Skip to content Skip to main navigation

Ask RiotACT

Charity and fundraising auctions for the Canberra community

Ask RiotACT: Tough plants for Canberra conditions

By McZero - 14 June 2016 6

Ask RiotACT

Hi, I am not much of a gardener, so I need a bit of advice. I have a bit of a garden that faces east with a fence behind it that I need to plant out. I used to have a correa and a federation daisy in there but last winter seemed to kill them. It seems gardening in Canberra is pretty tough because of the clay soil, low rainfall and freezing winters. My wife asked for plants with lots of flowers. So, with this in mind:

1. Do people have any plants thriving in an east facing garden that have lots of flowers?

2. What are some tough plants with lots of flowers that thrive here in canberra? Bulletproof plants that thrive on neglect

Thank you.

What’s Your opinion?


Post a comment
Please login to post your comments, or connect with
6 Responses to
Ask RiotACT: Tough plants for Canberra conditions
Genie 11:42 am 16 Jun 16

dungfungus said :

Photinia Robusta get lots of little sickly sweet smelling flowers in spring. Canberra climate and indeed convential weapons (including N2 mines) have no affect on these. They require you to prune and go to the green waste twice a week. Your neigbours will ask you to take them down as the smell overpowers them. Being nice neigbours who value their helpfulness and friendliness you oblige without hesitation and spend many weekends digging up roots as getting in a stump grinder is too expensive. They start out as a nice shrub or hedge but can go on to be used as props in a grittier and darker live action Sleeping Beauty reboot.

I’d kill them fire but that won’t even make them flinch.

If I was PM… I’d ban this plant ! LOL

Genie 11:41 am 16 Jun 16

I seem to have a black thumb and kill most plants. However I soon learnt it was the soil and not me.

I strongly recommend improving the soil prior to planting, grab a few bags of chicken or cow manure spread on top and cover with tanbark, mulch or sugar cane mulch. Yes it’ll stink for a few days, but luckily the frost “freezes” the smell. Previously everything would die off on me within a month or 2 but now my plants are happy, even when I forget to water them !!!

I have some osteospermums (African daisy) thriving in my garden at the moment and are covered in flowers, however these were planted back in Dec/Jan. Not sure if they would survive being planted now. They do love their sun but. I think I have a mostly easterly aspect where they are planted. (full sun in the morning to early afternoon, afternoon shade)

Not an overly flowering plant, but check out Hebes. They do flower throughout winter and are shrubs that come in almost every size and various colours. I have 4 different varieties in my garden at the moment, some that only grow to 30cm with a deep purple and green leaf and purple flower, to a 70cm high white flowered “hedge” and have recently planted a mix of pink and purple flowering 1-1.5m growing height to form a hedge between myself and my neighbour.

It’s worthwhile heading out to the Heritage Nursery or somewhere like Rodney’s at Pialligo. Staff are very informative and have picked up many tips reading the gardening articles in the CityNews by Cedric.

Lenient 2:59 pm 14 Jun 16

Photinia Robusta get lots of little sickly sweet smelling flowers in spring. Canberra climate and indeed convential weapons (including N2 mines) have no affect on these. They require you to prune and go to the green waste twice a week. Your neigbours will ask you to take them down as the smell overpowers them. Being nice neigbours who value their helpfulness and friendliness you oblige without hesitation and spend many weekends digging up roots as getting in a stump grinder is too expensive. They start out as a nice shrub or hedge but can go on to be used as props in a grittier and darker live action Sleeping Beauty reboot.

I’d kill them fire but that won’t even make them flinch.

Acton 11:38 am 14 Jun 16

For an east facing plant I have tried many but have had most success with Pelargoniums, Camellia sasanquas and roses.
Bulletproof plants that thrive on neglect? Well, they will do better if you improve the soil before planting with a few bags of compost mixed with a few bags of chicken, cow or horse manure and then put bark or sugar cane mulch over newspaper.
You can trim a rosebush wih a chain saw, but keep on feeding them through the year and they will reward you with some beauties to bring inside.

dungfungus 10:44 am 14 Jun 16

Westringia Fruticosa and a hybrid Indigo Australia are both natives that need little care but thrive when watered regularly. Both have nice flowers and are good screening or hedge choices.

bronal 9:24 am 14 Jun 16

You don’t say how big the area is, but I assume form the fact that you had a correa in it before that it’s big enough for one medium to large shrub plus a small ground-hugging plant.

An easterly aspect isn’t all that bad – better than southerly or westerly, but you will get morning sun in winter which can burn off leaves after a heavy frost.

I would suggest improving the soil if you can before planting. Now is ideal, as the soil is most and easy to dig. Add in some compost if you have any, or perhaps some coarse sand.

I would suggest a bottlebrush (callistemon – now included with melaleuca). They are generally very hardy plants, come in a variety of reds, pinks, violets and will flower twice a year if you trim them after flowering. They can be heavily pruned to keep their shape and will bounce back within a few months.

Related Articles

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Top
Copyright © 2017 Riot ACT Holdings Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.
www.the-riotact.com | www.b2bmagazine.com.au | www.thisiscanberra.com

Search across the site