In an attempt to make Shellharbour City a greener place, Shellharbour City Council's nursery has opened its gates to the general public.
The nursery has sold plants at wholesale prices for the past two decades, but now the general public can purchase as many or as few plants as they like and at the same time take the opportunity to ask questions of specialist staff.
Shellharbour council's parks superintendent, Scott Rowe, said opening the nursery to the public was as much about community education as it was running a business.
"It gives us an opportunity to give our goals more exposure," Mr Rowe said.
Those goals include encouraging the "greening of the city" and promoting Shellharbour's green corridor project - which runs from Albion Park to Blackbutt Forest.
"It is important that we identify and grow native species of plants for many of our planting programs to support the wildlife inhabitants of our area," Mr Rowe said.
Plants have been cultivated at the Oak Flats Industrial Road site for more than 30 years.
The nursery was initially established to supply plants for council works including parks, gardens and streetscape projects.
About 20 years ago the nursery began selling plants to landscapers, developers and the public at wholesale prices for a minimum of 50 plants.
Mr Rowe said in the past five years the nursery's focus had been on propagating plants native to the Shellharbour area, which are used in Landcare and Bushcare works.
Each year the nursery donates 1700 plants to schools and community groups and grows plants for bush regeneration projects.
Mr Rowe said plants were available for all garden types and styles including palms and exotic plants that range in size from tubes to 300-millimetre pots.
Located at 132 Industrial Road, Oak Flats, the nursery is open weekdays between 7.30am to 3.45pm. There are plans to open on selected weekends.