The Ultimate List on Natives to Plant in your Garden

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Australia has a wide range of unique native flora which are well suited to our climate and beautiful to behold. With strong drought tolerance and resistance to heat, you can grow a garden with native plant features which will require little maintenance to thrive and bring colour to your landscape.

Here’s out suggestions on some native plants which will fit well into your garden:

Leptospermum flavescens ‘Cardwell’

Leptospermum flavescens ‘Cardwell’

This is a small Tea Tree to around 1.5 metres high and wide that produces masses of white blooms in Spring. Its a very showy floral display so can be used as a feature plant or an informal hedge. It tends to have a rounded shape and appreciates free-draining soil and full sun or part shade. Its tolerant of light frosts and is suitable for coastal or inland areas. Mass plantings can look quite impressive.

Leptospermum polygalifolium – Tantoon – Yellow Tea-tree

Leptospermum polygalifolium – Tantoon – Yellow Tea-tree

A wide spread and popular garden shrub occurring naturally along a large area of Eastern Australia from southern NSW to far North Queensland. Tantoon is a variable shrub from 1 to 3 metres wide and 3 to 4 metres high. It’s a fast growing shrub ideal for screening. The light green leaves are small to around 8mm long and slightly aromatic. The white flowers grow to 2cm in diameter and often borne profusely in spring and summer. It’s suitable for most soils requiring water during dry periods and suited to a wide range of climates including tropical and cool zones. Polygalifolium often forms a rounded shrub with coppery coloured new growth and the flowers are suitable for floral displays.

Alpinia coerulea – Native Ginger

Alpinia coerulea – Native Ginger

The Native Ginger produces wonderful white flowers in terminal influences throughout the year followed by attractive blue rounded fruits. Both the fruit and the young tips have a distinct ginger flavour and were eaten by indigenous people. This is a good plant for shaded areas and indoor use forming a clump and has large glossy leaves rising on fleshy stems to around 1.5 metres high. This plant prefers warm regions and ample water in dry times. This is a very useful plant in landscaping, for around pools and for use in pots and containers. It’s a very hardy plant when given some water, shade and protection from wind and extreme conditions.

Eucalyptus Cinerea- Argyle Apple

Eucalyptus Cinerea- Argyle Apple

This is a popular small tree with distinctive silvery-blue foliage providing a striking contrast in gardens. It often only grows to about 7 or 8 metres high, but can reach 15 metres or more in ideal conditions. It’s ideal for small yards or for use as a street tree. Florists often use the juvenile foliage for arrangements as the stem clasping leaves are quite stunning in colour and form. Cinerea is found naturally in cold areas of NSW and Victoria around Bathurst and Beechworth and is therefore suited to cold climates and dislikes saline soils. It often has a low branching habit and rough, brown, fibrous bark. This is a hardy tree in most areas requiring some moisture and is suitable for clay soils.

Correa Alba – White Correa

Correa Alba – White Correa

This is a small shrub to about 1 metre high and slightly wider. It has very attractive white star flowers ith a hint of pink in the centre to around 3cm wide, produced predominately through winter and spring but are sometimes seen at other times of the year. The leaves are blue green with a furry texture and are round in shape. The white Correa flowers best in full sun but will also tolerate shade. It prefers well drained soil, is salt tolerant and therefore ideal for coastal areas and is resistant to light frosts. This is a hardy plant with attractive flowers suitable for the vase. 

Backhousia Citriodora – Lemon Ironwood – Lemon Myrtle

Backhousia Citriodora – Lemon Ironwood – Lemon Myrtle

This is one of those plants that’s a pleasure to have in the garden with its wonderful pungent lemon fragrance. The fluffy white flowers occur through summer and autumn and emit a delightful lemon perfume in the evenings. The leaves are also highly fragrant when crushed and are used commercially to extract the lemon flavour. The leaves contain high amounts of citral and can be used to flavour a wide variety of foods such as soups, desserts, breads, fish recipes and teas. It’s a small tree or shrub growing to between 3 and 8 metres high and useful for screening or as a street tree. Originating in Queensland, the Lemon Myrtle prefers a rich soil with ample water and will perform well in most areas with minimal frosts. The shiny foliage and fine white flowers make this a wonderful tree to use as a feature with the added benefit of lemon fragrance through your garden.  

Crinum Pedunculatum – Swamp Lily

Crinum Pedunculatum – Swamp Lily

The Swamp Lily is a striking plant that produces large fragrant white spider flowers to 10cm across in summer and autumn. It’s a hardy perennial accepting of wet soils, part-shade or full sun with large strap-like fleshy green leaves to up to 2 metres long. It enjoys a moist position and coastal areas accruing naturally from Newcastle NSW in the south into Queensland and is also found in New Guinea and on Pacific Islands. This is a large plant that can be 2 metres wide and high or rarely more and has a striking appearance making it ideal for use as a feature plant. It’s tolerant of salt winds and looks well around pools and dams. It can be used in containers and grows well under trees.

Correa reflexa – Native Fuchsia

Correa reflexa – Native Fuchsia

This is a small shrub to 1 metre or so high and wide but often smaller. It produces beautiful red bell flowers with green tips in winter and has attractive small rounded leaves. It likes well-drained soil and part shade of full sun and occurs naturally in all eastern states as well as South Australia and Tasmania. It will tolerate light frost as well as coastal sites and the pleasant flowers can be used in floral arrangements. Correa reflexa is a fast growing and reliable garden plant that will also grow very nicely in containers.

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The Ultimate List on Natives to Plant in your Garden

Australia has a wide range of unique native flora which are well suited to our climate and beautiful to behold. With strong...