Glorious Summer Colour
It was the love of the West Australian Red Flowering Gum that led to the development of grafted gums in Australia.
Hailing from Queensland, nurseryman Stan Henry knew only too well the frustrations of trying to grow temperate plants in a tropical climate. Absolutely smitten with the Red Flowering Gum he decided to give grafting a go. Many people told him you couldn’t do it, luckily for us gardeners and in true Aussie spirit he ignored the advice and went ahead anyway.
Fast forward a few decades and we are spoilt for choice with the varieties of grafted gums available to buy. Choosing which colour to have in the garden is the difficult part, growing them is easy. We have a collection of our own varieties only available in WA, selected for their outstanding flowering. You could say they are born and bred in WA, for WA conditions.
Grafted gums have everything going for them, spectacular summer flowering, a small compact shape, are suited to Western Australia’s climate and are waterwise. It’s no wonder our team here at Nativ love them! Selecting a grafted variety takes the guess work out of gardening as the colour, tree size and form is guaranteed – easy for even the most novice gardener. The growth that comes from a strong root stock will ensure your trees with thrive in a variety of soil conditions.
These trees are sold as advanced plants, ensuring a strong healthy trunk and shape, making them ideal for a large terracotta pot or extra-large bowl or to plant straight into the ground.
Follow these summer planting tips for guaranteed success:
- Before planting submerge the pot in wetting agent solution for about 15 minutes and then let drain. This will ensure the water soaks the complete root system. Do this regardless whether you are planting in a pot or the ground.
- If planting in the ground dig a hole twice the width and depth of the pot and replace about ¼ of the soil with native planting mix or compost suitable for native plants. Sprinkle supplied controlled release fertiliser for natives (at recommended rates) and mix thoroughly.
- Water the hole thoroughly with a wetting agent solution and ensure the water soaks in. If you haven’t already realised WA soils become water repellent quickly and this is your saviour.
- Place the plant in the hole, avoiding too much root disturbance and water in well. Creating a shallow dish at this time of the year will ensure the water pools around the roots.
- Lastly apply a chunky coarse mulch around the root system and beyond. You want to keep the root system cool and retain as much water in the soil as possible through out the warmer months.
- If planting in a pot – select a pot large enough for the tree to develop a good size and shape. The larger the pot the cooler the root system will stay as there is more soil around the roots. Clay pot is preferred over plastic. Avoid self-watering pots for grafted gums and plant in premium potting mix suitable for Australian plants. Apply controlled release fertiliser to the surface about 4 weeks after planting.
Choose Your Colour Inspiration
Orange is the ‘POP’ colour of this year. Team it with a charcoal glazed pot (if planting in a pot) or plant with sage green foliage, white or dark grey foliaged plants. We have chosen three of our favourite orange shades to make it easier for you. Our team has tested these oranges in their own gardens and hands down, win on all levels.
Blood Orange (Corymbia ficifolia GRAFTED Blood Orange)
Produces deep, orange-coloured flowers throughout summer on a compact tree. Perfect for coastal conditions and grows to 3m high x 2m wide – ideal for narrow positions or for growing in a pot.
Baby Orange (Corymbia ficifolia GRAFTED Baby Orange)
If pale orange is more your colour, then this is your variety. Gorgeous compact tree growing to 3m x 3m tall. Plant in a turquoise or sage green pot to make it ‘Pop’ even more in summer. Also suited to coastal conditions.
Phils Orange (Corymbia ficifolia GRAFTED Phils Orange)
Covered in bright orange flowers throughout the warmer months and a larger grower reaching heights of 5m x 4m wide. Thrives in a wide range of soil types.
If red is more your style our favourite varieties are–
Little Red (Corymbia ficifolia GRAFTED Little Red)
The brightest red you’ll get. This variety isn’t shy of flowering and guaranteed your tree will be admired by all who see it. A taller grower its perfect for a specimen tree to create shade in the garden.
Magenta (Corymbia ficifolia GRAFTED Magenta)
The name says it all – masses of bright magenta-coloured flowers throughout summer. Flowering in sandy or heavy soils, on the coast or in the hills this tree delivers pure joy wherever it is planted.
For those who shy away from bright colours in the garden there is an option –
Summer Beauty (Corymbia hybrid GRAFTED Summer Beauty)
Produces large pale, pink-coloured flowers through the warmer months. While the colour is delicate the tree isn’t. Coping with the harshest conditions you can throw at it once established, the pale pink flowers will look stunning in any garden style. Creating high canopy shade at 6m x 4m wide its ideal to use as a shade tree.