Native Plants in Florida

The native plants in Florida are well-adapted to its climate. Florida's tropical climate is mild to warm throughout the year, with temperatures ranging from mid-50s to the mid-80s, sunny most of the time with a rainy season at the end of winter and during the summer. Native Florida plants require low maintenance because of their ability to thrive well in their natural environment. Some native plants are found in neighboring southern states, while others are endemic to or only grow in Florida.

Cedar Southern Red

Cedar Southern Red (Juniperus silicicola) is an evergreen native to Florida grows to 45 feet in height. A member of the Cupressaceae family, this hardy and drought-tolerant tree does well in different types of well-drained soil, enjoys full or partial sun and partial shade conditions. Cedar Southern Red (or Cedar Southernred) adds classic beauty to its landscape and its dense foliage acts as a screen and a windbreaker.

Saw Palmetto

The distinct tropical appearance of Saw palmetto's wide, palmate leaves connects the Floridian landscape to the tropics. Saw palmetto (Serenoa repens) comes in green and blue varieties, each reaching 8 feet in height and thriving well in the sun and partial shade. It is a member of the Aracaceae family. Saw palmetto is a hardy evergreen palm that does well in a wide range of soil pHs, salt content and dry soil conditions. Other common names for saw palmetto include cabbage palm and American dwarf palm tree.


Amongst the native plants in Florida that give the Floridian landscape a rain forest feel is the fern-like foliage of the Coontie (Zamia floridana) plant. It belongs to the Zamiaceae family. It grows up to 4 feet in height and does well in all sun exposures. Another hardy evergreen that does well in dry soil, Coontie tolerates salt and soil pH ranges very well. Coontie is also called Florida arrowroot.

Golden Creeper

A cold-sensitive, native evergreen shrub, golden creeper (Ernodea littoralis) grows only to 2 feet in height. Golden creeper belongs to the family Rubiaceae and does well only in full sun. It does well in alkaline and dry soil and tolerates salt well in its native coastal habitat. Golden creeper produces light pink flowers, and is also known as beach creeper and coughbush.

Florida Greeneyes

A hardy, endemic Floridian wildflower, greeneyes (Berlandiera subacaulis) produces yellow flowers that grow to only 1 foot tall. Florida greeneyes belongs to the Asteraceae family, and they do well in sun and partial shade. It tolerates a wide range of soil pH but does not thrive in salt soil conditions. Florida greeneyes does well in moist soil conditions.

Keywords: native plants, Florida foliage, Floridian plants

About this Author

Naima Manal has been a freelance writer, teacher and homeschooling mom since 1993. She received her Bachelor of Science in biology/pre-medical studies from Molloy College in 1994. Since beginning her professional writing career in 2007, Manal writes about heath, diet and nutrition, alternative medicine, education, parenting, crafts, home and garden and home improvement.