While non-native exotic plants provide many benefits in sustainable urban landscapes, increasingly their presence is believed to be bad.
(2011) Journal of Landscape and Urban Planning essay. This essay by James Hitchmough, University of Sheffield, United Kingdom, provides a perspective on non-invasive exotic plant species in relation to sustainable designed urban plantings. It considers the reasons why, despite their ubiquitous presence in most towns and cities, non-invasive exotic plants are increasingly believed to be either hazardous or at the very least incompatible with urban sustainability notions. Exotic species are reviewed in relation to key measures of what sustainable planting might entail, for example the capacity to minimize carbon expenditure, support biodiversity and how these species play a positive role in human perception of designed landscapes.