch of elegance to your front door entrance. I, SB Johnny, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Your front door entrance will come alive with the addition of sweetspire. Native to the US, this appealing shrub graces any entryway with its arching branches and dark green leaves. You’ll be charmed by its drooping clusters of creamy white flowers that bloom in late spring to early summer. The fragrance is subtle but delightful.

Look forward to a spectacular display in fall when the foliage transforms into stunning shades of scarlet and crimson. Sweetspire is low-maintenance, thriving in full sun to partial shade, and adapts to various soil conditions. It’s the perfect final touch for a welcoming and lively front entrance.

Chris G
About the author

Chris G

Pond consultant and long-time hobbyist who enjoys writing in his spare time and sharing knowledge with other passionate pond owners. Experienced with pond installation, fish stocking, water quality testing, algae control and the troubleshooting of day-to-day pond related problems.

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