Expert Tips

Hedging Your Bets

Digby Growns is the Senior Plant Breeder at Kings Park and Botanic Garden in Western Australia and one of the country’s leading native plant experts. Digby lives, breathes and speaks plant botany and is here to share some expert tips for your own Native Plant Project…

Digby’s Top 5 Hedging & Screening Plants…

#1. Adenanthos sericeus – Woolly Bush

This very tactile bush provides soft, velvety grey-green foliage to the ground. Adaptable plant for a wide range of soil types, for planting in both sun or shade that can be pruned for more formal hedging styles or left to grow more freely if you’re after a less stylised feel for your garden. This upright plant with delightfully silky, silvery foliage makes a very useful screening plant, cut foliage for arrangements and even an Australian native Christmas tree.

Add to a Native Plant Box from the e-nursery here


#2. Hakea laurina – Pincushion Hakea

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A hardy dense foliaged plant can grow 3-6metres high and 2-5 metres wide – and with masses of delightful globular red and cream flowers in autumn and winter – it makes for a pretty hedging plant. They’re prolific at attracting birds, and other insects too. Plant it in a sunny spot to ensure best flowering that begins with buds in late summer.  A shadier spot means less flowers and with shallow roots be mindful of windy weather. Frost tolerant, but take care of new growth.

Order here from the Native Plant Project e-nursery.

#3. Grevillea ‘Robyn Gordon’

What’s not to love about one of the most popular grevilleas – it flowers all year round, attracts birds and is happy in a wide range of soil types and climates. It’s growth is compact so perfect for a low hedging effect. Keep trimming off spent flowers and feed in spring with a good native fertilizer to keep this otherwise low maintenance plant in top shape. Try it in full sun or light shade, and mass plant to ensure to help create the desired hedging effect.

Order this variety and other grevillea from the Native Plant Project nursery here. 

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#4. Pimelea ferruginea ‘Magenta Mist’

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The classic mounded shape of this plant makes it ideal for more formal gardens and low hedging, particularly in coastal areas.  Bright pink flowers in spring will create an almost carpet like effect planted en masse. Be sure to feed with a good native fertiliser and prune after flowering to encourage dense growth.

#5. Grevillea preissii

A hardy plant for low growing hedging and can be pruned readily to offer more formal hedging effect. Red flowers provide winter and spring colour in your garden.

Meet our Native Plant Project Expert ~

Digby Growns is the Senior Plant Breeder at Kings Park and Botanic Garden. He manages programs in the breeding and development of Anigozanthos, Boronia, Chamelaucium, Corymbia, Grevillea, Leptospermum and Scaevola.  He has worked for many years on the development of Australian native plants for horticulture and over 40 new varieties of native plants including the hybrid Chamelaucium ‘Pearlflower’ series and Grevillea ‘RSL Spirit of ANZAC’. He leads research into new technology developments in plant tissue culture, biotechnology and plant breeding. Digby shares his knowledge with Native Plant Project in a regular ‘Top 5 Picks”…