How to grow wildflowers
Our Top Tips and Mistakes to Avoid When Trying to Grow Wildflowers
Choose just one species to create a “Landscape”. That may be all very well for public gardens meant to be viewed as you speed by in your car. But a garden is for walking in and fiddling with and enjoying close up. You want variety. On the other hand, try to avoid a jumble. Group similar plants and especially group plants with similar water requirements.
Expect plants from tropical, summer-rainfall areas to thrive with little or no summer water. This applies to most of the hybrid grevilleas – they are wonderful plants, and they thrive with quite a bit of summer water. They also provide a resource for honey eating birds.
Choose some plants for their flowers. You’ll get spectacular displays from many WA plants. But like most flowering shrubs, they may not be exciting for the rest of the year. See our list of wildflowers to grow in your garden
Choose some plants for their foliage and for foliage contrasts.
Include some height variation. There are many beautiful small trees on our lists to add interest.
Naturalize some everlastings between the shrubs for a spring show. Especially in the early years while the perennial plants are still filling the space. They need a soil wetting agent to get good germination, strong protection from snails, plus a bit of fertilizer to promote the necessary rapid growth.
Learn to love mulch. Once your native garden is mature it will form its own mulch – especially if your pruning policy is ‘chop it and drop it’. Until it reaches this happy stage you need to have a mulching program. Free mulch is often available through your local council. You can also register for free mulch via mulchnet and get some mulching tips as well
Learn something about a plant’s natural environment. For example most largish hybrid kangaroo paws have the evergreen paw (Anigozanthos flavidus) somewhere in their parentage. It grows on the south coast. In Perth its hybrids need some water up to at least Christmas to flower properly.