False Bay garden in March twentyTutu

  

by Diana Studer

- gardening for biodiversity

 in Cape Town, South Africa

 

As the year turns to autumn, cooler, shorter days we have fresh flowers. Gold sparkles on scarlet Nerine sarniensis. One pot blooming already, three more with buds. They are all bursting - I need to plant out some bulbs and only repot a few.

 

Nerine sarniensis
Nerine sarniensis

For Through the Garden Gate. With Sarah in Dorset. Sky blue Plumbago against a sparkling blue sky. With a soft yellow and blue Mandela's Gold Strelitzia.

 

Plumbago and Mandela's Gold
Plumbago and Mandela's Gold

Moved the bonsais back to their cool home displayed on the table (much too hot and sunny there in summer). Cool and shady against the east-facing house wall in summer. Pruned the branch facing forward for the illusion of distant perspective.

 

Two bonsais
Two bonsais

Two gardening styles. I found a useful Australian TV garden programme (Southern hemisphere so the seasons are right, not too long, with a transcript) - How to prune your olive tree. The Ungardener cuts off, along his chosen line. That end looks dead, but isn't, we'll have to keep removing actual dead wood. I cut out leaving a green surface, but a bit lighter and further back. Metalasia muricata will loll in peace while those flowers smell so deliciously of honey.

 

Tapestry hedge on our verge
Tapestry hedge on our verge

Wild olive is just outside our bay window, where I would love to see a gnarled and twisted trunk. The tree is ... about 10 years old. Clearing around the succulents and bulbs which are being swamped by Pelargonium and Euphorbia on one side, and Plumbago and Tecomaria on the other. Another slice off Brachylaena discolor.

 

Wild olive
Wild olive

Searsia crenata has lost a chunk to dieback leaving a space in the centre of this raised bed. Elbowing for space around that gap are Searsia leptodictya and Dovyalis caffra. Against the boundary wall Kiggelaria africana. Towards the lemon tree a humungous (the next pruning project!) Searsia crenata, with Indigofera jucunda and Diospyros whyteana.

 

Searsia crenata left a gap
Searsia crenata left a gap


Zöe was fascinated by this fat stripy caterpillar. Relieved to see her looking chirpy again, after her inflamed mouth was treated by removing all her back teeth! A fulvous hawk (would eat Barleria and Hypoestes, but came from Tecomaria. Web of life graphic at EOL.

 

Fulvous hawk caterpillar
Fulvous hawk caterpillar

Yellow Euryops daisies, one with grey leaves, the other lush Irish green.

 

Euryops
Euryops

Perfect pink rose Thuli Madonsela. Plectranthus saccatus covered in flowers across from our Adirondacks.

 

Pink rose and Plectranthus saccatus
Pink rose and Plectranthus saccatus

Flashes of orange from velvety Leonotis and silky Tecomaria.

 

Leonotis and Tecomaria
Leonotis and Tecomaria

Slowly retrieving the garden which got lost between lockdown gloom and then his knee.

 

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Pictures by Diana Studer

of Elephant's Eye on False Bay

 

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Comments

  1. I'm sorry to hear of Zoe's malady but glad that she's recovering. I'm sure you're enjoying the return of cooler weather and the opportunity to get back to work in the garden. Meanwhile, our spring is fleeting and summer has already been mounting a takeover at intervals.

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  2. I always enjoy visiting your garden Diana, it always has some exotic treats, even the caterpillar looks awesome! I have never seen a scarlet nerine only pink ones, it matches the season. It must be quite scary pruning those more unusual trees. Sarah x

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  3. The flowers are amazing as always. I hope you manage to prune the olive trees. Thanks for sharing the video.

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  4. Your garden always looks lovey and encourages me to look forward to the next season.
    Glad Zoe is feeling better.

    Jeannie@GetMeToTheCountry

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  5. I love the scarlet Nerine, and the Mandela Gold is lovely.. good luck with the pruning!

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  6. Aha! Finally I see a flower we have in common, plumbago! Although I must admit that it has become overly enthusiastic, and I’m trying to be rid of much of it. So lovely there, always.

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    Replies
    1. It comes from the Eastern Cape. Used to fending off herds of elephants and scrambling up TALL trees. Needs pruning for a garden resident!

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  7. Twenty tutu. I like it!

    ReplyDelete

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