Garden inspiration: your local council nursery

One of the best ways to find out what grows well in your local area is to visit your local council nursery. Many local government authorities around Australia have established nurseries to propagate indigenous plants and make them available to ratepayers, bushland regeneration teams and the general public. 

In Wollongong, the GreenPlan scheme run by Council offers a huge range of local species, as well as native plants from further afield that will do well in local conditions. Shellharbour and Kiama also have council nurseries that stock local species. Staff can provide advice on plants suitable for your garden and verge.

Here's what we picked up the last time we visited:
What a haul! Shade loving plants, succulents, rare species and bush tucker, all in the one spot...Image by Emma Rooksby. 
This is a pencil cedar (Polyscias murrayi), an elegant rainforest tree. Image by Emma Rooksby. 
Dwarf bleeding heart (Homalanthus stillingifolius) prefers shade, and forms a beautiful low shrub. Image by Emma Rooksby. 
The only problem with good local nurseries is that, unlike when you're wandering around in the bush, garden inspiration can result in over-indulgence (of the plant purchasing variety). Enjoy responsibly!

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