Local soils

Within the Town there are three vegetation complexes:

  • Bassendean 
  • Swan
  • Vasse

The majority of the Town is located within the Bassendean Vegetation Complex.  The high level of species diversity found growing on these sands is of ecological importance for overall biodiversity of the area.

There are a huge range of local WA plants that can be used to create many contemporary garden styles.  Local plants are species that would naturally occur in your neighbourhood and are therefore adapted to the local climate and soil. 

The below provides guidance on identifying your soil and plant species appropriate to your soil type.

Soil type identification chart.(PDF, 1MB)

Central Coastal Plains:

Eastern Coastal Plains:


The Nursery & Garden Industry of Western Australia have developed a booklet called "grow me instead". This brochure provides information to nursery operators and gardeners about plants which are potential weeds in their area and less invasive plants for gardeners to use. In using this guide and consulting with your local garden centre or plant nursery, you can help minimise garden escapes and create a better environmental future for following generations of gardeners. 

Grow Me Instead Brochure(PDF, 5MB)

Home lawns and gardens are a major source of nutrients entering wetlands and the Swan and Canning Rivers. Excess fertiliser used in your garden will eventually find its way into wetlands and the rivers via the stormwater drainage system or through the soil into groundwater.Excessive nutrients in wetland and river systems lead to algal blooms.  These can result in the death of animals and plants which live in the waterways and the possible closure of waterway systems for recreational activity.

You can help improve the health of our waterways and other ecosystems by:

  • Minimising lawn areas - they require a lot of fertiliser and water.
  • Improving your soil with organic matter and soil amendments including spongolite, zeolite, bentonite clay (for sandy soils only) and gypsum (for dispersive clays only) - they grab hold of water and nutrients and keep them in your soil. Click here for more soil improver information.
  • Try fertilising only when symptoms of nutrient deficiency occur eg. yellowing.
  • Using Fertilise Wise endorsed complete fertilisers - they are rigorously tested.
  • Otherwise use a complete lawn fertiliser containing a nitrogen: phosphorus: potassium (N:P:K) ratio of 10:1:6.
  • Look for fertilisers that also contain other nutrients such as sulphur (S), magnesium (Mg), calcium (Ca) and the trace elements copper (Cu), iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), boron (B), zinc (Zn) and molybdenum (Mo) - they feed the soil that feeds your plants.
  • The MAXIMUM individual application rate for the fertiliser should be 25 grams per square metre (half a large handful) for Couch and 12 grams per square metre for Kikuyu and Buffalo.
  • If fertiliser is required, apply in spring or early autumn (September, October, November, March and April) - when plants are growing.
  • Do not fertilise in summer (increases water use) or winter (washes into waterways).
  • Do not over water - it washes the fertiliser into waterways.
  • Grow local plants – they require less fertiliser and water.