Toggle navigation

Plants: Indestructibles

Wild iris

Plant Name: Dietes grandiflora

Description: green, erec,t sword-like foliage that bears iris-like flowers over summer.

Size: 1m

Special comments: little attention needed other than occasional dead-heading over summer and the removal of old dead leaves. Tough in full sun to semi-shade.


Photo - Matthew Carroll



Plant Name: Agapanthus sp.

Description: long, strap-like fleshy leaves feature strong flower heads in various colours over summer.

Size: foliage to 50cm – flowers above. Dwarf varieties available.

Special comments: look at some of the new varieties being released that feature dark colours, such as ‘Black Pantha’ and ‘Back in Black’. An advantage of these new cultivars is that they are generally sterile and so won’t seed into bush areas causing weed problems.


Photo -


Knobby club rush

Plant Name: Ficinia nodosa (syn. Isolepis nodosa)

Description: a clump of fine green stems are adorned with brown spiky flower heads over the summer months.

Size: 90cm

Special comments: this tough Australian native handles sandy soils. Its foliage is quite architectural and its flowers add interest over summer.


Photo - Matthew Carroll

Coral plant

Plant Name: Russelia equisetiformis

Description: long arching stems with fine foliage feature bright red flowers.

Size: 1.5m

Special comments: originating in Mexico, this colourful plant is useful to plant as a spill over embankments. The vibrant red tubular flowers appear throughout the year.


Photo - Matthew Carroll


Plant Name: Phormium tenax

Description: upright foliage in fan shapes come in a variety of colours and variegations.

Size: up to 2m, though most around 1 – 1.5m

Special comments: this is a tough plant from New Zealand where it inhabits the coastline. Various colours and sizes are now available at nurseries to suit most sunny locations.



Grevillea 'Golden Lyre'

Plant name: Grevillea 'Golden Lyre'

Description: perhaps one of the best hybrid grevillea of all with silvery foliage and stunning golden yellow flowers.

Size: 1.5m x up to 5m wide

Special comments: thrives in coastal climates; low-growing habit makes it great for embankments; 20cm long flowers drip with nectar and attract birds. Trim hard in early spring.



Photo - Matthew Carroll


Text: Matthew Carroll

About this article

Author: Matthew Carroll