From the smoldering outback desert to the wet tropical rainsforests of Queensland, Australia is a diverse country that boasts an eclectic mix of native plants and flowers. Gardening with native plants is a simple way to help ensure the health of the local environment, as foreign plants may become invasive. Gardeners looking for native Australian plants have a wide variety to choose from.
A member of the myrtle family, lemon bottlebrush (Callistemon citrinus) is a flowering shrub native to Australia that boasts fuzzy, brilliant red or crimson flowers and lush dark green leaves. The evergreen shrub has a loose, open habit and may grow to be up to nine feet tall. The shrub gains its common name from its foliage, which has a distinctly lemony or citrus fragrance to it. Lemon bottlebrush works well as a specimen shrub in tropical gardens, and may be cultivated as an outdoor patio or porch plant. Lemon bottlebrush does best in USDA Zones 8B to 10, ideally in full, all-day sun. The plant prefers a well-drained, sandy loam, and will tolerate some saline. Lemon bottlebrush is moderately drought tolerant once established and does not require supplemental watering.
Digger's speedwell (Parahebe perfoliata) is a flowering perennial native to Australia that reaches an average height of between one to three feet. The plant sports dark green foliage, accented by small, pointed flowers that are either a rich royal blue or purple. An ideal addition to a rock garden, flower bed or border, digger's speedwell may be cultivated in USDA Zones 9 to 11. The plant prefers a well-drained soil in full or partial sunlight. Digger's speedwell should be watered on a regular basis. Slugs may become a problem for this plant, so check leaves occasionally and treat as needed.
Swan River Daisy
Swan River daisy (Genus Brachycome) is a low-growing flowering perennial native to sub-alpine and alpine regions of Australia, New Zealand and New Guinea. The plant may grown to be only six inches high, making it popular as a ground cover. Swan River daisy is notable for its blue-green foliage, and for its slightly fragrant purplish or bluish daisy blooms, which appear throughout summer and autumn. Swan River daisy may be grown in USDA Zones 9 to 11, in either full or partial sunlight. A well-draining soil that is watered on a regular basis works best for this plant. Slugs and snails may become an issue, so check the plant occasionally for pests.