Perth’s climate may be tough to garden in, but not impossible! With a few handy tricks and a bit of cunning, creating the perfect outdoor summer garden is easier than you might think. Not only that – if you’re savvy about what plants you choose, but your water usage will also drop – making your summer garden cheap to run too. Sure – it’s sunny, hot, and dry – but with the right planning and sufficient irrigation, creating the perfect summer garden can exceed your expectations. Here are some hot tips to support your biggest and brightest summer garden dreams.
Curate your wish-list
Jot down a list of plants: the ones you really want to see in your garden. It’s like choosing a close friends list for a party. You may have to be brutal. Prioritising plants that love the sun is always a smart idea. Amongst these are stunning natives and succulents. They require less water than other plants and will be sure to survive the hottest of Perth’s summer days. Have a chat with your local nursery to find out which plants will suit your soil type. Living next to the ocean will mean you’re working with a sandier, saltier soil composition to that of the Perth Hills which is more clay-based. Choosing plants based on soil type will also ensure your garden is a success.
Make your plan
Get your pen and pencil out. It’s time to draw. Don’t worry you don’t need a degree in architecture or planning to get this done. Sketch a rough map of your garden – bird’s eye view is best. With a list of plants at the ready – populate the spaces where you think the plants will best thrive and add value to your outdoor space. There’s no shortage of inspiration on the web, and a quick Instagram search will leave you overflowing with incredible garden ideas.
Celebrate your local environment
Whether you’re an urbanite, farmer, or beachside dweller, celebrating your surroundings is always a good way of ensuring your summer garden will be a success. Choosing local natives that thrive in the dry Perth summers will not only become a special homage to the land but also lessen your dependence on thirst, water reliant plants. Just ask for the natives’ section at any garden centre and choose based on season and water dependence.
Always think ahead
When you’re in the planning and sketching phase, think about which plants will grow best in certain places. For example, planting wisteria at the bottom of a climbable wall will yield beautiful results in a few years, but planting bamboo under an eave may result in structural problems down the track. Be smart about placement – and get a bit creative!
Gloves on, hat on, and ensuring you and the plants stay well hydrated, it’s time to unleash your green thumb. When you’re transferring from pots to garden beds, be sure to make the transition as smooth as possible. When choosing where plants will grow – grouping species that require similar amounts of water is a smart way of optimising your irrigation system or watering needs. Always ensure you’re giving the plant the best chance possible by ensuring the appropriate density and richness of the soil. If you’re planning succulents – have rocks ready to place around the top for stability and aesthetics.
Watch your watering routine
Summer gardens that rely on plenty of sunlight will also crave just the right amount of water or moisture. For best results, check on the label or talk to the experts at Luke’s Landscaping about watering requirements – every plant will have its own water needs, and overdoing it with summer plants can be a life or death situation.