Gurus hit the garden for workshop

Gardeners from across the Northern Agricultural Region have given a green “thumbs up” to the Native Gardening Workshop held in Mingenew recently.

Hosted by the Mingenew Irwin Group (MIG), participants walked away with a fresh new perspective on looking at the bush.

The gardeners had all gathered in Mingenew to learn some top tips and benefits of growing native plants from gardening gurus, Sharon Greaves, Nan Broad and Stan Maley, and they weren’t disappointed.

Sharon emphasised the array of beauty that could be achieved by simply establishing a garden that mirrors the diversity of plant species already growing in nearby bushland, saying: “Check what’s growing locally … even the grasses on roadside verges.”

Native saltbushes were a fan of Nan’s as she explained that they are easy to grow, and come in all different shapes, sizes and colours, “I even have one that’s lime green!” she added.

Stan echoed his fellow gurus’ comments with a collection of photos of beautiful native gardens that he had come across throughout the Northern Agricultural Region.

The water-saving benefits of maintaining a native garden were also discussed, along with the bonus of encouraging native birds to your garden. With yet another good tip, Anna Maxted of MIG suggested that species can also be chosen according to which native birds you want (or don’t want!) visiting your garden.

Top 5 tips for a nourished native garden

  1. If you are interested in growing a native garden, now is the time to order seedlings so that they are ready to go in the ground at the beginning of winter when the air is cooler but the ground is still warm.
  2. Tube stock is encouraged as it establishes quickly with healthy root growth.
  3. Buying locally from local native tree nurseries is also encouraged – as these plants are specially grown to suit local conditions.
  4. If purchasing from a local nursery, more information will be available to you from the grower – such as which plants will grow best according to soil type and location.
  5. Finally (and most importantly), when growing a native garden, Nan Broad told participants, is to “enjoy it and be patient.”

If you would like more information about growing a native garden, check-out the coastal and inland native gardening guides – available from the NACC offices, or on the NACC publications list. 

MIG’s Native Gardening Workshop was funded as part of NACC’s Biodiversity Community Grants Round 1, through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program. 

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