Whether we have a window box or a smallholding, we can all contribute to the protection of local species. Add indigenous plants whenever you can – and try to get your neighbours and neighbour’s neighbours to do the same.
What to plant now
Three native species to dig right now…
Image courtesy seedsforafrica.co.za
Edging Lobelia, Garden Lobelia or Trailing Lobelia is a very popular border, basket and filler plant – grow year round in all climates – it’s known for its attractive displays of tiny mauve, pink, blue, violet and white flowers.
Image courtesy theflowerexpert.com
Begonias are frequently showy and large, white, pink, scarlet or yellow in colour and most will grow and flower year-round. Begonias enjoy warm temperatures, do well as house plants in winter in colder places, and prefer bright shade. Easily grown from cuttings and slips, there are numerous hybrids and variations. Because of the great numbers of interesting forms, begonias appeal strongly to collectors.
Image courtesy plantzafrica.com
An attractive, evergreen succulent shrub, hedge, or small tree with small round succulent leaves and red stems, the porkbush (Portulacaria afra) requires very little water and has small star-shaped pink flowers which are borne en masse from late winter to spring. They are a rich source of nectar for many insects, which in-turn attracts insectivorous birds. Porkbush is also a great soil binder (for preventing soil erosion) and effective in carbon sequestration (binding atmospheric carbon which is responsible for climate change).
Take a crack
Five ways to use egg shells in your garden from premeditatedleftovers.com
Eggshells are chock full of calcium, and so they are the perfect product to use on your garden plants. While most people toss their eggshells away, savvy gardeners know that they are their best friend and use them in a variety of ways. Take a look below at five ways to use egg shells in your garden that are both frugal and simple. You will never look at eggshells the same way again.
Five ways to use eggshells in your garden
Nine tips for growing happy potted herbs
Growing herbs in pots is amazingly easy and productive. Most herbs do exceptionally well in pots if you get a few basics right.
Working with the right tools is essential to a gorgeous outdoor space, right? So why not stock up on all the gardening tools you could ever want or need at Mica? Getting your hands dirty in the garden will seem like the easiest task in the world, plus, you’ll get to put those green fingers of yours to the test. Just be sure to find out if the Mica near you stocks the tools you need. Happy gardening! Details: www.mica.co.za
Free up your space with these three hacks
A basic trellis and a few hanging planters (how pretty are the silver buckets?!) turn a basic exterior wall into an elegant vertical garden and the perfect backdrop for outdoor entertaining!
Tin can alley
Create a privacy barrier between you and your up-close-and-personal neighbours with this palette and coffee can garden. It provides fresh greens and serves as an artful property divider in one!
A beautiful mason jar herb garden is easy to make and can be hung up anywhere there’s sun, inside or outside the home.
Images and ideas via popsugar.com
Keep the ‘do it yourself’ spirit going with a trip to your nearest Builders Warehouse. Not only do they have the tools you’ll need to get creative, but also the tricks! You can find ideas and inspiration to spruce up your home or office (or both!) as well as your garden – think outdoor lighting tips, self-watering garden ideas and great ways to upgrade your garden and outdoor area. Once you’re done, all that’s left to do is to show off your refurb with a fab al fresco luncheon … yes please! Details: www.builders.co.za
Superbalist is one of our favourite online stores. Sometimes it’s our hunting ground for home décor and a few new wardrobe essentials. But mostly, we love all the innovative treasures you’d be hard pressed to find anywhere else, like this concrete desktop planter to bring some life to your workspace. R499. Details: www.superbalist.com
Have these hacks inspired you? We’re certainly itching to try them! Better yet, when it comes to filling up these planters, we know exactly where to go to get the freshest and most beautiful flowers … Dunkeld Fruit and Flowers! Walking into that store is a dream … just picture rows and rows of gorgeous, colourful bouquets of everything from chrysanthemums to carnations. We love it! Details: 011-341-0101
Water-wise gardening – how about…
Image courtesy seedratings.com
A refreshing, cooling herb for food flavouring, good digestion, relieving anxiety and fatigue, as well as acting as a natural insecticide. Mint likes moist, rich soil and partial shade and there are many types to choose from. Liquorice mint produces spikes of powder blue flowers, irresistible to butterflies. It is a hardy and drought-tolerant feature plant that can hold its own in any mixed border. www.lifeisagarden.co.za