The West

Water chief encourages native plants
Water chief encourages native plants

Busselton households are encouraged to consider planting native gardens to reduce water usage, despite figures revealing the area’s water usage is decreasing.

Busselton Water figures showed water consumption had decreased 11.6 per cent from 131.7kl per person in 2004-05 to 116.3kl per person in 2011-12.

However, the figures also showed residential customers were using 44 per cent of their water supplies outside the home, primarily on gardens.

Busselton Water acting chief executive Julie Rawlings said planting gardens with low water requirement native plants “makes good sense”.

“Many native planets that are available require little or no water following an initial establishment period,” she said.

Total Horticultural Services owner Graeme Sly said about 60 per cent of his clients were installing native gardens.

“If used correctly, they can save anywhere between 10 to 80 per cent water usage,” he said.

However, Mr Sly said several factors had to be taken into consideration to increase water efficiency, including using native plants that were local to the area, the type of soil used and mulching.

Geographe Community Landcare Nursery co-ordinator Ann Bentley believed residents were becoming more aware of native plants.

“We do a lot of education, and many people realise there is a lot they don’t know about native plants,” she said.

“There is actually a wide variety of native plants, and we have about 250 species at the nursery.” G

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