When planning a garden, it makes great sense to feature natives. Not only do Australian natives vary widely in selection and variety but they are recognised as being amongst the most stunning in the world. Don’t just take our word for it, check here for our article on the winner of the prestigious Chelsea Flower Show. Even the Queen was impressed! While many gardeners agree that Australian natives are a perfect choice for any garden — and the popularity of native-based gardens has increased in recent decades — there are a number of stand out advantages in going Aussie in your front or back yard. Water efficient In these days of periodical dry weather and water bans (interspersed with heavy rain it seems!), it makes sense to plant gardens that make efficient use of this precious resource. Because they are adapted to grow in harsh conditions, many Australian natives need little regular watering to survive once they have been established. Indeed care must be taken not to overwater natives, nor provide them with too much fertiliser — a boon for forgetful gardeners like me! Adaptability In addition to this Australian native plants are (naturally) well adapted to Australian conditions. While it is important to do the research to find the type of natives best suited to your area — such as whether you live on the coast or inland and the all-important climate zone — those that are native to the region are generally very hardy to the conditions. Haven for native wildlife Native trees, shrubs and plants are all of course important for the survival of our iconic native wildlife, particularly birds. The planting of natives is especially important for their survival where housing estates have denuded the existing bush and shrub, leaving nothing for the native birds to feed and live on.
As an example our own front yard is now home to a multitude of rosellas, lorikeets, honeyeaters and bower birds which use the native shrubs (banksias, waratahs and callistemons) as shelter and an important food source. Our experience has been that if you add the native plants to your landscape, the birds (almost magically) start to appear, particularly when the natives flower.
As discussed in an earlier article, Australian native gardens are recognised as being amongst the most splendid in the world. If you are planning a new garden, why not consider a native garden? With the right selection of trees (if you have space) shrubs and lower growing natives you will not only have a water efficient space that will provide a food source and haven for the local native birds but you will also helping promote the landscape heritage of the region in which you live. Here at Evergreen Growers we feature a wide variety of Australian natives (please see our website). We’re also happy to provide advice and answer any questions you may have on growing native plants.