False Bay garden in May
by Diana Studer
- gardening for biodiversity
in Cape Town, South Africa
We have had our first reports of snow on the mountains. Winter has landed. They say you can tell the temperature by the length of the cat. The Ungardener made Zöe's nest smaller, so she could tuck herself in. As baleful Thomas demonstrates, despite being at least twice as big, and with a thick fur coat too. The Princess however much prefers to recline on a double mattress, thank you.
Lesson 2 from Thomas. How To Soak Up Winter Sun!
Soaking Up Winter Sun
Our garden is knee deep in wet debris. Carloads of ivy. Maid of the Forest has another 2 panels behind her, and another one across the gap at the bottom of the garden.
|Maid of the Forest and higher walls|
Previous owner liked to see the mountain, but I have lost that option as our garden grew in.
|Her stepped wall now levelled off|
We prefer not to see - windows, doors, washing lines, bright orange Wendy houses. To pretend that we are surrounded by green gardens on all sides (not lawns and parked cars)
|Bye bye Wendy|
Camera is a good reality check. That flash of white from the neighbour's wall was so obvious to the human eye, but nothing my camera could capture for me.
|That irritating white flash above the previous wall|
Invisible on a photo till I added a dotted red line
I have squatters on my hiking jacket. Preying mantis eggcase. Now I must wait to rescue the babies when they hatch.
Another month to wait
Fuelling my iNaturalist addiction I have started a garden project there. First off the biggest, which is carob tree, then working along getting the names right. Tree of life taxonomy too. 79 actual species, with some broader IDs making 94 so far.
Including velvety grey back of camphor leaves. Heart leaf of Hibiscus tiliaceus. Huge leaves of Strelitzia nicolai. Thorns of Kei apple. Beautiful bark on Brachylaena discolor. An eye on the carob trunk, tree is perhaps twenty years old.
|Our trees for iNat garden project|
Purple leopard spots on Hypoestes aristata, the white underwhelming by comparison. Iceberg welcoming winter. Pink pelargonium also happy. For Through the Garden Gate. With Sarah in Dorset.
|Pink and white flowers in May|
Mostly green here. First Lachenalia bulbifera are open. My colour of happiness blue Felicia daisies. That Euryops must be delicious all the flowers are nibbled. Neighbouring Euryops pectinatus with grey leaves is NOT so tasty. Thru my window I see I missed two more. Orange Tecomaria capensis and sky blue Plumbago auriculata.
|May flowers in bright colours|
We have so much pruning ahead of us. Then I can give our seven year old garden some fresh lowland fynbos plants to fill the opening gaps.
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Pictures by Diana Studer
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