As I was digging up bulbs of Jonquils, Daffodils and Bluebells from my garden today to make room for my lovely new native plant acquisitions I was thinking, whether you believe in God or mother nature, in creation or evolution, you have to agree that the plants endemic to any one region are cleverly and uniquely adapted to that area and therefore are a good place to start when thinking about what to plant in the garden. As much as I love my northern hemisphere bulbs (and they really are very tough) I find myself more and more drawn to our native plants which are just as beautiful and are so uniquely ours. And I thought how would it be if I only grew native plants in my garden. Scary!
Many of the plants we sell through IDP Nursery are found naturally in the local area for example Einadia nutans and Rhodanthe anthemoides and some, such as Indigofera australis, Hardenbergia violacea, and Pultenaea subspicata, are growing naturally in my own paddocks. These plants do just fine in my paddocks amongst the Eucalypt trees with no added care which goes to show how very tough they are.
The Eucalypts themselves are well adapted to the environment. They have lignotubers at the base of their trunks so that they can regenerate after fires, and their leaves, which hang downwards, do so to minimise exposure to the sun thereby reducing moisture loss.
Other moisture reducing adaptations of Australian native plants include:
The list of adaptations goes on and on. It is awe inspiring to think of.
And so I have not dug up all my Daffodils, Jonquils or Bluebells but have reduced them down to a special few. Maybe next year I will be able to let go a little more and embrace the native plant challenge completely. Will you?