In recent years the popularity of Australian
plants for domestic gardens has increased dramatically. To a large extent this is due to the
increased awareness that 'growing native' is environmentally sound practice. A wide range of Australian
plants is now available from most nurseries, and these are generally quite easily grown.
Care should be taken to ensure that plants are
chosen for the correct climatic conditions. Australia is a large continent with many climatic and geographic
zones, and plants which grow naturally in one zone may not be suited to your corner of NQ! There are for instance
many hybrid species available, particularly Grevilleas, and the success of these in a particular area will depend
to some degree on the suitability of the parent plants to that area.
A full guide to Austalian plants and their
climatic requirements can be found in "Australian Native Plants" John
W Wrigley and Murray Fagg.
One of the often overlooked advantages of
Australian plants is that they naturally blend in with the surrounding flora. If you have existing eucalypts or
other trees on your block these can be used as a ideal foundation for further native landscaping.
Birds are attracted to the garden by these
plants as they provide natural food and shelter. Many of the nectar producing species such as Grevillea and
Callistemons (now Melaleucas) bring large numbers of Honeyeaters and other birds at flowering time. If water
can be provided it assists to maintain a permanent population.
Careful selection of plantings can provide
numerous styles of garden suitable to North Queensland from dry country species to rainforest plots. Many dry
country species are naturally drought resistant and are ideal for planting in conditions where little watering is
possible. Dedicated enthusiasts can create rainforest plots by selecting suitable species to survive
the generally dry climate of Townsville.
Hardy Natives for Townsville
Fauna Attracting Plants
Gardening with Shrubs