Have you ever noticed the lovely front verges in your neighbourhood which have been converted from grass to native trees or shrubs? They definitely stand out amongst the usual grass front verges and it had always been my dream to have one of those beautiful spaces at the front of my home.
Last month I finally made that dream come true! (With a bit of planning, sweat and hard work!)
I live in the City of Stirling and they provided a $250 rebate to convert my front verge from grass to water-wise plants and mulch. The City of Vincent has an Adopt a Verge program – find out more here: https://www.vincent.wa.gov.au/residents/environment-health/environmental-sustainability/news-events/adopt-a-verge.aspx)
The first step was to have the grass removed by a bobcat. I had initially thought I could dig out the grass myself but after a few hot hours of digging, I soon realised it wasn’t going to be viable!
Once the grass was removed, I collected a heap of old carpets and rugs from my local Buy Nothing Facebook page and lay them over the verge to suffocate any grass roots that might still be there and stop it from growing back. I left it for a month or so.
Next step was to cut holes in the carpet where I wanted to plant my natives.
Then I got some landscape soil delivered to cover the carpet.
It was then time to pick up my 20 free native shrubs from City of Stirling’s plant giveaway day and stick them in. City of Vincent has a native plant sale twice a year where residents can buy natives for $1 each (what a bargain!) or you get 20 free if you’ve signed up to the Adopt a Verge program. https://www.vincent.wa.gov.au/residents/environment-health/environmental-sustainability/news-events/local-native-plant-sale.aspx
Next I covered the whole area with mulch from the free mulch pile at Britannia Reserve.
After putting in a dwarf Meyer lemon tree and a Silver Princess weeping gum, my dream is almost complete! My last steps will be to put some trellis along the brick wall for the vines to climb up, and put in drop line retic to each plant.
If you are dreaming about creating a beautiful native verge yourself, are part of the adopt a verge program in the City of Vincent, but do not have the manpower yourself to put in the hard work, get in touch with Transition Town Vincent on firstname.lastname@example.org. They might be able to help you realise your dream too.
I’m finally living on the verge and it feels (and looks) good.