Tag Archives: water-wise

Today John the farmer is sheet mulching !

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A Good use for Bad news…Today john the farmer is using newspaper to sheet mulch an area of the allotment !

Sheet mulching prevents weeds from coming up and retains the moisture in the soil.

A layer of well rotted biomass from the compost heap holds the newsprint down and prevents the paper from drying out.

I intend planting a ground cover of Sour fig (Carpobrotus) by making small holes in the newspaper and sticking the cuttings into them.

Carpobrotus

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Today John the farmer spotted this on his walk on the mountain.

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This Babiana plant is a perennial corm bulb in the Iris family. Apparently favoured by baboons that eat it’s corms (hence babiana), it survives amongst rock crevices on sandstone slopes and flats where it flowers in early spring.  Possibly B. ambigua, this one was found growing on the Swartberg mountains in the little Karoo.

Senecio articulatus. Candle plant/ hotdog plant/ worsies. Featured plant at Towerkop Nursery.

Kleinia

Senecio or Kleinia articularis is a succulent with blue-gray jointed stems resembling a string of sausages hence it’s name hotdog plant or ‘worsies’.

It has ivy shaped leaves that are seen seasonally, otherwise the stems are bare.

They spread and ramble under larger shrubs in the spekboomveld and gwarrieveld of the western cape and eastern cape of South Africa.

 

Helichrysum cymosum – Feature plant at Towerkop Nursery.

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Helichrysum cymosum 

Related to everlastings, this perrenial shrub volunteered on the allotment at Towerkop nursery. It grows to a metre high and flowers profusely from spring well into summer.

Occurs naturally on sandy slopes in damp places from the southwestern cape to Mpumalanga.

Moonstone, Pachyphytum flowering now at Towerkop Nursery.

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A native of Mexico, this Moonstone succulent flowers from late winter to early spring.

Tecoma flowering now at Towerkop Nursery.

Tecoma

This popular garden shrub attracts birds and butterflies to it’s tubular flowers, especially sunbirds!

It makes an effective hedge when trimmed but bushes out if left natural. Farmer’s encourage it’s growth along fences where it is kept in check by grazing animals.

Also called Cape honeysuckle, it is widely cultivated and very easy to propagate from cuttings or root suckers or runners.

It likes semi-shade to full sun, is drought tolerant and should be pruned back in late winter to encourage new growth.

The species occurs naturally in South Africa, Swaziland and southern Mozambique.

This plant has gained the Royal Horticultural Society’s award of garden merit.

Plant with Plumbago.

 

Chearful Portulacas flowering now at Towerkop Nursery.

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Portulacas are easy to grow succulent annuals that come in many colours. I like the salmon coloured ones the most !