Natural Shore Technologies |  612-703-7581 
May Article

Our Retail Nursery Opening Day- We Can't Wait!



On May 22nd our retail nursery will open for the year. It will once again be filled with locally grown Minnesota native plants. It will house thousands of prairie, woodland, wetland, and lakeshore plants ready to provide a variety of functions for our natural areas. Conveniently located off of highway 12 in Maple Plain, 10 minutes west of Wayzata, our retail nursery is just a short drive from the Twin Cities! Here are just a few reasons why you need to come check us out this year:


Our retail nursery carries over 100 species of flowers and grasses that are native to Minnesota! This species selection will allow you to plant natives in any gardening situation. 


Have a shady wooded area? Try our Columbine, Thimbleweed, or Zigzag Goldenrod.  Have a dry sunny area you want to turn into a prairie? We have Butterfly Milkweed, Pale Purple Coneflower, Rough Blazing Star, Prairie Tickseed, and all the grass species you'll need! Be it wet or dry, sunny or shady, we have a variety of species that will flourish at even the most challenging sites.  We also have several species of native trees and shrubs available!


Our cheerful and knowledgeable staff will help you make your important plant selections.  Not sure what plants will do best in your specific soil types, moisture conditions, sun or shade?  Do you want to know which species will flower during the fall? Or what plants will attract the most bees and butterflies? Our retail nursery is staffed by some great native plant experts. Shirley Mah Kooyman is a Master Gardener and Vice- President of the Minnesota Native Plant Society. She will give you all the information you want about native plants!  Jill Langer is our nursery manager with over 20 years of native plant gardening experience.  They both know the ins and outs of a successful native planting and will ensure you walk away with plants that will meet your specific project needs!


Our plants are locally grown, healthy, robust, and most importantly, pesticide free! Every year in our retail nursery we find dozens of monarch caterpillars munching away on our milkweed plants. Milkweed is their host plant and we let them dine away on as much as they want.  These little guests appreciate the free lunch without the threat of harmful pesticides, such as neonicotinoids.  The many beautiful species of butterflies and bees that fly in and out of the retail nursery every year also enjoy the wide variety of flowers. 


Please make plans to come visit us for our opening day May 22nd!  We will also be open May 29th-31st where Heather Holm, author of Pollinators of Native Plants, will be signing her book. Hours are from 10am to 4pm. Check out our website for other sale dates and hours this season. Don't forget to bring your coupon for a free Butterfly Milkweed Plant! (See the bottom of this newsletter).

Retail Nursery News
Our Retail Nursery is reopening! 
Join us May 22nd 10 am - 4pm for its Grand Re-opening! (see coupon below)
We will also be open from May 29th-31st from 10am -4pm with Heather Holm, author of Pollinators of Native Plants, doing a book signing on Saturday May 31st!
Click and visit our website for current
Native Plant of the Month
Golden Alexander
Zizia Aurea

Moisture: Moist or Dry

Exposure: Full or Partial Sun

Bloom: April- June

Color: Yellow

Height: 1-3 ft.


 Description: An easy to care for perennial with attractive bright yellow flowers.  Golden Alexander has coarse fibrous roots.  Its stems smooth and shiny, frequently with reddish tinge.  The leaves are compound with the upper leaves divided into 3 parts and each part is further divided into 3 leaflets with finely toothed margins.  Flowers are in flat clusters at terminal ends of flower stalks.  Plant blooms for about a month.  Grows in full sun or part sun in moist sites but will tolerate dry conditions.  Found in swamps, moist to mesic woodlands, moist prairies, and moist meadows.  Attractive to butterflies, bees, and wasps.  Plant is larval plant for swallowtail butterflies.  Roots used medicinally by Native Americans.  Other common names are golden alexanders and golden zizia.

Invasive Plant of the Month

Dame's Rocket

Hesperis matronalis

Copyright 2008 K. Chayka


Exposure: Partial Shade/ Shade

Moisture: Moist

Height: 2-4 feet

Blooms: May-July


Description: A biennial/perennial from Europe Dame's Rocket is often confused with the native Phlox. The flowers are white or pink and have four petals (Phlox has five). It is a short-lived perennial that reproduces by seed in shaded damp areas like stream banks and roadsides. The leaves are opposite with teeth and tiny hairs. It forms dense stands that can choke out native species and also host several crop viruses.  It is often found in commercial "wildflower" mixes aiding in its dispersal. Infestations can be hand pulled but make sure the seed heads are disposed of to prevent further spread. Larger infestations can be sprayed with select herbicides. 

Pollinator of the Month

Long Horned Bees

Melissodes spp.

Photo by Heather Holm


Range: North and South America

Habitat: Fields and Meadows

Identification: These are medium sized bees that are solitary and nest in the ground. Males have longer antennae than the females. They are very hairy. Some species have light colored bands on their abdomens.  


Pollination: Long Horned Bees collect pollen and nectar from a variety of native plants including Prairie Coreopsis, Harebell, Pale Purple Coneflower, Wild Bergamot, Horsemint, Grey Headed Coneflower, Black Eyed Susan, Hoary Vervain, Virginia Mountain Mint, and many more! These types of bees are also important to watermelon and commercial sunflower pollination!


Want to learn more about pollinators and Native Plants? Buy Heather Holm's book Pollinators of Native Plants, available on Amazon and at Natural Shore's Retail Nursery!

Employee of the Month

Michele Hanson


Natural Shore welcomes Michele to our marketing and sales team. Michele comes to us after working the last six years as a Regional Planner for all divisions of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Before that Michele worked at the Rice Creek Watershed and Ramsey Washington Metro Watershed where she met Bill and Rob. Her educational background is a degree from the University of Minnesota in Landscape Architecture. In her free time she loves to travel and fly-fish with her husband. 

May 2014 Issue
Our Company
Upcoming Events!
Join us at these events!

Minnetonka Native Plant Market and Eco-Fun Fest June 4th 3pm-7pm

Landscape Revival: Native Plant Expo and Market June 7th
1201 Larpenteur Ave W NE, Roseville    

Cedar Lake Plant Sale June 7th 10am-12pm
8986 84th St. NW, Annandale
Our Native Plants
Minnnesota Native Plant Brand ensures that plant species are native to Minnesota. 
Garden Tours
Natural Shore is now hosting FREE field trips for Garden Clubs with 10 or more members. Come join our Native Plant Specialist Shirley Mah Kooyman for a 1 hour lecture and tour of our retail nursery in Maple Plain! Your club will get an up close experience learning more about Minnesota Natives! 

Choose from one of the following lectures:

  1. Minnesota's Native Plants: A Sampling for Your Garden
  2. Landscaping with Native Plants
  3. Top 30 Native Plants for your Garden

Call or email Shirley for more information at 763-464-8323 or at

Retail Nursery Grand Reopening!
A Free Butterfly Milkweed Plant with Any Purchase!
5300 Hwy 12, Maple Plain MN, 55359
Offer Expires 6/01/2014. Available at Retail Nursery location only. One coupon per customer. One Free Butterfly Milkweed Plant per customer with any purchase of another native plant.