Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Make Your Garden Attractive to Birdlife; Weekender Columnist Neil Fisher Is from Fisher's Nursery, North Rockhampton. You Can Chat with Neil on Radio 4ro's Gardening Hour after the 6am News on Tuesdays

Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Make Your Garden Attractive to Birdlife; Weekender Columnist Neil Fisher Is from Fisher's Nursery, North Rockhampton. You Can Chat with Neil on Radio 4ro's Gardening Hour after the 6am News on Tuesdays

Article excerpt

IT SEEMS all of Central Queensland is blooming this year for spring. Does it get any better? The past two-and-a-half weeks has also seen an increase in birdlife in the garden. For me birdlife is the most enjoyable addition to the garden.

Many times in recent years I have had requests for advice from gardeners wanting to attract birdlife to their garden. There are literally hundreds of plants available to the home gardener these days that will attract large numbers of birds.

I have listed below a selection of my favourite varieties. These particular varieties may not be available at most nurseries, but some specialist growers should be able to source these plants, as they will give a spectacular display and create interest in their garden all year round.

The best flowering of all bottlebrushes would be a local native from Mount Wheeler.

Now known as Melaleuca hemisticta the Mount Wheeler Bottlebrush was sold as Callistemon polandii var. Mt Wheeler for many years. Melaleuca hemisticta is a very bushy shrub growing to 2m high with dark green leaves and pink new growth. Masses of small bright red brushed tipped with gold appear most of the year. This plant is suitable for most conditions and is very attractive to birds.

Brachychiton bidwillii is a miniature kurrajong that grows very well in local gardens and can reach a height of about 3m. In spring, bunches of large bell-shaped pink flowers, clustered around the branches, will make this plant a feature in most gardens.

Eremophila polyclada or Weeping Emu Bush is a tall ornamental cascading shrub with narrow leaves growing up to 4m high. Profuse white flowers will cover the plant from early spring to late summer. Grows best in a sunny open position and will tolerate most soil types. This plant is frost- and drought-tolerant and responds well to pruning. …

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