Native plants in your backyard | Redland City Council

Native plants in your backyard

Native plants are adapted to our local conditions and more likely to survive and thrive in your garden. Don’t forget the importance of our local trees too as they provide important food, shelter and breeding places for our wildlife (from insects to mammals). They also provide shade, bush tucker, screens and wind breaks within your garden.

Listed below is a selection of easy-to-grow local plants that can attract native wildlife and create an attractive native and/or bush tucker garden.

Many of the plants listed below are on display at IndigiScapes Botanic Gardens and available to purchase from the IndigiScapes Native Nursery. You can also enjoy tasting some bush tucker flavours from the IndigiScapes Café or purchase some of the delightful bush tucker offering from the IndigiScapesgift shop. 


  • Never eat plants that are growing in an area where they may have been sprayed with pesticides or herbicides, or where the water supply could be polluted.
  • Never eat any part of any wild growing plant unless you are certain you can identify it.
  • No responsibility is taken by Redland City Council for any injury caused as a result of reliance on the information contained in this web page.

Groundcovers provide the foundation of your garden. They help to prevent weeds, and provide a source of food and shelter for many butterflies and ground dwelling animals such as lizards and frogs.

Redlands groundcovers - Blue flax lily




Blue Flax Lily - Dianella congesta
A tough plant that forms colonies on coastal sand dunes. Its purple berries are edible and the most pleasant tasting of the Flax Lilies.


Coastal Boobialla

Coastal Boobialla - Myoporum acuminatum
A low maintenance, salt tolerant ground cover. A single plant will cover a large area.


Redlands groundcovers - Kangaroo grass




Kangaroo Grass - Themeda triandra
Kangaroo Grass is a clumping and hardy plant that responds well to pruning, particularly after seeding. The seed heads are on long stalks with attractive shaped seeds that some birds can eat.


Redlands groundcovers - Pig Face





Pig Face - Carpobrotus glaucescens
A low growing, creeping succulent. Pink flowers all year round. Edible fruit.


Redlands groundcovers - Native Violet



Native Violet - Viola banksii
Popular groundcover that thrives anywhere it is wet.


Redlands groundcovers - Paper Daisy



Paper Daisy - Xerochrysum bracteatum
Long-lasting, pretty flowers make this plant popular for gardens and dried flower arrangements. Needs replacing annually, but you can use their fluffy seeds to help replace them.


Redlands groundcovers - River lily




River Lily - Crinum pedunculatum
An eye-catching succulent plant, great for landscaping. Produces large, white flowers in the summer. Juice from the leaves is reputed to relieve jellyfish stings.


Redlands groundcovers - Spiky Mat Rush



Creek Mat Rush - Lomandra hystrix
Extremely hardy, fast growing tussocks that are great for holding soil where the water flows. Fresh white leaf base is edible.


Redlands groundcovers - Yellow Buttons



Yellow Buttons - Chrysocephalum apiculatum
A hardy groundcover. Popular for its year-round yellow flowers.


Redlands groundcovers - Saw Sedge



Tall Sedge - Carex appressa
A clumping grass-like plant that grows to one metre tall. A suitable plant for moist areas beside fish or frog ponds.


Vines play an important role in the lifecycle of many of our butterflies. They also act as a nesting place for birds and can enhance the backyard garden by providing a screen along fences or on a garden gazebo.

Redlands vines - Bower of Beauty



Bower of Beauty - Pandorea jasminoides
A vigorous rainforest vine with fragrant, pink, tubular flowers and glossy leaves. Good for fences or trellises.


Redlands vines - Dusky coral pea



Dusky Coral Pea - Kennedia rubicunda
A hardy creeper, suitable for fences and trellises. Large dusky pea flowers are the feature.


Redlands vines - Sarsparilla Vine




Sarsaparilla Vine - Hardenbergia violacea
A small, dense vine featuring pretty purple flowers. Leaves used by early settlers as a tea substitute with a sarsaparilla taste.


Redlands vines - Scrambling Lily

Scrambling Lily - Geitonoplesium cymosum
A twining climber with the white flowers and black berries that can grow to about one metre tall. Will grow on a fence or in the garden as a low shrub.


