Articles and Fact Sheets


Growing waratahs in pots

Growing waratahs in pots

•    Select a pot or tub 2-3 times larger than the existing pot and with excellent drainage holes in the base.
•    Fill the pot with a layer of orchid mix at the base then top up with standard free draining commercial potting mix that has no added fertiliser.  Do not use garden soil.
•    Plant the waratahs into the potting mix so that the base of the stem is level with the top of the mix.  Sprinkle some slow release native fertiliser over the surface and water in well.
•    Place the pot on a stand in dappled shade, protected from the westerly sun and westerly wind.
•    Water daily in summer and during hot windy weather and once every three days in winter (depending on rainfall). Pots should not get too wet or dry out.


A novel approach to creating a small water feature.

A novel approach to creating a small water feature using a recycled resource.

I have a north facing front courtyard at my house, in Sydney’s northern suburb. In this courtyard I have a large (about 5 tonne) imported sandstone rock that has many native Dendrobium kingianum and speciosum orchids growing on it even though it receives full afternoon sun I should be more correct and call them Thelychiton kingianum and T. speciosum, as they have been recently renamed, but old names linger on.

As I always wanted a small pond/water feature, I created a dry creek bed leading from the rock to a small stainless steel 47 litre laundry tub. To make it all appear ‘natural’ I undertook the following work:



what  we do

Wattle pollen is often believed to be the culprit when people get the sneezes and snuffles - hayfever - or asthma. Wattle gets the blame but is it really the cause?


Why Grow Native Plants ?

who  are we ?


spectacular flowers - Grevillea, Banksia, paper daisy, bottlebrush
unusual flowers - kangaroo paw, eucalypt, gymea lily
interesting habit - foliage, bark, aroma - fig, hakea, gumtree, mintbush
associations - Australian plants have a richness of association with the people, places, literature and history of our country. Whatever you grow, whether a waratah, wattle, saltbush or Sturts desert pea, natives will bring these associations to your garden.


extend your choice of garden plants
are adapted to the climate and soils (local plants only)
attract native birds and animals to the garden to bring your garden alive
provide habitat for native animals, including small ones such as frogs, skinks, ants and crickets.


provide green corridors for fauna moving between patches of bushland
bring back the bush
create a sense of place, the character of your region, in gardens, street trees, parks and rural areas.


contribute to the conservation of bush flora and threatened species
explore the diversity, beauty and peculiarity Australian flora.


research into the place of the Australian flora in the ecology
selection of superior varieties for commercial uses such as forestry, shelter belts, fodder, cut flowers, pharmaceuticals, bush foods
development of plants for export industries
displays and education in botanic gardens, schools and parks.

By growing Australian you will discover the beauty of our native flora, bring history to your garden and help conserve the biodiversity of our continent.


Banksias for Sydney

banksias for Sydney

Of the 77 species of banksia, the majority grow in southwest Western Australia - and (as many a gardener will be able to painfully recall) the majority of these cannot cope with Sydney's weather. The reason for this is that summer humidity provides ideal conditions for the spread of the rootrot fungus Phytophthora cinnamomi, to which western banksias are exquisitely sensitive. Some species, such as Banksia speciosa may appear to grow quickly and thrive for a couple of years before succumbing rapidly one summer.


Native Plants in Agricuture

who  are we ?

Most landholders are now well aware of the benefits to agricultural production of strategically located "trees on farms". These benefits relate to agricultural productivity and have been well documented elsewhere. In summary, they include: