How to grow Australian native flowers

Big, bold and gorgeous, Australian native flowers are amazing. Our garden guru Meredith Kirton reveals how to grow your own at home.

australian native flowers
With their stunning blooms and textured leaves, Australian natives are a knockout in both the garden and in a vase. The most commonly loved cut native flowers include waratahs, banksias and gum blossoms, kangaroo paws and Christmas bush.
Whatever your soil or climate, it’s possible to find the right selection for your place. Many natives don’t like being fed phosphorous, so use a native specific fertiliser each spring. Natives also like being pruned regularly, so cut them back after flowering.
Here, horticulturalist Meredith Kirton shares some plant-specific tips to help you grow your own Australian natives at home.


Waratahs are the floral emblem of NSW and possibly one of the most striking flowers in the world. Their blooms are the colour of blood, though some have been bred in pink, orange, bicolour and white shades. The flowers last for many weeks both in a vase and blooming in the garden. Grow waratahs in a raised mound or pot as they really need great drainage to thrive. They can be in a semi shaded or full sun position.


Hakea are closely related to grevilleas and, similarly, are a diverse group of plants. Many make great screens and can even be hedged. One stunning flowered Hakea to look out for is Hakea laurina, or the Pin-cushion Hakea. Native to Western Australia, it does need good drainage but, once established, is very hardy. And it’s a wonder to look at in the garden when in flower each spring.
Photo: Getty
Photo: Getty

Gum Blossoms

The Western Australian Red Flowering Gum (Corymbia ficifolia) is now grafted onto a range of hardy rootstocks, making it perfect for growing right across Australia. There are white, pink, orange and red hybrids, and they are all breathtaking. They’re also brilliant for small gardens as they only grow to around 5m tall, though this varies from cultivar to cultivar. The flowers are followed by large gumnuts too, making them perfect for cutting something of interest for about six months of the year.

NSW Christmas Bush

This is a small shrub or small tree depending on the variety, which can make great screening plants. The “flowers” are the showy bracts that appear throughout summer after the small white flowers in spring. They grow best in moist or regularly watered, organically enriched soil, in full sun or semi shade. Pick lots of flowers, as more pruning makes them thicker and bushier, which means more flowers next year!
Photo: Getty
Photo: Getty


Also known as spider flowers, this group has extraordinary diversity, with Grevillea plants ranging from small ground covers to tall trees. If you’re in a frost-free position, tropical hybrids are probably best, especially for cut flowers. They include great shrubs like Grevillea ‘Robyn Gordon’ and taller screens like ‘Misty Pink’, ‘Moonlight’ and ‘Honey Gem’ – and they seem to flower year round. In colder areas, stick to the hardy, small-flowered types like Grevillea ‘Gold Fever’ and ‘New Blood’.

Kangaroo Paws

These grassy reed-like clumps range in size from around 30cm up to 1m, and their blooms sit up off stems that vary in length and colour depending on the variety… some red, others yellow, orange and pink. There are even black and near-white types around. They all like good drainage so either mound the soil or grow in large pots or bowls. Remove old flowers once they have faded.
Photo: Claire Takacs
Photo: Claire Takacs

Silver Princess Gum

The Silver Princess Gum (Eucalyptus caesia) is only suitable for very well drained positions without humid summers, but if you have the right spot this is perhaps one of the most stunning flowers to grow. Its pinkish red blooms, up to 4cm each, show up beautifully against the soft grey leaves. It has a gently weeping habit too, that can actually be manipulated to grow on an arbour so that the blossoms hang down like garlands.
This fire-tolerant tree is threatened in the wild but has remained a garden favourite for years.
This fire-tolerant tree is threatened in the wild but has remained a garden favourite for years.


These candle-like blooms – named after Sir Joseph Banks – have species that are native to both the east coast and the west coast of Australia. Their stunning flowers range from red and orange shades through to blue and green, depending on the species. Some are trees and others ground covers.
The top pick for areas in the west, South Australia and Melbourne, where summers aren’t humid, is probably Scarlet Banksia (Banksia coccinea). This variety has incredible flowers and will also make a great screen up to around fence height.
If you are from Sydney or further north up the east coast, the Hairpin Banksia (Banksia ericifolia) is beautiful and hardy. There is also a ground-covering cultivar called ‘Birthday Candles’, which only grows about 30cm tall but does spread to about a metre across, creating a stunning mound.

A Nugget from WordCamp 2019

Whenever I attend a conference, I’m satisfied if I learn one new thing that I didn’t previously know.   I want to share with you something, a nugget if you will, that I learned at this years WordCamp.  I don’t have an on-line business, but I think many of you do or want to have someday.  I think you would be interested in learning some of the questions to ask yourself to better market your business.  I have attached a handout given we workshop attendees by Rebecca Gill, who is a top marketing and SEO consultant. The handout is only one of eight pages, but gives you a flavor of what Rebecca does for clients.    Here’s page one of the handout:



And there’s seven more pages of information like this page.  She offers a free e-book, “A Beginners Guide to SEO”, that might be of interest to you, especially if you don’t know what SEO stands for (Search Engine Optimization).  So if you have an interest in starting or marketing a business, here is a link to her website:


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Top Outdoor Christmas Decorations Ideas


Here are some wonderful Christmas outdoor decorating ideas for you to consider.  Now is the time to plan because, here in the north, winter snows soon begin to fall in earnest right after Thanksgiving.  So here we go:

An annual special holiday almost celebrated all throughout the world, Christmas never fails to put happiness and love among families. It allows people to make amends, families to reunite and friends to rekindle lost spirits. The celebration is more than just giving gifts to people who matters to you and those who made your whole year worthwhile.The Christmas season allows you to show your creativity and artistic side by decorating your front porch and lawn so that your house would stand out on your neighborhood’s block. Here you can find some Outdoor Christmas Decorations ideas to inspire you. It is not just about the bragging rights good for one whole year. It demonstrates the passion you sweetly pour on the holiday celebration each year.

Imagine the love and joy you can bring not just on your family but on the neighborhood kids and to the other people who happens to pass by as well. Christmas is about sharing and giving whether it is the Christmas spirit itself or just the holiday cheer – you sure have something to give.

Giant Outdoor Christmas Balls

Outdoor Christmas Decorations

Giant Christmas balls on your front yard or on your front step are just wonderful.  These eye-catching pieces are more than just a décor to symbolize the holiday season. The huge Christmas balls show your dedication to bring cheer and happiness to the family.  The big round decors have been embellished with different snowflake designs intricately made just for the occasion. The balls are on deep vibrant colors that offers a striking balance between the white pristine snow on your lawn or steps.

Christmas Outdoor Snowman

Outdoor Christmas Decorations

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Christmas Decorated House Front yard

Let Us Make merry. Outdoor Christmas Decorated house

Outdoor Christmas DecoratioOutdoor Christmas Decor for Porch

Want a rustic Christmas set up in your porch? Achieve this look by making green wreath with ribbons and wicker basket filled with greeneries. Try to add some stars and lights too.

Sweet and Simple Wreath

Add some color to that white walls and doors by hanging a candy cane-shaped wreath. Add some greens as well.

Outdoor Window Decorations

Christmas balls are One of the most essential Christmas ornaments. There are a lot of Christmas ball designs to choose from. You can go for huge ones and put them on your window sill. Complete the look with pine leaves.

White and Snowy

If you have a plain white house, you can fill up your exterior with the traditional colors of Christmas. To brighten it up, try to add some wreaths with a splash of red and silver ornaments to your fence and windows for a striking effect.

Giant Christmas Decorations


DIY Candy Cane Outdoor Decor


Green and Lighted Outdoor Christmas Decorations

Fabulous Outdoor Light Decor

Snowy Luminaries

This is a creative way to decorate your outdoor. Use those clear glass to make a lantern. Put some candles inside to light up your walkway or staircase.

Festive Outdoor Christmas decorations

The peppermint decorations simply add a pop of color to the front of your yard. These sweet Christmas candy shaped lamps will surely give a smile to the people who will pass by your house.

