Senators want to restore native plants to US national parks


BAR HARBOR, Maine (AP) — A pair of U.S. senators believes restoring native plants in national parks around the country could help beautify and improve some of America’s most beloved public places.

The effort is led by Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine and Democratic Sen. Maria Cantwell of Washington. They’ve called the bill the Native Plant Species Pilot Program Act and said it would encourage the National Park Service to increase use of native plant materials on land the service stewards.

The use of native plants would benefit wildlife, human health and the environment, Collins and Cantwell said. Collins said the proposal would be especially beneficial for Acadia National Park in Maine.

“Acadia’s native plant communities includes many species such as the blueberry barrens near the mountain summits, the towering white pines in older forests, and the cranberry bogs along Northeast Creek that contribute to Maine’s iconic landscape,” Collins said.