Redlands vines - Snake Vine



Snake Vine - Hibbertia scandens
A hardy sprawling vine of coastal sand dunes with large yellow flowers.


Redlands vines - Birdwing Butterfly Vine




Birdwing Butterfly Vine - Pararistolochia praevenosa
A woody climbing vine with tubular creamy flowers. This is the host plant of the vulnerable Richmond Birdwing Butterfly (Ornithoptera richmondia)


Planting shrubs throughout the garden will not only brighten your garden with wildflowers but they will also provide significant food and refuge for wildlife, particularly small birds.



Melastoma malabathricum




Blue Tongue - Melastoma malabathricum
An ornamental shrub that grows to two metres and produces beautiful pink flowers through spring and summer. The fruit makes for a tasty snack that will leave your mouth blue.


Redlands shrubs - Coffee Bush



Coffee Bush - Breynia oblongifolia
A hardy shrub with attractive foliage that grows up to two metres. Produces bright red fruits in summer.


Redlands shrubs - Dwarf Banksia



Dwarf Banksia - Banksia oblongifolia
A multi-stemmed shrub that can grow up to one metre on sandy soils. Nectar-rich flowers can be soaked in water to make a sweet drink.


Redlands shrubs - Hairpin Banksia

Hairpin Banksia - Banksia spinulosa
An ornamental, multi-stemmed shrub that can grow up to two metres. It is hardy and produces many nectar-rich golden flower brushes in autumn.


Redlands shrubs - Hairy Bush Pea




Hairy Bush Pea - Pultenaea villosa
A small, weeping shrub with soft hairy leaves and yellow pea flowers in spring. Looks good planted in clusters.


Redlands shrubs - Hop Bush



Hop Bush - Dodonaea triquetra
A fast growing, open shrub that can grow between two and three metres. Features interesting long-lasting papery, triple-winged seed capsules.


Redlands shrubs - Midyim Berry



Midyim Berry - Austromyrtus dulcis
A low growing, coastal shrub with attractive foliage and pink new growth. Produces white flowers and pleasant tasting, edible berries. Berries can be eaten raw or made into jam.


Redlands shrubs - Pointed-leaf Hovea



Pointed-leaf Hovea - Hovea acutifolia
A popular shrub that is very hardy and grows up to two metres. It produces masses of purple pea flowers. When the seeds open, they make a ‘popping’ noise.


Redlands shrubs - Darling Pea




Darling Pea - Swainsona galegifolia
A small evergreen spreading shrub that grows up to one metre tall. Long flowering, producing a spike of pink pea flowers. Native bees love them.


Redlands shrubs - Sago Bush

Sago Bush - Ozothamnus diomifolius
An attractive, fast growing shrub, reaching heights of up to three metres. Produces masses of long-lasting white or pink flowers.


Redlands shrubs - Prickly Box



Prickly Box - Bursaria spinosa
A thorny shrub growing up to three metres that provides great habitat for small birds in the garden.


Redlands shrubs - Thyme Honey Myrtle



Thyme Honey Myrtle - Melaleuca thymifolia
A small, attractive shrub featuring purple feathery flowers. Grows up to one metre. It is quite hardy and pruning will make it denser.


Redlands shrubs - Wallum Bottlebrush




Wallum Bottlebrush - Melaleuca pachyphylla
A popular shrub with brilliant red or lime green flower spikes for most of the year. Hardy, responds well to pruning and grows up to two metres tall.


Redlands shrubs - Wild May

Wild May - Leptospermum polygalifolium
A common local tea-tree, popular with the gardeners for its profuse white flowers, weeping open growth and hardiness. Grows up to three metres tall.


Trees in your garden provide an important micro habitat and are a valuable to many species of wildlife, from insects to tree-dwelling mammals. They provide shade for the backyard and can help to keep your house cool in summer.

Redlands trees - Bangalow Palm




Bangalow Palm - Archontophoenix cunninghamiana
A tall palm with bright red berries, similar to the Alexandra Palm. This is the only palm tree native to the Redlands mainland.


Redlands trees - Blueberry Ash


Blueberry Ash - Elaeocarpus reticulatus
An attractive tree that can be pruned to shape. Bears lots of small, bell shaped flowers and bright blue fruits. Grows to six metres tall.

