How to find space for more plants | Gardening Hacks | Gardening Australia

Gardening Hacks
Josh Byrne always likes to try and grow as many types of plant as he can in his garden but as it’s filling up he’s having to be more creative to find new spots that will work and bring something new to his outdoor space. He identifies four garden spaces and finds four plants perfectly suited to growing there.

00:22 | An obvious place to start looking is to target bare patches.
There is a spot under a gleditsia tree but he doesn’t want to dig and disturb its roots and any plant would have to endure the dry environment and summer shade/winter sun under this deciduous tree.
Josh’s solution is a bromeliad that can be planted in a plastic tree well filled with soil that will create a raised bed above the tree roots – perfect for a shallow-rooted epiphyte that needs good drainage.

03:02 | Vertical space – in this case the fork in a tree.
Josh has an air plant that will thrive in this situation – they get the water and nutrients from the air and the surface they’re growing on, and need good light and ventilation. He ties it with a rubber-coated wire that the plant will eventually cover and Josh will loosen to ensure the tree doesn’t get constricted. Air plants need spraying with water twice a week and a liquid fertiliser misted on a few times a year.

04:18 | Josh sees another opportunity on top of a wall.
It’s a good spot for a container so he will convert an old watering can that he has and plant it out with Dichondra ‘Silver Falls’ so the silver-grey foliage contrasts with the red brick as it cascades down. He drills five drainage holes in the base, then puts in a layer of expanded clay balls in the bottom to ensure good drainage, before filling with good potting mix and backfilling around the plants. They will get morning sun and afternoon shade, which will be perfect for them.

05:41| A bare timber screen is the perfect spot for a focal point.
Josh has just the thing – an Elkhorn Fern he has mounted on a timber backing. It has been designed to simply hang on the timber, and will sit in a spot that gets shade protection from the afternoon sun. Elkhorns are epiphytic – they grown on trees – so are perfectly suited to this sort of situation.

Featured Plants:
Bromeliad (Neoregelia cv.)
Air Plant (Tillandsia cv.)
Dichondra (Dichondra ‘Silver Falls’)
Elkhorn Fern (Platycerium bifurcatum)

USEFUL LINKS:
https://www.abc.net.au/gardening/factsheets/ripper-idea—elkhorn-fern/10994914

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