The best low maintenance plants for your landscape design

Andrew Little

August 24, 2021

Low Maintenance Design

Why are my plants withering and dying?

All the fertiliser and water in the world will not help a gardenia that’s been planted beneath a large tree, in fact a common cause of plant death occurs when a gardener panics in seeing their plant in distress and then with good intentions, overwaters and over fertilises the already stressed plant.  If you’ve been guilty of this, don’t worry I’m going to let you into my secrets on how to keep your plants green and healthy.

Plant selections for every micro environment are crucial when designing and establishing a low maintenance garden.  Making the right plant choices for your landscape will allow you to spend more time with your family, doing things you love or just spending a day kicking back in your PJ’s recharging the batteries

Native Garden

How to choose low maintenance plants for your garden

When choosing plants for your garden you want to consider positioning, watering requirements and food. When it comes to positioning, you may have the perfect plant in mind to go in a shady spot, but if that plant thrives in direct sunlight, it’s game over before you’ve even started. 

Selecting the right plant for the position in your garden is about more than how it looks today. You need to consider how the garden around that plant will grow and change in the coming years. Now, if this all sounds like a bit too much for your low maintenance gardening needs, we agree! It can get overwhelming, which is why we’re sharing the top 3 low maintenance plants to choose, that don’t need a degree to position, water and feed. 

Succulents and Cacti 

Succulents are always a great choice for a low maintenance design.  Succulents survive well in harsh conditions and can adapt to low watering requirements.  This is because their leaves tend to store large amounts of water, providing an internal reservoir of slow release irrigation.  There are many options when it comes to succulents and the key to great design is to really work with their colour arrangements.

  • Senecio Repens (chalk sticks) –  great for low lying ground cover
  • Cotelydon Orbiculata (pigs ears) – this light grey succulent is like silver waves 
  • Aloe ‘mighty sunset’ – beautiful, compact aloe with vibrant orange flower
  • Crassula ‘campfire’ – low growing ground cover, perfect for rockeries
  • Kalanchoe ‘flapjacks’ – gorgeous sculptured plant with interesting green and red tones
Low Maintenance Plant


Natives are plants that originated from the local environment where you live.  Caring for native plants is way easier than for ornamentals like roses, azaleas, and camelia’s.  After thousands of years acclimatizing and adapting to local conditions, your native plants are much hardier and require less watering, less fertilisation and less weeding.  They actually have developed a natural defence to local weed species, which means they do the weeding for you! 

  • Grevillea ‘bronze rambler’ – Dense evergreen Ground cover that spreads really well
  • Westringia fruticosa – commonly called rosemary due to its similarity in growth habit
  • Callistemon – Classic aussie bottlebrush with bright red splashes of colour
Low Maintenance Native Plant

Ground covering plants 

A great low maintenance choice, once fully developed with a full coverage these hardy plants will naturally prevent weeds from growing. They cover the soil with such density that they block the sunlight from weeds attempting to grow beneath them.  Star jasmine and Dichondra repens are beautiful and effective choices for landscaping design.  To really juice it up choose a native ground covering plant such as Myoporum Parvifolium or Grevillea ‘bronze rambler’.

Low Maintenance Plant

Whether you are time poor or trying to keep to a gardening budget, there are plenty of ways you can create a beautiful low maintenance garden.  The many hardy and wonderful plant options will ensure you can have the freedom to choose how you spend your weekends.

If you need help to transform your ‘néedy’ plants into a low maintenance garden, then we can do the hard yards for you. We’re here to help with planting, pruning, and garden clean-up services, get in touch here.