Spring is a colourful time in the garden, a fitting and visual reflection of a brand new growing season. An absolute standout in full-flower this week is Grevillea curviloba ‘Flat Jack’. This hardy perennial groundcover grows to 4m wide, creeping into the rambling shrub category, is laden with white to cream flowers with a sensational honey perfume during spring. These spider-like flowers are highly attractive to bees and nectar-feeding birds.
Grevillea curviloba ‘Flat Jack’ appreciates a sunny to partly-shaded aspect with at least moderate drainage and protection from severe frosts. Once established, it will tolerate dry conditions. Prune upward growing foliage if a more prostrate habit is desired. Grow this lovely, fast-growing Australian native as part of a mixed shrub planting, habitat planting or mass foreground planting. Avoid planting it near footpaths, however, as it has moderately prickly foliage.
Sturdy shrubs for free
If you have just purchased a brand new residential block of land in the ACT, then it might be time to visit Yarralumla Nursery Wholesale (YNW) and get a hold of some new shrubs through the free Plant Issue Scheme.
YNW general manager Jane Carder says there are a range of acclimatised and hardy cool climate plants available, which will also tolerate Canberra’s drier conditions. These include exotic and native groundcovers, shrubs and hedging plants.
“Since the free Plant Issue Scheme was introduced in 1930, it has placed a strong emphasis on preserving Canberra’s ‘Garden City’ concept,” she says.
Those eligible are able to collect their plants from the Nursery between 9am and 3.30pm on weekdays.
“You will need to bring along your Certificate of Occupancy and rates notice as evidence to claim the free plant allocation.”
YNW offers three plant packages for you to select from: Package A contains your choice of 20 plants in 140mm sized pots; package B contains 10 plants in 200mm sized pots; Package C is a mixture of 10 plants in 140mm and 5 plants in 200mm pots.
For more information on the free Plant Issue Scheme, or on YNW, visit tccs.act.gov.au
Canberra City Farm Annual Open Day
Since launching in 2017, Canberra City Farm has gone from strength to strength. The allotment gardens have been expanded, roundhouses have been constructed in the commercial kitchen area, a market garden has been established by the ‘Department of Broccoli’, Canberra Heritage Chickens have rejuvenated the chook sheds, Woden SEE-Change have begun the conversion of an old shed into a passivhaus demonstration site, and an enclosed propagation area has been constructed.
This year’s Open Day will include farm tours, cob oven pizzas, bicycle blender smoothies, rocket stove demonstrations, kids’ activities, demonstrations and talks, international cuisines and local delicacies, stalls of other local groups and more.
When: Sunday 11 November 10am-3pm
Where: Canberra City Farm, 2 Dairy Road, Fyshwick
For more: ccfarm.org.au
Millthorpe Garden Ramble
Escape to Millthorpe, a beautiful heritage listed village near Orange in Central West NSW, for its annual Garden Ramble on 3-4 November. As well as the gardens, wander the streets of Millthorpe for fashion boutiques, home accessories stores and eclectic antiques. There’s accommodation on offer and cafes, pubs, cellar doors and a hatted restaurant for fine dining. Several local artists also open their studios and galleries over the weekend. Tickets are available via trybooking.com, at the Ramble HQ and all the gardens. Download the 2018 Millthorpe Garden Ramble Brochure to find the map, with a list of gardens and descriptions.
When: Saturday 3 and Sunday 4 November 10am-4pm
Where: Millthorpe, NSW
For more: millthorpevillage.com.au/events-venues