Whether you’re settling into your new house or just about to get the keys, you’ve probably put a lot of thought into decorating the inside of your home with greenery and house plants. After all, you want to give your new space some personality. However, have you spared a thought for how you’ll landscape your backyard and front yard? Even if your outside space is limited, you can still turn the tiniest of gardens into a beautiful oasis that will impress passers-by and guests.
Unlike indoor plants, you’ll need to be a little bit more selective when it comes to your outdoor plants. This is because you’ll need to be aware of micro-climates and the different soils across your site in order for your chosen plants to thrive. In Australia, we experience all types of weather extremes, so it’s important to note your site conditions as well as your region’s climate throughout the year.
Here, we suggest the best outdoor plants for coastal areas, inland areas, wet areas and dry areas.
Outdoor plants for coastal areas
Living close to the shoreline is relaxing and restorative for us, but not so much for some types of garden plants. If you’re living close to the coast, you’ll need to find plants that are salt-tolerant, wind-tolerant, and robust. The best plants for coastal areas have:
- Silver-grey foliage to deflect the sun’s rays
- Slender, grass-like leaves or thick, leathery leaves
- A naturally low shape so they are aerodynamic in a strong sea breeze
Our suggestions: Coastal rosemary, gazanias, mat rushes, saw banksia, oleanders, cupheas, and juniper.
Plants for inland areas
Every garden is unique, and so the best plants for inland areas are largely dependent on a range of factors. The possibility of the introduction of foreign soils, building materials, and even water supplied by reticulated systems will all affect how well your plants grow. One way to be sure which outdoor plants will thrive in an inland environment is to visit your local nursery and ask for plants that have been grown from seed or cuttings collected from the nearby area.
Plants for wet areas
If your home is located in an area that is prone to heavy rainfall, there are plenty of outdoor plants that are well suited for tropical climates. The best plants for wet areas include the following:
- Generally have bright flowers
- Feature waxy, smooth or glandular stems
- Clasping leaf bases
Our suggestions: Papyrus, iris, achillea, lily of the valley, cordgrass, calendula, poinsettia, most ferns.
Plants for dry areas
Don’t think you can grow plants in clay soil? Think again. In fact, there’s a surprisingly large range of Australian native plants that are suited for dry soil conditions. If you experience more sun than shade or rain where you live, you’ll want to consider the following features when it comes to the best plants for dry areas:
- Thick, waxy coating on the leaves to reduce water loss
- Thick, fleshy leaves or stems
- Tubers and enlarged roots that act as a food and water source
- A woody swelling at or just below ground level
Our suggestions: Brachyscome, scaveola, ground cover grevilleas, flax lily, callistemons, golden wattle, lemon flowered gum.
Our secret tip
Looking for a foolproof way to find the best outdoor plants for your garden? Look at your neighbours’ front and backyards. Observe what’s flourishing there and what’s always in season. This will give you a good indication of what’s possible to grow in your own garden.
For more home gardening ideas and inspiration, visit the Hotondo Homes website today.