Like any other plant, Australian natives need some care and maintenance. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that planting a native garden is an exercise in ‘set and forget’.
In nature native plants regenerate naturally through events like bushfire, storm and flood. Koalas, kangaroos and other animals prune them by browsing, and mulching is a natural occurrence. For your garden to thrive you’ll need to prune, fertilise, mulch and even water in some cases.
State Flora is here to help. Bring a sample of your soil in to one of our nurseries and we’ll perform a free, basic soil analysis. We’ll confirm the soil type and PH levels. Our staff can then help you choose the water efficient plants right for your garden.
The ideal time for planting is after the autumn opening rains when the soil is moist and plants have time to establish roots before the warm weather kicks in. Mulch around the plant to a depth of 50-100mm. This will conserve soil moisture and reduce weed competition.
Water in your new plants. Over the first summer they may need an occasional deep watering to establish water-efficient and drought tolerant root systems. After their first summer they should cope on rainfall alone. Before severe heatwaves give your plants a thorough watering so water penetrates deep into the soil.
Mulch and gravels
Apply 5–10 cm of mulch or gravel, creating a bowl shape around the plant to help retain water. To avoid plant disease, keep mulch away from plant stems.
Optional, but Australian native plants do benefit from an organic, slow-release fertiliser with low levels of Phosphorous.
Maintaining your plants
Most native species will appreciate a light trim to keep their shape, promote new growth and encourage flowering. Pruning is best done after flowering, usually late spring or early summer.
State Flora plant lists
These lists will help you choose the plants to suit your needs. Talk to our staff to make sure that any plant you’re interested in is suited to your local environment.