With its temperate climate and frequent rainfall all year round, Melbourne offers a huge range of possibilities when it comes to growing plants. Whether you prefer the availability and low maintenance of native species or you're taking on the challenge of a tropical garden, anything's possible as long as you consider factors such as your soil type, plant placement and watering requirements.
Benefits of native gardens
Melbourne's climate may be friendly to many exotic species, but if you want a garden that involves a minimum of maintenance and stress, nothing beats going native.
Like all Australian plants, indigenous Melbourne species thrive in the heat, but they are also frost-resistant so you won't usually have to take steps to shelter them during the winter months. Choosing native species is the most environmentally friendly option too, as they require less watering and are compatible with local fauna.
A native garden doesn't have to be boring and samey either, as there are plenty of options to choose from depending on your location and taste.
Gardens close to the sea require plants that can tolerate direct sunlight, sandy soil and salt in the air. Coastal rosemary, dwarf bottlebrush and tea trees are ideal coastal plants, the latter also providing shelter from the breeze.
If you're eager to bring the wild bush into your backyard, forest plants such as acacia, eucalypts and grevilleas grow just as easily in the suburbs as in the Dandenongs.
More challenging than native gardens, tropical plants can still thrive in Melbourne, especially those that are tolerant of the cold such as elaeocarpus and palms, providing a green, leafy backdrop in all seasons. Many plants sourced from New Zealand combine all-weather resilience and the colourful tropical look, including cordylines and flaxes.
Sustainability is a growing passion for many Australians, and Melbourne gardeners can grow an extensive range of edible plants to save on the grocery bills. Popular options include fruit such as Davidson plums, guava, limes and passion fruit, which can be grown directly in the soil, in hanging containers or on climbing vines in a shaded pergola.
Speak to our verandah specialists
If you're thinking about enhancing your outdoor space with a new verandah, pergola or other quality installation, get in touch with Install A Veranda on 1800 000 504.
Our team of design experts will help you find the ideal option for your home and garden, with thousands of design possibilities to choose from.