Some garden soils are situated in areas that have really no goodness at all for most plants.Here on the Gold Coast, and most coastal regions in the area there is a lot of sandy soil which has no goodness. Also the shaley soils of the Robina and hinterland Gold Coast areas really don’t provide much goodness for plants at all.
Sandy soils also don’t hold onto water for a long time, and soils like shale don’t allow the roots to penetrate to get any goodness.
A perfect plant for these situations are Grevilleas.
There are many varieties, with many different colours, foliage types and plants heights.
Grevilleas are very good in times of dry. They thrive in sandy soils especially growing when there is sufficient water. They are very colourful plants, most species or varieties putting on a show nearly all year round.
Equally, they are good for penetrating harder clay or shaley soils.
Grevilleas don’t need any fertilisers, and they especially don’t need phosphorus fertilisers (phosphorus not being present in poor soils). Water is usually they only extra that they don’t mind.
To care for them, you must make sure that the soils never get waterlogged. They can get sooty mould on them, but you can just cut off the affected foliage. They are medium short lived. Pruning them regularly can help prolong their life.
When pruning be careful not to cut them past the green wood. Especially not in drier weather. Usually the brown wood is the point where the plant will not regenerate more shoots.
The greatest benefit you can get out of having a Grevillea in your garden is that they are full of honey which means they are great bird attractants. Rainbow lorikeets for example will love this plant.
Some of the better varieties are Grevillea ‘Robyn Gordon‘, ‘Moonlight’, ‘Honey Gem’, ‘Orange Marmalade’,
G. lanigera, ‘Misty Pink’