Redlands trees - Broad Leaf Paperbark



Broad-leaf Paperbark - Melaleuca quinquenervia
A tree with distinct papery bark that can grow up to 20 metres tall. Great for attracting wildlife. Oil extracted from leaves is used to treat colds.


Redlands trees - Brush Box



Brush Box - Lophostemon confertus
A fast-growing tree that can grow up to 25 metres tall. It is very hardy in dry conditions, a good bird attractor when flowering in spring, and also acts as a koala food tree.


Redlands trees - Coastal Banksia




Coastal Banksia - Bankisa integrifolia
 A versatile coastal tree up to 10 metres with golden, nectar-rich flower spikes. Flowers can be soaked in water to make a sweet drink.


Redlands trees - Eprapah Wattle


Eprapah Wattle - Acacia fimbriata var. perangusta
A hardy, fast growing tree with attractive weeping foliage and masses of yellow flowers in late winter. Can grow up to six metres.


Redlands trees - Forest She-oak



Forest She-oak - Allocasuarina torulosa
 A hardy ornamental tree with fine weeping foliage, great for wind breaks. Female trees produce woody seed cones which are important food for the vulnerable Glossy Black Cockatoo.


Redlands trees - Grey Myrtle




Grey Myrtle - Backhousia myrtifolia
A small ornamental tree, growing up to eight metres tall. Features showy, cream flowers and aromatic leaves when crushed. Hardy once established.


Redlands trees - Macaranga




Macaranga - Macaranga tanarius
Growing up to six metres tall, this is a fast growing tree, featuring huge, glossy leaves. A useful shade tree when creating a rainforest garden.


Redlands trees - Native Frangipani




Native Frangipani - Hymenosporum flavum
A fast growing tree, reaching to 10 metres tall. Features attractive foliage. Produces perfumed, yellow flowers.


Redlands trees - Native Mulberry Tree




Native Mulberry - Pipturus argenteus
A small, fast growing tree, occurring on rainforest edges. It can grow up to six metres tall and produces edible soft, fleshy fruits that are great for attracting birds.


Redlands trees - Pink Euodia



Pink Euodia - Melicope elleryana
A small, glossy-leaved tree, growing up to 10 metres tall. Features unusual clusters of pink flowers along the branches. Birds and butterflies love it.


Redlands trees - Pink Tips Bottlebrush



Pink Tips Bottlebrush - Melaleuca saligna
A small tree, growing up to five metres tall. Features papery bark, cream flowers and pink new growth. Hardy, but does best with some watering.


Redlands trees - Plunkett Mallee



Plunkett Mallee - Eucalyptus curtisii
A small, multi-stemmed gum tree that can grow up to six metres tall. Ideal for smaller yards. Hardy and bears masses of white flowers that attracts birds.


Redlands trees - Scribbly Gum eucalyptus


Scribbly Gum - Eucalyptus racemosa
An imperative koala food tree, featuring a distinct silver-coloured trunk covered in scribble marks. Grows up to 30 metres tall and prefers sandy soil.


Redlands trees - Small-leafed Lilly-pilly




Small-leafed Lilly-pilly - Syzygium luehmannii
Growing up to eight metres tall, this ornamental rainforest tree features dense, glossy foliage and edible red or pink fruits.

Lilly Pilly fruits are mostly used for jams but can be used in fruit salads, sweet and savoury sauces, syrups, relishes, puddings, muffins, soft drinks, ice cream or to accompany meat dishes.


Redlands trees - Tallowwood



Tallowwood - Eucalyptus microcorys
A fast growing tree with fibrous, brown-orange bark. A favourite of the local koalas and occurs naturally on sandy soil.


Redlands trees - Water Gum




Water Gum - Tristaniopsis laurina
An attractive and compact shade tree, reaching up to 15 metres tall. It produces clusters of small, yellow flowers that contrast against its glossy dark leaves.


Redlands trees - Wheel of Fire




Wheel of Fire - Stenocarpus sinuatus
A rainforest tree with spectacular red flowers resembling a spiked wheel. Grows up to eight metres tall.