Thursday, 24 May 2012

It's planting time

We went to the Friends of Kings Park May native plant sale on Sunday, and bought a lot of plants that you won't often find elsewhere, mostly for $3 a tube. They'll be going in the ground next weekend. This is the only time of the year when it's practical to plant - with half an acre, and not wanting to waste water, I refuse to water anything except vegetables. Natives go in the ground in late Autumn / early Winter, get well watered in and then they're pretty much on their own.

This technique is actually working pretty well. Some plants do die, but that's OK. It's enabled us to work out which species are best for our conditions, and so we just get more of the happy ones. Grevilleas and Hakeas have been the most successful and have the advantage of attracting birds and providing shelter for the bandicoots.

The land my house is on used to be part of a horse property. When we bought it, there were a few trees - Eucalyptus rudis (Flooded Gum), Corymbia calophylla (Marri), and two species of wattles. There were no native understorey plants - just a whole lot of weeds. The only birds that liked to hang around were the large ones - magpies and galahs, mostly. Since introducing a wide variety of flowering natives, we're now a regular stopover for many species of smaller birds.