Wild Ones’ organizational position statement on cultivars of native plants, a.k.a. nativars.
(2013) Wild Ones. Nativars are selected and perpetuated by horticulturists for many alleged reasons: atypical colors or forms of flowers, compact size, insect or disease resistance, tolerance of certain challenging environmental conditions, and many other reasons–all of which, if true, may be valuable in themselves and for home gardeners.
However, there are a number of important concerns regarding the use of nativars.
The premise behind the use of nativars is to isolate a single genetic sliver from the diversity of the natural gene pool of a native species. Therefore, the use of nativars inherently excludes as much genetic diversity as possible, resulting in nursery stock that is almost always genetically identical to the original selection. The diversity of genes in straight native species gives species more flexibility (and adaptability) when confronting stress such as disease or climate change.