Brisbane City Council’s Free Native Plants program offers a range of plants to enable the community to cultivate a greener and more sustainable Brisbane. The native species provided through the program will help grow our city’s urban forest and support wildlife.
Find out how to apply for your free native plants.
The Free Native Plants program is open to residents and entities within the Brisbane Local Government area, including:
- residential ratepayers
- residential tenants
- residential body corporates
- registered community groups
- clubs on Council-leased land
- official citizenship ceremonies.
The program does not provide free native plants for:
- small or large-scale events
- promotional programs
- giveaways or on-selling activities
- fundraising activities
- commercial businesses
- government departments.
Plants must be planted on private property and are not intended for planting on Council land or to be used for waterway revegetation.
Requests for plants applied for but not claimed by 30 June, are unable to be honoured in the following financial year.
List of plant species on offer
Council offers a range of native plants that suit Brisbane soils and our subtropical climate. All of these plants provide food and shelter for wildlife. You can choose from a variety of plants including groundcovers, tufting plants, climbers, small and medium shrubs and feature trees with many species being available all year round.
While Council endeavours to supply the variety of plant species on offer throughout the year, due to seasonal availability this is not always possible. If a species is not available at the time of request, it will be substituted with a similar plant type and size available through the Free Native Plants program.
View the plant list on offer or watch the planting video on how to correctly plant your free native plants.
Brisbane residential ratepayers, residential tenants, public housing and Defence Housing residents can claim two free native plants each financial year (July to June).
A residential property includes:
- a stand-alone house (i.e. dwelling house – see Brisbane City Plan)
- a unit in a duplex or dual occupancy
- a unit in a townhouse complex or residential apartment building (excluding hotels or motels).
Owners of unit or townhouse properties must apply through their body corporate.
When claiming free plants on behalf of their property owner, residential tenants renting a free-standing house must provide written approval from the property owner or property manager. The approval must include:
- the owner’s name/s
- full property address
- rate account number
- signed authorisation for the current financial year.
Residential tenants must ensure they remain in compliance with their general tenancy agreement.
If the tenant is renting a unit or townhouse, their property owner or property manager must make the application via the body corporate.
If you are claiming vouchers on behalf of another residential ratepayer (e.g. relative or neighbour), you will need to obtain their written permission.
Rate notices from previous financial years are unable to be used to redeem unclaimed plants.
Council offers two options to residents wanting to claim their free native plants.
- Visit a library (excluding pop-up libraries), mobile library, Council Regional Business Centre or ward office and present a paid rates notice or written authority from the current financial year from the property owner or property manager. Public housing and Defence Housing residents must provide evidence of a recent rental payment.
- You will receive an approved stamped Free Native Plants voucher.
- Visit a participating retail nursery and exchange your voucher for two free native plants.
Residential ratepayers and residential tenants will be required to obtain a Free Native Plants voucher before visiting a participating retail nursery. Due to privacy reasons, residential rates notices are not accepted directly at participating retail nurseries for the Free Native Plants program.
Visit Council’s Downfall Creek Bushland Centre at Chermside West or Karawatha Forest Discovery Centre at Karawatha with your paid rates notice or written authority from the current financial year from the property owner or property manager. You will be able to receive your 2 free native plants from the Council display stand.
Free native plants are available for:
- schools, registered community groups and charitable organisations – up to 50 free plants
- body corporates via a single bulk order – two free plants per unit
- clubs on Council-leased land – up to 20 free plants
- schools celebrating Arbor Day (October) – plants are available from August to October
- official citizenship ceremonies, Council ward offices and registered community groups – one plant for each new citizen.
How to apply
Schools, community groups, clubs on Council-leased land, charities and body corporates can apply online.
As Council is unable to split plant orders, please ensure you request your full allocation in your application.
Schools and community groups need to describe the extent and purpose of their planting project in the application. Applicants are contacted by email once their request has been approved.
Clubs on Council leased land must seek written approval from their Leasing Officer prior to applying for plants.
Free native plants – recently built homes in targeted suburbs
Residents who have purchased a newly built home or moved into their owner-built home within the past 12 months are eligible for four free native plants to assist in the establishment of their gardens.
If your property is listed in one of the targeted suburbs below, please email the Free Native Plants team to request your vouchers.
Eight Mile Plains
Fig Tree Pocket
Check the list of participating nurseries.
Council can also plant trees on your local street as part of the street trees program.