Gardens for wildlife program

Gardens for wildlife is a free program that shows residents how to create a garden that attracts wildlife and improves its habitat.

The program is a partnership between Cardinia Shire Council, Landcare networks, ‘Friends’ groups and local volunteers.

If you live in these townships you can register for a gardens-for-wildlife assessment by a trained volunteer from a local Landcare network or ‘Friends’ group:

  • Avonsleigh
  • Bayles
  • Beaconsfield
  • Bunyip
  • Caldermeade
  • Catani
  • Clematis
  • Cockatoo
  • Cora Lynn
  • Dewhurst
  • Emerald
  • Garfield
  • Gembrook
  • Guys Hill
  • Heath Hill
  • Iona
  • Lang Lang
  • Menzies Creek
  • Modella
  • Monomeith
  • Nar Nar Goon North
  • Nyora
  • Officer
  • Pakenham Upper
  • Upper Beaconsfield
  • Vervale
  • Yannathan

If you don’t live in these areas, you can still create a ‘garden for wildlife’ using our fact sheets

Thank you to Knox City Council for their assistance in developing this program. 

If you live in one of the townships listed above, you can register your interest online. We will email you an introduction pack, then a volunteer will contact you to arrange your free site assessment.

You will get great advice to help you create your wildlife-friendly garden, such as:

  • suggestions on what to plant in your garden
  • water saving tips
  • garden design ideas
  • weed control tips.

Once you have had your assessment you will receive:

  • a written garden assessment reports
  • a letterbox plaque – display this proudly to encourage your neighbours to join the program, so you can join together to create corridors of wildlife-friendly gardens! 
  • a local plant guide
  • a weed control guide
  • weed dabber bottle.

Register your interest now

Gardens for Wildlife logo



To attract as much wildlife as possible, put as much of the following as you can in your garden:

  • tall native tree/s
  • a patch of natural mulch
  • a clump of thick shrubs
  • plants with nectar
  • a cat-safe bird bath
  • a frog-friendly pond
  • a warm, sheltered corner
  • butterfly-attracting plants
  • get rid of weeds
  • nest boxes

Down to earth e-newsletter

When you register your interest you can choose to join the mailing list for our Down to earth bi-monthly e-newsletter. The e-newsletter provides local environmental news, plus tips and tricks to improve your wildlife garden.

Indigenous plant guide

Indigenous plants are ones that grow naturally in the area and so need less water, less fertiliser and less maintenance.

Our indigenous plant guide will help you to select plants that will grow best where you live because they suit local rainfall and soil types and provide habitat for native animals.

For every square metre of irrigated lawn you replace with a mulched bed of indigenous plants you save 400 litres of water per year!

Local indigenous nurseries list

Indigenous plants are not commonly available at your local nursery or hardware store.

View our list of indigenous plant nurseries – these are staffed by volunteers who can help you choose the best plants for your garden.

Saving the Southern Brown Bandicoot

If you live in Bayles, Bunyip, Cora Lynn, Garfield, Heath Hill, Iona, Lang Lang, Maryknoll, Monomeith, Koo Wee Rup, Tynong or Yannathan, find out how you can help save our endangered Southern Brown Bandicoot