February 2022

Nature Strips – Biodiversity and Habitat in the Burbs

I started this journey as a verge gardener. I decided I’d had enough of mowing the grass in front of my house. And then the Brisbane City Council changed their rules about planting verge gardens. Westringia is a low-growing native shrub that provides flowers and habitat for bees, small birds and other wildlife. Occasional pruning […] Read more

Maintenance of Verge Gardens

Grass maintenance is easy to do without thinking and easy to outsource. The thousands of mow/edge/blow workers driving around the city are evidence of that. My neighbours’ buzz-men disturb my peace with their noise and fumes during the week.  They work quickly and produce reliably neat results.

Financial Benefits of Verge Gardening

It’s hard to assign monetary values to many of the savings and benefits but here are some suggestions that also show how to maximise the benefits and avoid pitfalls. Costs and Savings for the householder Time – the greatest cost in time is in setting up the garden. In some locations, you can reduce this […] Read more

Feedback from Passers-by

I’ve overheard conversations of people telling young children what the flowers are, seen an elderly lady reaching out to touch the pink cosmos, and I never know whether the missing flowers are the work of the possums or people. Either way, it’s good.

.Council versus Resident-planted Verge Gardens

The Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) has released a report, Temperature check: Greening Australia’s warming cities, by Monash University researchers, which shows increasing urban vegetation will become essential for our three largest cities – Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane – to reduce serious heatwave impacts by 2060-2080. I did an interview with ABC (story here) about the part […] Read more

But what about neglected verges?

This is a common question from people who oppose or are unfamiliar with verge gardening. What if they don’t look after it? Well, here are some photos I took of the council-maintained “grass” verge near my bus stop. It’s on a major road with houses backing on to it – which is presumably why council […] Read more

Why your verge should include flowers

Flowers are ambassadors for verge gardens. They help to make people comfortable with the initial disruption to the ubiquity of grass nature strips. Here are two main types of flowers to include on your verge.

Plants on my Brisbane Nature Strip

Like most councils, Brisbane has a list of suggested plants as part of their policy. You can use it as a guide, ask advice from your local community nursery, or look around to see what plants are growing in nearby gardens. If you asked me how many different species I have on the verge I […] Read more