28 October, 2015

Our False Bay garden in October

By Diana Studer
- gardening for biodiversity
in Cape Town, South Africa

White everlasting Syncarpha vestita is called Cape snow. At Cape Point when the little bushes are covered in flowers they look like sheep scattered across the landscape, especially to once were early farmers.

Cape snow Syncarpha vestita

21 October, 2015

Mermaid with A Hat, or mushrooms and brooms with Monty Don

By Diana Studer
- gardening for biodiversity
in Cape Town, South Africa

November 2008 there were open gardens in Franschhoek (23rd to 25th October 2015). One of those lovely Western Cape town's awash in wine estates and tourists. Also beautiful gardens, as we discovered. I have heard of Monty Don. We haven't seen the TV programme, or read the book. But, I did look up his 'Around the World in 80 Gardens'. Any gardener who comes to South Africa goes to Kirstenbosch, an award-winning botanical garden. Fynbos (proteas, ericas, restios and bulbs) with the back of the Table Mountain chain as borrowed scenery.

Mushrooms in Henk Scholtz garden

14 October, 2015

Melianthus major - Honey Flower for the Birds!

By Diana Studer 
- gardening for biodiversity 
 in Cape Town, South Africa

Almost a year in our new False Bay home and I start a fresh Dozen for Diana. The carob tree was the first Discovered Treasure. In November I choose pelargoniums for my new Dozen.

Thru the livingroom window we look across the checkerboard of Rose Courtyard backed by next door's garage wall. A small stage set and the actress who opens the performance is Melianthus major.

Melianthus major

07 October, 2015

To Elgin and Klein Optenhorst visiting gardens

By Diana Studer 
- gardening for biodiversity 
 in Cape Town, South Africa

A story of grass

Chapter 1

We visit open gardens, for a change of scenery. Looking for ideas - I like that, we could do that, I must have that plant. I went to Klein Optenhorst (opens 24th and 25th October in 2015), Jenny Ferreira’s garden in Wellington. In October 2006 with the flower club, October 2007 and March 2009 with the Ungardener. Both the house and the olive tree have a long history. Tall oaks throw some shade, and two large farm dams catch the river flowing down from the mountains. An international collection of sage / Salvia.

Klein Optenhorst 2006