The Nursery and Garden Industry has an increased awareness of its responsibility in reducing the impact of invasive plants. The establishment of the national Grow Me Instead website provides information on invasive plants and their non-invasive alternatives for all Australian states and territories. The main aim of Grow Me Instead is to facilitate cultural change amongst the industry and gardening public. The GMI guides and this website provide an excellent starting point by identifying a range of plants that are common in urban landscapes yet considered invasive. By providing a number of superior alternative plants we encourage people to think before selecting plants and to choose the non-invasive option.
Industry members are also encouraged to play their part in promoting the key messages of Grow Me Instead. Production nurseries can assist by reviewing their production lists, ensuring that only non-invasive species are grown. It would be expected there may be an increased demand for the superior non-invasive selections, so an increase in production of those species might be an option. Retail businesses are the 'shop-front' for Grow Me Instead and it is important that they are well informed in all aspects of the GMI program. Retailers can assist by ensuring employees are well versed in identification of the invasive species listed as well as being able to promote the best performing non-invasive alternatives to suit local conditions.
When selecting plants, there is always a non-invasive option. Let’s embrace this fantastic opportunity to do the right thing by the environment and only grow and promote non-invasive plants.