Instead of the standard Father’s Day gifts like aftershave or his drink of choice, why not give him a gift that will be a long-lasting memory of the day. A plant is a living present that’s forever changing and is sure to brighten his home or garden for years to come.
Citrus trees are a plant with something for every type of dad. The gardener will love their shiny green leaves, fragrant flowers and the fact that they are one of the easiest fruit trees to grow. The thirsty dad can savour a fresh orange juice in the morning or a squeeze of lime to add some zing to a soft drink on a hot day. The foodie will relish the fresh juice from a lemon or lime or the zest from their skin to add to his cooking.
The wide range of foliage shapes and striking colours make succulents a perfect living gift. Choose one variety to catch the eye when sprinkled around the garden or go for maximum impact with a wide selection of different types that can be mass planted in a sunny corner. Succulents grow well in pots too, so can be used to brighten up a sunny balcony or courtyard. Decorating a terracotta pot with paint will make the gift even more personal.
Help him take his barbecue cooking to the next level with a potted herb garden placed right next to his favourite appliance. Some standards are rosemary and thyme for flavouring lamb and steak; coriander and fennel for fish and chicken; and don’t forget the salad with parsley and chives. When it comes to containers to grow them in, you can choose a simple trough, a selection of different pots or go for something elaborate with a vertical herb garden.
A decorative plant your dad can put on display is a perfect gift, and they don’t get much better than a bonsai. This Japanese art form uses pruning and cultivation techniques to produce small trees that mimic the look of a much larger tree. Finished trees come in gorgeous glazed pots or you can purchase a starter plant so he can select his own pot then get zen and practice this amazing skill.
Bring in the wildlife
How about a gift that will not only brighten up the garden but also bring it to life by attracting a wide array of Australian wildlife? Small trees or shrubs like the Lilly Pillies can attract smaller birds such as the wren, which are often scared off by more aggressive birds when only large trees are present. Nectar-producing natives such as banksias and Grevilleas attract colourful insects such as butterflies and bees as well as many birds.