Popular garden designs for the Mid West

This guide for the Mid West region will help you take a fresh look at your garden and make it lower maintenance as well as more waterwise and beautiful.

Featured design: a cottage garden

Often informal in layout, a cottage garden usually contains a combination of annuals, perennials, brightly flowering shrubs andherbaceous plants. English in origin (yet waterwise through modern plant choices) cottage gardens burst with colour and fragrance.

Example of Cottage Garden design

Other garden design ideas for this region

Often rugged and relaxed, a coastal garden is full of hardy plants that can withstand strong winds.

Plant species

Abrv.  Common name Botanical name
Egk Eremophila ‘Kalbarri Carpet’
Eremophila glabra *
Pg  Portulaca Portulaca grandiflora * 
Et  Barrier Saltbush  Enchylaena tomentosa * Δ 
Brai  Swan River Daisy  Brachyscome iberidifolia * 
Cq  Kwowdjard or One Sided Bottlebrush Calothamnus quadrifidus * 
C Summer Starflower  Calytrix * 
Eo Weeooka or Twinleak Emu Bush Eremophila oppositifolia *
Sa Silver Cassia Senna artemisioides *
Fp Sea Heath Frankenia pauciflora *
Grasses/Strappy Leaf Plants 
Anfb  Kangaroo Paw (Dwarf) Bush Gem Series Anigozanthos flavidus *
Coa  Golden Conostylis  Conostylis aurea * 
Co  Swamp Sheoak Casuarina obesa * Δ
Ht Cottonwood Hibiscus tiliaceus * 

* These species are endemic to WA  Δ Optional species (not included in illustration)

Coastal Garden example 
Creating pleasures for all the senses, a Mediterranean garden has a combination of colours, productive plants, interesting foliage and flowering plants. Complete this look by incorporating design elements such as paths and rustic benches.

Plant species

Abrv.  Common name Botanical name
Alp Aloe
Aloe polyphylla
Bn Honeypot Dryandra Banksia nivea *
Eb Eremophila biserrata Eremophila biserrata
Grpg Grevillea ‘Gilt Dragon’ Grevillea preissii *
Grt  Grevillea tenuiloba
Grevillea tenuiloba *
As Lilly Pilly Acmena smithii
Bo Bougainvillea ‘Temple Fire’ Bougainvillea spectabilis
Grp Grevillea pinaster (Prostrate form) Grevillea pinaster *
K Kalanchoe Kalanchoe
Pel Geranium Pelargonium
Grasses/Strappy Leaf Plants 
Aga Agave Agave attenuata
Anm Kangaroo Paw Anigozanthos manglesii *
Oe Olive Olea europaea
Pg Pomegranate Punica granatum
* These species are endemic to WA  

Example of Mediterranean Garden

Having your own vegetable garden is a great way to enjoy fresh and healthy produce. It is possible regardless of your garden size and using waterwise gardening techniques will minimise your water use.

The location of your garden and what you create it in are important decisions when establishing your garden. Vegetables need a good source of sunlight; somewhere not too sunny in summer with sufficient sunlight in winter is ideal. A spot protected from wind by a building or hedge will keep your vegetables happy.

When choosing where to establish your garden, if space is limited, a raised container is ideal as they keep the garden contained and can be moved to suit the weather conditions.

If you have plenty of space a garden bed can be established in the ground, as it involves less set up but can’t be moved.

Deciding what to grow and planting seasonal vegetables will ensure the best results and minimise water use. By planting from seeds you can stagger when the vegetables are ready and planting from seedlings will see them mature at once. Whichever you choose, make sure you plant vegetables that will be eaten and put to good use. Hand watering twice a week or installing sub-irrigation or drippers will see the best results in your garden. For more details on waterwise gardening techniques for your vegetable garden please refer to the Your guide to a waterwise garden brochure.

By transforming your verge into a waterwise garden you will create an attractive hassle-free garden that requires less upkeep.

Before planning your verge, check with your local council for any guidelines or restrictions in place.

To transform your lawned verge firstly apply a herbicide with glyphosate as the active ingredient. After a few months, the lawn will breakdown and act as a source of nutrients for new plants. There is no need to remove the lawn, just plot out the design and dig holes for the new plants and watch your new waterwise verge come to life.

Example of Verge Garden

Plant species

Abrv.  Common name Botanical name
Hp Snake Bush
Hemiandra pungens
Gro Grevillea ‘Gin Gin Gem’ Grevillea obtusifolia
Grcu Grevillea ‘Flat Jack’ Grevillea curviloba
Adc Adenanthos ‘Coral Carpet’ Adenanthos cuneatus
Egc Eremophila ‘Compactum’
Eremphila glabra
Low Shrubs 
Bn Honeypot Dryandra Banksia nivea
Al Acacia lasiocarpa Acacia lasiocarpa
Oa Olearia ‘Little Smokie’ Olearia axillaris
Wd Westringia ‘Jervis Gem’ Westringia dampieri
Grasses/Strappy Leaf Plants 
Conc Grey Cottonheads Conostylis candicans
Myp Creeping Boobialla Myoporum parvifolium
Anm Kangaroo Paw Angiozanthus manglesii
Po Native Iris or Purple Flag  Pattersonia occidentalis 
Dianella ‘Silver Streak’
Dr  Dianella ‘Little Rev’
Dianella revoluta 
Fn  Knotted Club Rush  Ficinia nodosa 
Lc  Little Con  Lomandra confertifolia 
Bj  Bare Twig-rush  Baumea juncea 

Watering your new garden

A typical suburban block will thrive on irrigation on 2 watering days per week in summer (half that in spring and autumn).

If planting a new garden, you can ensure it gets the best chance to establish itself by applying for a watering exemption. Once your garden is established you will need to abide by the state-wide watering rosters and daytime sprinkler ban between 9am and 6pm.

Check my watering days

Look for the Waterwise symbol

Waterwise ApprovedFor professional assistance with saving water in and around your home and garden, contact a Waterwise Garden Centre, Garden Designer, Garden Irrigator, Irrigation Design Shop, Landscaper, Plumber or Water Auditor. When creating your new garden look for Waterwise and Smart Approved WaterMark symbols when choosing gardening products such as mulch, plants, greywater systems and sprinklers.

How to start creating your waterwise garden