Fertilising Aussie natives – why some are phosphorus-sensitive?
When it comes to feeding Australian plants avoid using high phosphorous formulations on the Proteaceae family. This includes Grevilleas, Hakeas, Banksias and Telopea species as they have developed specialised roots to draw phosphorous out of low phosphorus soils.
When the incorrect formulation is used, these roots are burnt, and plants will die quickly. These roots are identified by a mass of fine fibres just under the soil surface and if you didn’t know any different, you’d think the plant had a disease.
When planting new plants from the Proteaceae family avoid teasing the proteoid roots apart as it will visibly stress the plants. Apply a controlled release fertiliser suitable for natives such as PowerFeed Controlled Release Plant Food All Purpose including Natives twice a year and Australian plants are guaranteed to thrive.