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drought-proof

It might seem silly to think about drought proofing your garden with the steady bouts of rain we’ve been having and especially considering what it was like last summer. However drought conditions are really never as far away as you think. We had some record hot days in January!

There’s a common misconception that natives require less water, which can be true, but in the initial planting stages, before a native tree or shrub becomes established, it will need just as much water as anything else. By choosing natives from your local area though you’ll go a long way towards establishing a drought hardy garden.

The first step, like in any garden, is to draw up a plan and a list of trees and shrubs you’d like to consider. Grouping together plants with similar watering needs is a good way to manage things. Choose trees and shrubs that complement your house with their height and spread. Natives will certainly require less water once they have settled in but there’s also many plants from areas with a similar climate to our own such as the Mediterranean, Mexico and Africa that can add an exciting quality to a drought hardy garden.

I’d always start with a base of natives, mostly from your local area. Councils will usually have a list of trees and shrubs local to your area that you can start with. But in saying that, you can certainly inter-plant with things like dietes, euphorbia, bromeliads, phormium along with the agave and other succulents. The crepe myrtle is another tough customer (once established) but the key is to do your research as you compile your list to find out what’s best suited.

Once you’ve decided on the mix of plants the next step is to sort out the soil. Wetting agents can be a useful addition to stop beds from drying out. Mulch and compost will retain the moisture in your beds and remember that even natives can benefit from fertilising every now and then once they’re in.

Your ultimate goal could be environmental sustainability as well as low watering needs. Think about a grey water system and/or recycled rainwater via a tank to better manage your water requirements.

A drought hardy garden can look fantastic but remember it will still require some attention, especially in its infancy, so you can’t just plant and forget about it!

Marrickville Council

Committed to the management of its urban forest Marrickville Council requires written permission for any tree management work, including removal, on trees 5m in height or over, a canopy spread 3m or over or a trunk diameter 300mm or greater. Pruning work of less than 10% of canopy or on branches less than 100mm do not require council approval. General Notes on Councils: The pruning or removal of any trees on public land, parks, bushland or Heritage Items need special permission from ALL councils. The Noxious Weeds Act 1993 lists trees not requiring permission to remove. Back to...

Apr
13

Ku-ring-gai Council

A Tree Preservation Order adopted by Ku-ring-gai Council in 2006 stipulates a tree, whether native or exotic, of 5m or more in height or with a trunk width of 150mm or more at ground level requires council approval for its removal or for any pruning work. Trees or branches that are dead, directly over roof lines, within half a metre of electricity wires or within 3m of an existing dwelling do not require council consent for their removal. General Notes on Councils: The pruning or removal of any trees on public land, parks, bushland or Heritage Items need special...

Apr
13

Hornsby Shire Council | Tree Preservation Order

How does Hornsby Council’s Tree Preservation Order affect you? From 6 September 2011, the rules for tree preservation in Hornsby Shire Council changed. In summary, the changes are: Trees protected by the new Tree Preservation Order are trees that are indigenous to Hornsby Shire. For a full list, download the document Trees indigenous to Hornsby Shire - 19kb Trees growing within designated Heritage Conservation Areas (as noted in the Hornsby Shire Heritage Development Control Plan) or trees that are listed as heritage items...

Apr
13

Woollahra Council

Tree Preservation Order Public Trees Trees and Development Work Trees Reference and Resources The Woollahra Council Tree Preservation Order came into effect in 2006 with the goal of maintaining the ‘urban forest’ within its council area. Under the order any tree or palm on private land with a height over 5m or a diameter spread of more than 3m needs council approval for removal –unless it is a noxious weed, dead or proven to be dangerous to property or life. General Notes on Councils: The pruning or removal of any trees on public land, parks, bushland or Heritage Items need special permission from ALL councils. The...

Nov
30

Hunters Hill Council

TPO info plus info re: Significant Tree Register Hunter’s Hill Council implemented a Tree Preservation Order in 1982 requiring written approval from council for  the ringbarking, lopping, topping, cutting down or the removal of any tree greater than 3.5m in height or with a trunk width of over 300mm –exceptions being Rhus (Toxicodendron succedaneum) or Privet (Ligustrum lucidum). General Notes on Councils: The pruning or removal of any trees on public land, parks, bushland or Heritage Items need special permission from ALL councils. The Noxious Weeds Act 1993 lists trees not requiring permission to remove. Back to Council...

Nov
30

Leichhardt Council

Tree Preservation Order Any tree on private property within the Leichhardt Local Government Area requires written consent for its removal if it is 4m or greater in height or with a trunk diameter of 200mm or greater measured 1m from the ground. Pruning of more than 10% of a trees canopy also requires notification to council with all pruning work in accordance with Australian Pruning Standards AS 4373-1996. General Notes on Councils: The pruning or removal of any trees on public land, parks, bushland or Heritage Items need special permission from ALL councils. The Noxious Weeds Act 1993 lists trees not requiring permission...

Nov
30

Sydney City Council

Tree Management Policies Trees on Private Property Tree Management Benefits of Trees Street Trees Tree Management Policies Guidelines for Arborits Reports Chinese Hackberry Hydepark Plane Trees Register of Significant Trees Tree Donation Policy Trees and Neighbours Trees on Private Property Guidelines for Arborits Reports As of the 1st June 2004 the Council of the City of Sydney has a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) covering any tree equal to or exceeding 5m in height or with a trunk circumference of 300mm (for single trunk species) or 100mm (for multi-trunk species) measured at 1m from ground level. Written consent from council is needed for removal unless a tree can be demonstrated to council it is either...

Nov
30

Pittwater Council

Tree Preservation Order Trees on Private Land Tree Preservation Order / Exempt Species Table Tree Removal Application Tree Works on Council Land Breach of Tree Preservation Order A Tree Preservation and Management Order was first resolved by Pittwater Council on 21st June 1983. Under current amendments written permission is required from council for the removal of any tree exceeding 3m in height, a canopy greater than 5m or with a trunk bole greater than 500mm. Under the order any cycad or mangrove, regardless of dimensions, needs written consent for treework also. General Notes on Councils: The pruning or removal of any trees on public land, parks, bushland...

Nov
30

Warringah Council

Tree Preservation Order The Warringah Council Tree Preservation Order covers the removal or wilful destruction of trees, meaning palm or woody perennial, greater than 5m in height or one that has a canopy width of over 10m –unless it is within a heritage conservation area or an environmental weed. Pruning work of less than 10% of the trees branches or root system does not require a permit from council. General Notes on Councils: The pruning or removal of any trees on public land, parks, bushland or Heritage Items need special permission from ALL councils. The Noxious Weeds Act 1993 lists trees not requiring...

Nov
30

Manly Council

Tree Preservation Order Tree Preservation Order Exempt Species Manly Council’s Tree Preservation Order 2008 states that a tree permit is required to remove a tree that is over 5m in height or to prune more than 10% of the existing canopy of such a tree. Exemptions may be granted if the tree is considered by council to be dead, dying or diseased, within 3m and proving to be damaging to property, or in some cases of overplanting if the removal will benefit the remaining trees. General Notes on Councils: The pruning or removal of any trees on public land, parks, bushland or Heritage...

Nov
30