Wherever you live, so do native plants. Ranging from grasses to fruit trees to all types of wildflowers, native plants are great choices for your landscaping projects because they are very carefree. After they become established, wildflowers and other natives don't need human help---so you're free to relax and enjoy your garden without having to water, fertilize and deadhead your native vegetation. The best way to propagate native plants is from seed, but in some cases root division or cuttings give you the best results.
Propagating Native Plants
Collect seeds from wild plants in fall or order them from specialty catalogs (see Resources). If you collect seeds from wild stands of native plants, be sure not to take them all.
Clear an area in your yard by removing all weeds, grass and other plants that might shade or compete with young native plants.
Start seeds in pots or flats, using regular potting soil. Scatter seeds on top of the soil and then gently pat them down with the palm of your hand.
Outdoors, scatter seeds lightly on top of the cleared area and then pat them down with your hand. Think how nature does it and try to emulate that process. Water the area well and keep it moist until your young seedlings are several inches tall.
Thin seedlings to four or five inches apart, depending on the species you are growing and the adult height they will attain. For example, California poppies can grow close together, but a native walnut tree will need 10 or more feet between plants.
Transplant plants you started in pots or flats when they are 3 to 4 inches tall. However, many natives do not transplant well, so direct seeding into the garden is recommended.
Propagate some types of plants from cuttings --- the seeds of some varieties are small, difficult to handle or require special propagation techniques such as cold or heat stratification. The quaking aspen tree is an example of this type of plant.
Propagate some plants by root division. Ferns are an example of a type of plant that responds well to this method because their spores are tiny and difficult to begin. Simply dig up a clump of the plant you want and then gently pull off a piece from the root ball and then plant it in the appropriate environment for the type of plant.