SPRING should be in the air, but in actual fact, it is just around the corner for natives, and for the Australian Plants Society South Gippsland group, that’s a wonderful coincidence.
The group will host its annual Native Flower Show on October 20 and 21 at the Leongatha Recreation Reserve.
The Native Flower Show features plants grown locally arranged in area, height, type and flowers.
It ranges from dwarf plants, to bush tucker, through to water plants.
Gardeners across the region have been busily cataloguing their Australian plants and flowers, preparing them for the show.
Leongatha’s Kerry Prichard was one member of the South Gippsland group who was excitedly pottering around the garden last week.
His garden, like all true green-thumbs, has been a work in progress since he retired from his garden maintenance business.
He is determined to show Australian natives at their best and has already committed to providing cuttings from his native hedge, grevilleas, everlasting daisies, waratahs, kangaroo paw, boronias and thriving Xanthaorrhea (Black Boys).
“Grevilleas will feature highly in this year’s show,” he said walking around his garden taking notes. “People should keep in mind it’s been a cold, wet winter, but I’m sure between us [members of the South Gippsland Australian Plants Society], we’ll have some good specimens,” Mr Prichard said.
“We can’t feature myrtaceae this year because of the Myrtle Rust outbreak – best to keep preventing its spread.
“So that means there won’t be melaleucas, lilly pillies, ti-trees and callistemon.
“But it will still be a fantastic show, because it gives us a chance to focus on other plants instead.
“There will be lots of kangaroo paws, boronias, grevilleas, hakeas, banksias, emu bushes, prostathera (mint bushes) and waratahs.
“By taking myrtaceae out, it gives us a chance to promote some other exciting gena that wouldn’t normally feature.”
The Native Flower Show will be held at the Leongatha Recreation Reserve from 10am to 4pm and includes a book and plant sale.
Entry is $3 per adult and assists the South Gippsland group hold the event.

Make a day of it with art show
ON DURING the same weekend is the Leongatha Rotary Art and Photography Show at Leongatha Memorial Hall.
The biggest art show in town opens with a special judging, wine and cheese night on Friday, October 19.
The show will be open Friday from 1pm to 5pm and then after judging from 8pm, Saturday 10am to 7.30pm and Sunday 10am to 3pm.
Many of the pieces are for sale and feature artists and work from around the region and Victoria.