Fabulous  Christmas Entryway Decoration

You can usually find these decorations outside or at your backyard. Try collecting ferns or the likes and go for this front door design. Throw in some Christmas lights and you’re good to go.

Jolly and Merry

Mixing up lively decorative colors is a fun way for a Christmas theme. It resembles happy moments and makes you feel like a kid again.

Vintage Outdoor Lantern


DIY Gift Planters

Shutter Snowmen Decorations

Tomato Cage Christmas Trees

Lighted Ornament

Adding these lantern inspired lights to your lawn instantly makes it inviting especially when the sun comes down. Admire your outdoor every night and enjoy the Christmas spirit!

Rustic Outdoor Christmas Decorating Ideas

Joy Sign Board

Beautiful Christmas Door

Hanging Outdoor Decor

Giant Ornament Planter

Outdoor Christmas Decorations
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Adorn you front step with something that brings life and color to the surrounding.  The potted Christmas balls and long Red twigs warmly welcomes your guest. It shows more than just beauty and décor but the hospitality you are willing to give. The bow accent completes the whole package.

Pallet Christmas Tree

Outdoor Christmas Decorating ideaa
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You do not have to spend so much on sparkling lights and expensive Christmas trees to decorate your yard. You can use ingenious materials like proportionate pieces of logs stacked up together to assemble your own unique Christmas tree. Accentuate it with just the right length of Christmas lights and let it shine. It is the product of your resourcefulness and creativity all rolled into one.

Magical Christmas Lantern

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Light the Christmas sky with these glistening lanterns. The hanging pieces are made from ingenious materials like your common twigs and some pine leaves. Tiny Christmas lights highlight the big glowing bulb on the centerpiece. Hang it with your favorite red ribbon to add color to the piece.

Wrap it Up

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Give your outdoor pillars with the glorious feel with the matching garlands. Garnish the garlands with big red bows to give it hue and highlights. The corresponding yellow Christmas lights give the right amount of sparkle. Your door would then be the centerpiece of the package.

Light the Way

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Warm the chilly cold air of Christmas nights with these soothing candles. The size of the glass provides the perfect volume. The small fuchsia flowers inside boosts it further. Align it on your steps and make everyone feel your care and love.

Simple Outdoor Christmas Tree

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Christmas lights can be made a good tree if it is put on your back yard.  The radiant tree on your lawn lights up the whole place. This only proves that with a little bit of resourcefulness, you can decorate your yard magnificently. Just to make sure to provide a sturdy framework for the light and you are good to go.

Rustic and Woodsy

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If you happen to have antique wooden doors on your house, the complementing décor would be something that will highlight the magnificence of it. The proportionate branches and leafless plants make a good garnishment. The Christmas lights on the branches provide glitz to the whole appeal of the décor. It is unique but at the same time awe-inspiring.

Hanging Lanterns

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The white hanging lanterns on the branches would sure light the dark Christmas night. The complementing white pine cones adds accent to your back yard tree. The Christmas lights wrapped around the branches works its magic. The snowflakes swaying with the Christmas breeze adds a sense of calm and peace.

Hanging Treasure

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Give your grills something to be notice at with this hanging nest-like lantern. The small origami of birds resting on the nest made of twigs provides peaceful sense to the aura. The small Christmas lights encircling the nest give its radiance.  After a snowy night, the check the icicles and be stunned by how nature works it magic.

Christmas Bonfire

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Decorate your plants with something that resembles bonfire giving heat to the cold starry night. The sparkling green plastic twigs give the Christmas touch. The red taffeta cloth placed on the plastic twigs complement it well. Turn your old pots into something more memorable and exciting.

Have a Holly Jolly Christmas

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Turn your umbrella rack into something that harmonizes with the holiday season. The wreath ornamented with red and green fillers is in sync with the package. The potted poinsettia plant gives the old umbrella rack mass and volume. The signage will make sure to bring smile to those unexpected guests.

Wow.  An abundance of ideas for you.  Thanks to the following web site: