Kid and pet friendly planting

One of the biggest educational trends experienced in recent years is incorporating nature play. Add to that, the necessary restrictions on our daily lives over the last 18 months to prevent the spread of COVID, and it has thrown into light the significance that natural elements have on maintaining our health and wellbeing.

Children and pets are no different – they thrive in experiencing the world around them and this includes plants. Kids, cats and dogs alike love to touch differently textured leaves and bark. They enjoy smelling flowers and crawling through the ‘jungle-like’ setting of shrubs and trees.

Encourage their learning and development in whatever space is available, whether it be indoors, within a balcony or courtyard, or amongst a wide-open garden. Use plants that are safe for inquisitive little hands and paws, some of which also have the added benefit of attracting pollinators such as birds and bees.

One of the easiest ways to begin and incorporate plants into their environment is by setting up a kitchen windowsill garden. Use sprouts, microgreens, Dactylis glomerata (Pet Grass) and some herbs such as Basil, Rosemary, Sage and Thyme.

Adiantum fragrans (Maidenhair Fern)

Its delicate and compact growth makes this the perfect houseplant for small spaces whilst looking just as beautiful in courtyards.

Aloe Vera

An easy plant to grow and a very practical one, as the juice from its thick leaves can be applied to minor burns and skin irritations. Ideal for introducing kids to the soothing properties of some plants.

Aspidistra elatior (Cast Iron Plant)

Ideal as a houseplant, it will also thrive outside in pots and shaded areas. Hardy and very low maintenance, its attractive glossy foliage will suit most indoor décor.

Beaucarnea recurvata (Pony Tail Palm)

A unique looking plant to spark imaginations with its bulbous base and long, thin grass-like leaves. Relatively slow growing but will suit both indoor and outdoor spaces alike.

Chamaedorea Elegans (Parlor palm)

A great way to incorporate a small tree indoors, this low maintenance houseplant is also a good starting point for beginner plant owners.

Chlorophytum comosum Picturatum (Spider Plant)

One of the easiest plants to grow and maintain, it works well in backyard gardens, hanging baskets and pots. An excellent teaching opportunity, as baby spider plants can be potted up that the mother plant produces.

Dypsis lutescens (Golden Cane Palm)

A decorative and very hardy tropical palm with golden coloured trunks, that will suit either outdoor or indoor spaces. Looks particularly fantastic around pools and patios.

Giant Bromeliad such as Alcantarea Imperialis Rubra and Alcantarea Silver Plum

Its’ big, bold form and thick leaves echo the jungles of faraway lands; adding a tropical vibe to courtyard and patio spaces. Low maintenance and completely safe for pets. 

Hypoestes phyllostachya Confetti Mix (Polka Dot Plant)

With foliage in pink, red and white, this is a great plant to add a splash of pattern and color to miniature gardens, terrariums and mixed containers.

Musa William Cavendish (Carnarvon Banana)

The big, bright leaves create a lovely shady spot, and pets and kids alike will enjoy playing hide and seek behind the thick trunk.

Pilea libanensis Silver Sprinkles

A popular, low maintenance houseplant with small, circular foliage. Very much ‘on trend’, easy to care for and sure to spark imagination.

Kid and pet friendly planting

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Go green with living walls

Many people ask what are living walls?

Also known as ‘green walls’, ‘eco walls’ or ‘vertical gardens’, they are different to ‘green facades’, whereby the greenlife is trained to cover a wall for aesthetic purposes.

Green facades are primarily achieved either indirectly, by planting groundcovers in planter boxes and letting them trail down a wall, or directly, by affixing a structure such as a trellis to the wall and training plants to grow up it. Green facades can also be created by greenlife attaching itself to the wall (as in the case of a vine).

Instead, living walls see the greenlife planted directly into a structure that has been built either into or onto the wall, where they will receive their required nutrients from the soil and water that fills it. Learn more about green walls with Horticulture Innovation Australia Ltd

No longer just of interest to architectural companies in the race for the latest design awards, living walls are also gaining considerable attention from other businesses seeking to improve their ecological credentials, building aesthetics or employee benefits. This last is in reference to biophilic design, the concept that employees are more productive and happier when they have access to nature.

Both living walls and green facades are considered components of overall green infrastructure and important in reducing our carbon footprint. They are credited with providing benefits to urban environments, including attracting wildlife, improving air quality and establishing a microclimate, reducing energy costs (by reflecting solar heat in summer and providing insulation in winter), and helping to dampen noise. Either living walls or green facades in urban environments can also help to reduce the city’s heat island effect.

Living walls have both indoor and outdoor applications, and with the right plants can be created in a wide variety of conditions, from full to part sun or shade.

Living walls are also scalable, from forming the central focus in a grand landscape design as living art to being relatively easy to establish in a small courtyard or alfresco space; with many retailers now selling affordable, modular kits which homeowners can easily assemble themselves.

Before embarking on the creation of a stunning living wall, it is important to consider more than just the site’s volume of sunlight and orientation. The existing wall or supports and their load capacity will determine the size of your living wall, as well as the options for irrigation and drainage.

Consider the level of maintenance required for your living wall, and how much upkeep the plants will need. Your plants will likely have dormant periods. It is also vital to waterproof the space for longevity of the project.

Living walls are typically only visual additions, however there is a rise in people taking advantage of living walls offering a larger number of plants in a smaller space by establishing them using edible vegetation. Thus, creating a dual purpose and expanding the biodiversity in the space.

Explore our online plant library to select the right plants for your living wall project. You are limited only by your imagination and a plant’s growing conditions!

Go green with living walls

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Understanding plant breeder's rights

Ever seen a plant name followed by (PVR) or (PBR), and wondered what this meant?

Plant Breeder's Rights (or PBR) [formerly known as Plant Variety Rights (or PVR) in Australia] gives plant breeders the ownership of a newly-bred plant variety for a specific period of time. This ensures the breeder has exclusive rights to produce or reproduce that plant’s material. It also prohibits others from dividing or propagating the plant for resale or commercial gain, which is illegal. 

PBRs are typically used to protect new varieties of plants that are distinct, uniform and stable, however PBR legislation also covers essentially derived varieties and farm saved seed. Breeders are encouraged to invest in bringing new plant varieties to the market, as a PBR offers protection for the breeder to recoup a return on that investment. Application, certificate and renewal fees apply to hold a PBR.

Without a PBR, plant names are also sometimes intended for protection. This is represented by either a ™ (meaning Trademark) or an ® (meaning Registered Trademark) following the name.

A trademark can be used by any person or business to indicate that particular plant name is meant to serve as an identifier for the source of that plant. Further, a registered trademark indicates that the trademark has been officially recorded for that plant.

To be registered, a trademark application must meet the legislative requirements. This process begins by submitting the application to – which is then reviewed by – the Australian Government’s agency for Intellectual Property. If approved, it will be visible in the Australian Official Journal of Trade Marks for two months, during which time third parties may oppose the intended registration. If it is unopposed, the trademark is registered. The length of the registration process can depend on the variety being grown. Similarly, the length of protection can also differ for some species.

Different combinations of IP rights can be used to add value to a single plant variety. For example, trademarks are most commonly used in conjunction with PBRs, such as in the case of Westringia 'WES03' Blue Gem™ or Lomandra 'SIR5' Wingarra™.

Explore our online plant library to discover an extensive range of exclusive PBR plants.

Understanding plant breeder's rights

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Understanding Tubestock

Tubestock

As a term used widely by the industry, tubestock refers to plants grown in smaller nursery containers or 'cells' (typically between 40-70mm in size) to encourage a fully established root system prior to being planted out. 

Tubestock is both a cost and time effective way of obtaining native plants en masse that are suitable for planting straight into the field, providing instant value to your project.

Benara Nurseries’ cells are custom-made with internal ribbing to train the root growth in a downward motion, preventing spiraling and encouraging an elongated and deeper root structure. Our tubestock is already sun hardened and air pruned, providing a higher quality stock with a greater survival rate. All of our stock are grown on benches to allow air flow and good hygiene, with the plants also receiving 6 to 8 months slow-release fertilizer, providing excellent nutrition for their establishment in revegetation projects.

Benara Nurseries are accredited by the Nursery Industry Accreditation Scheme Australia (NIASA) in both Greenlife Market and Nusery, as well as EcoHort cerified. These independently-audited schemes, along with our regular integrated pest and disease management, ensure that Benara Nurseries stock maintains the highest industry standards and uses best growing practices. We mass produce reeds and sedges, and hand produce the more delicate species. Our team are also continually trialling new and recalcitrant species.

Revegetation

At Benara Nurseries, our dedicated native revegetation department is passionate about rebuilding the natural habitat. Our team of expert horticulturalists have the experience and knowledge to propagate and produce the highest quality native tubestock for revegetation and landscaping projects.

We have the capabilities to grow exceptionally high volumes of tubestock varieties. We can produce smaller, provenance-specific revegetation stock through to large-scale volume growing for commercial rehabilitation contracts.

The majority of our revegetation stock is grown from seed for greater genetic diversity, and our species list is wide ranging, with plants suitable for a number of local environments covering metro and regional Western Australian conditions.

Orders

Benara Nurseries' tubestock is provided in narrow 50mm W x 50mm x D 100mm H cells. All of our tubestock is then available in either a single rack (of 20 cells) or as 64 and 104 cell trays, with all orders placed in multiples of tray sizes. 

As part of Benara Nurseries' sustainability practices, all trays are salvaged, steam sterilized and reused in our production.

Speak to our Sales staff for more information or to place an order on 08 9561 9000 or benara@benara.com.au

Understanding Tubestock

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Start your greenlife career with us. We are now hiring.

A career in the greenlife industry means you will meaningfully contribute to creating liveable cities, healthy environments and protecting the future of food security in Australia.

Benara Nurseries are currently seeking part time nursery team members to join us at our wholesale production nursery Carabooda location.

We are looking for self-motivated hands on people who have a positive attitude, who are fit and reliable. We have one area with positions vacant;

Maintenance crew – full and part time

  • 7am till 3:30pm
  • Also can suit parents for part time roles with school kids
  • Maintaining our nursery stock, weeding, staking, pruning
  • Tractor operation for some personal

These roles have the opportunity for future job progression in the horticultural industry, and for enthusiastic and motivated team members future opportunities to join our apprenticeship program. A career path in Horticulture is only limited by your interests and motivation, there are many learning pathways that be can taken.

Check out this industry overview here.

Successful applicants will also require a pair of steel capped safety boots. All other PPE (personal protective equipment) is provided.

Please note we are located in Carabooda, there is no public transport to our site.

For more information or to apply, please email a resume (word doc or PDF format preferable) to jobs@benara.com.au

Start your greenlife career with us. We are now hiring.

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How Long Does It Take To Grow Our Trees?

As part of our quality control processes and as we grow from one pot size to another to ensure proper root development and plant growth each variety of plant is propagated at a specific time of year. Ordering your stock at the right time will ensure we can then program growing times to have the best possible specimens at the time of sale. Not allowing enough time or having trees growing for too long can impact their health.

Lead Times

Average time it takes to get stock to the right size

• Tubestock, 13cm, 14cm grow pots = 6 months – 1 year
• 17cm, 5lt, 8lt grow pots = 1 - 1.5 years
• 12lt, 30lt, 90lt grow pots = 2 - 3 years
• 200lt grow pots/bags = 4 years+

Image growth timeline is intended as a guide only. Contact us to disscuss your needs.

 

What to consider for ordering?

Plants take time to grow. When it comes to ordering advanced stock we strive to have a range of plant sizes available. In order to ensure we have the right size for your project needs there are some specific times of the year where it is best to place you order to help us meet your requirements.

How Long Does It Take To Grow Our Trees?

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