The purple shall govern

- gardening for biodiversity
in Cape Town, South Africa

Someone (I am not nearly such an organised gardener!) has flipped a switch in our garden. It is autumn, let there be purple. Seven of these plants I was pleased to find established in the garden. I worked around what I found. Moved some. And I am enjoying filling the gaps with those I love - purple sage, Rotheca and Barleria. For Cornish Stripe (blue and purple with white) I still need purple daisies as a groundcover Dimorphotheca jucunda. A year ago the garden was purple, but this year I miss my Limonium and Felicia - both thoughtful, and the inherited violets which have vanished.

Hypoestes aristata
Hypoestes aristata
Ribbon bush

Hypoestes aristata inherited in purple and white. There are seedlings volunteering all over the garden, which will need careful rearranging and editing. Called ribbon bush as the petals curl back to gift wrap the garden.

Foreign April flowers
Foreign April flowers

Lavender and Mexican sage joined by my new purple sage, three foreigners among the indigenous.

Septemberbossie with Oxford and Cambridge
April shrubs
Septemberbossie
Oxford and Cambridge

Two indigenous shrubs. Septemberbossie Polygala myrtifolia found in pots which we moved across to the far side of our garden. STILL need more nurturing to get past the neglected twiggy look. Oxford and Cambridge Rotheca came with us in a small pot from Porterville.

Plectranthus species
Plectranthus species

Tall shrubby Plectranthus ecklonii and sprawling stoep jacaranda Plectranthus saccatus are residents. I brought gazillion Plectranthus neochilus to join them.

Barleria April violets
Barleria
April violets

New favourite is April violets blooming on cue for the first time. Barleria obtusa  in a soft periwinkle blue.

Plumbago
Plumbago

Inherited Plumbago is the original and perfect sky blue with softly purple honey guides. Joining Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day at May Dreams Gardens in Indiana. 


Human chain Zuma must fall
Human chain
Zuma must fall

Friday the 7th of April we joined the human chain stretching from Simon's Town to Muizenberg and on in groups all the way to Parliament. Zuma must fall - he has the very doubtful claim of uniting the country. Against him.

The purple shall govern - is a memory of the apartheid government using water cannon with purple dye against protesters in September 1989. The year the Berlin Wall fell. Our protest was peaceful, from the frail elderly to small kids.


Katzenleiter Cat ladder
Katzenleiter
Cat ladder

Thomas has had lessons in being a Swiss cat. Climbing lessons, advanced as he has to turn himself around on the steps. Himself is a bit sturdy to leap up onto the wall (as our other cats could). Up went more easily, and he really enjoys being on Neighbourhood Watch. Down ... he prefers the shortcut of pouring himself along the wall. But he has learnt to come down the top two steps, then pour. And he begins to take himself up there, without the teacher chivvying him along. Hmm now takes himself out for the evening and has to trigger the light at the front door when he wants to come back IN!

The Ungardener has built him a four step ladder. There were offcuts from the PVC barge boards which replaced the rotten wood on our 'conservatory'. Swiss cats who live in upper storey flats often have a Katzenleiter, a cat ladder from the window or balcony zigzagging down to the ground.

Inspiring Thomas
Inspiring Thomas

Thomas walks carefully across the curved top of the gate to reach the inspired half of the wall.

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Comments

  1. Our cat won't climb the ladder to the attic. Therefor I can imagine that it must be an adventure for Thomas to go up there and down again.
    Elke

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. you remind me - when Aragon was young she would run up and down the (wooden for people) ladder!

      Delete
  2. I love all the purple autumn color. I have several of those plants in my own garden but I'd be thrilled if they got half as robust as your specimens. However, Polygala did surprise me by self-seeding in the front garden this year, probably aided by our good winter rain. I've just moved the seedlings to more appropriate spots and have my fingers crossed the transplants survive.

    I love Thomas's ladder. I've no doubt he enjoys his new role as neighborhood watch commander!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My Polygala seedling is filling in very nicely. Hope yours settle in happily.

      Delete
  3. Love Thomas' ladder. When our elderly cat had a leg amputated we made him a ramp to reach higher levels. He wasn't impressed, although our ginger cat likes it. Contrary. Lovely purple flowers:). B x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thomas took some convincing to get from the 2nd to the 3rd step.

      Delete
  4. A cat ladder! That is fun! Thanks for the information about the human chain--I will do more research to learn more about it. Gorgeous purple and pinkish blooms! My favorites are the Hypoestes and Polygala. Happy autumn!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's a good feeling to stand together in peaceful protest.
      With the passing traffic hooting in support.

      Delete
  5. I would love Septemberbossie for the name alone! Thomas seems to be the governing around your place. (No protests needed for him!)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When he barrels past, we stand aside!

      Delete
  6. I love purple, and you have some beauties, some familiar as they grow well here.

    Best wishes for a peaceful transition to a government satisfactory and beneficial to all. We need that here, too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Zuma was one of the first country leaders that Trump spoke to.
      Not sure which of our countries suffers more by that.

      Delete
  7. I like your purple flowers, and I think the Sage plant family are wonderful for the garden, we love our Peppermint Sage because it brings the birds and provides colour in autumn.
    Thomas has grown into a magnificent cat, he looks like the King of the Castle on top of that fence!
    I hope your peaceful protest is successful, I'm crossing my fingers for you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have Salvia greggii to keep the Mexican sage happy.
      The burnt orange indigneous one needs to be joined by a blue one.
      And I miss pineapple sage for the sunbirds and me.

      Delete
  8. Autumn here usually means orange; I prefer purple. P. x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Orange I get when the fiddlewood turns thru spring to summer.

      Delete
  9. Purple seems to mean royalty and status in my background...I'd rather see purple in gardens than in so many governments, their media, and so on. Our ephemeral Phaecelia will have to do for purple...just no match for your autumnal purples like Plectranthus ecklonii!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It seems the plants are so relieved at autumn coolth after summer drought - have NEVER had so much colour here before!

      Delete
  10. I googled purple and came across a fascinating site: https://www.colormatters.com/the-meanings-of-colors/purple. Such an interesting colour! No matter how bad our politicians (and Zuma is high on that list) it is admirable when a country is able to sort itself out peacefully. It must have been wonderful to be part of that human chain. I wanted to go to the March for Science this weekend but had a social commitment that I thought I'd better keep. Sometimes it's a shame you can't be in 2 places at the same time. A cat ladder is a totally new concept to me! Thomas is lucky to have acquired such caring humans.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I shall look at my purple flowers with an extra layer of interest!

      (Strange how I have no commitments - then U3A and the garden club both choose the SAME Wednesday in the month)

      Delete
  11. Purple is such a wonderful rich color for autumn. Good for you for participating in the human chain. In two days, I will join one of many Climate Marches around the United States to protest the Trump administration's intentions to cut back environmental regulations and even scientific study of climate change.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good to hear about the Climate Marches. Anthropocene, global weirding, affects all of us. Environmental regulations are about people AND nature, not a 'nice but expensive extra'

      Delete

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