Prickly natives for barrier hedges

By Heather Miles

Grevillea rosmarinifolia, good for birds and as a barrier, image Heather Miles

A website reader recently asked for good Australian natives which will keep unwanted visitors at bay.

Here are the suggestions for prickly shrubs and hedging plants from our panel of experts:

  • Grevillea rosmarinifolia cultivars such as’Scarlet Sprite’ (pictured below)
  • Grevillea Winparra cultivars eg ‘Winparra Gem’ – dense, tough, fast growing, up to 2m
  • Hakea sericea – prickly and copes with sand, prune to keep to 1m
  • Graptophyllum ilicifolium – rainforest type look with dark green “holly-like” leaves, but very tough and copes with dry, also lipstick pink flowers, prune to keep to 1m
  • Bursaria spinosa, Blackthorn – this flowers in autumn which offers an advantage to wildlife by providing sustenance ahead of the approaching winter.
  • Acacia ulicifolia, Prickly Moses or heath wattle. There are also a number of small wattles that have spiky foliage, but remember that these species are fast growing and may be short lived – dense, tough and copes with sand, but not prickly

Anything marketed as attracting small birds would work as usually dense and prickly for habitat.