The next step in caring for our native bushland around the Bays following weed removal is planting alternatives.
I great place to start is Grow Me Instead. The site gives many good options and photos to help identify weeds and plants.
Below are some alternatives to get you started.
Invasive plant – Cootamundra Wattle
Cootamundra Wattle is native to central-western NSW. This wattle can cross-pollinate and can become invasive taking over from our local and beautiful but often endangered local wattle species. Generally, the rule with introducing wattles into your garden is to check that they are native to the Central Coast.
Alternatives: Coastal Myall, White Sallee Wattle, Blue Bush
Invasive plant – Agapanthus
Agapanthus is very popular but invades bushland when planted nearby or dumped in near bushland.
Alternatives: the native Swamp Lily and Blue Flax Lily( Dianella) a grass like plant with attractive leaves and blue berries.
Invasive Plant – Butterfly bush (Buddleia davidii)
Some Buddleia varieties produce seeds that will spread by wind, water, and dumped garden rubbish. They grow readily in damp areas crowding out natural species and destroying habitat.
Alternatives – Buddleia-Spring Promise or Buddleia-Wattle bird
Invasive plant – Yellow bamboo and Black bamboo
Bamboos have spreading rhizomes, roots structures that can cover great distances.
Alternatives: bamboo varieties Slender Weavers or Gold Strip or Chungi.
Invasive plant – Asparagus Fern
Asparagus fern is widespread on roadsides and in bushland around all our three bays. Spread by birds, small animals and dumping of garden waste. Asparagus fern deprives other plants of light and nutrients and destroys habitat.
Alternatives: Grevilleas, Ferns (varieties: Prickly Rasp, Common ground,) or Creeping Boobialla. (e.g.Myoporum parvifolium).
Invasive Plant – Cocos Palm
Cocos Palms produce a multitude of seeds attractive to possums, bats and birds. Seeds are quick to spread and germinate.
Alternatives – Cabbage Palm, Alexander Palm, Bangalow Palm
Invasive Plant – Golden Bells
Golden Bells seeds are scattered by birds and through movement of soil, water and garden refuse.
Alternatives – Native Frangipani, Fringed Wattle, Honey Gem or Sandra Gordon grevilleas
Where to buy plants
Specialist native nurseries. An affordable local option is the Community Environment Network (CEN) a not for profit Central Coast organisation selling only local native plant varieties for $3- $5 on the first Saturday of each month. Visit CEN for more information.