Western Cape guides
We’re all wishing for another winter of good rains! While you wait, get your garden ready for the cooler months ahead by sowing our list of winter vegetables, feeding your lawn, pruning plants and treating common garden pests.
Spotlight on: Gift ideas for Mother’s Day
Want to honour your mom this Mother’s Day with a thoughtful gift to let her know how much she means to you? Help her cultivate a green space with a few gardening gift ideas:
- A trendy terrarium for her living room
- A popular Scindapsus aureus plant for an indoor shelf
- If you’re struggling to decide on the perfect gift, indulge her with a Stodels Gift Card and let her choose her favourite.
ON YOUR TO-DO LIST FOR MAY
Plant & Sow
- Plant drought-tolerant varieties such as bougainvilleas, De Wet aloes, duinekraaibessie, leucadendrons, Margaret Roberts lavender, Natal plums, geraniums, plumbago, proteas, rosemary, spekboom, tulbaghia and wild iris.
- Plant seedlings such as calendulas, carnations, cinerarias, dianthus, pansies, phlox, poppies, primula, salvia, strawberries, verbena and violas.
- Plant spring-flowering bulbs such as chincherinchee, freesia, iris, ixia, narcissus, ranunculus, sparaxis and tritonia.
- Sow seeds of African daisy, alyssum, cornflower, linaria, lobelia, sweet pea and Virginian stocks. Tip: Encourage efficient sweet pea growth by mulching regularly, snipping off new tendrils and side shoots, and using a trellis or stake to keep individual plants upright.
- Sow winter veggies, including asparagus, beetroot, broad beans, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, garlic, leeks, onions, parsley, parsnips, peas, spinach and turnips. Tip: When digging trenches to plant asparagus, the crowns must be spaced 45cm apart. Ensure the trench width is 45cm wide and then dig 25–30cm deep.
- Feed azaleas, camellias and tea bushes with a handful of 3:1:5 fertiliser per bush. Mulch with compost and keep well watered.
- Use a handful of 2:3:2 per square metre to feed your lawn before rainfall.
- Feed spring-flowering bulbs with bulb food and keep the soil moist at all times.
- Indoor plants like calceolarias, cinerarias, cyclamen, daffodils, hyacinths, poinsettias and primulas should be fed every two weeks with a liquid fertiliser. Water every three days or when the soil feels dry.
- Discontinue feeding pot plants. Water less frequently, but don’t let the plants become dry.
- Thin out citrus trees as well as other evergreen fruit trees.
- Tidy up summer- and autumn-flowering shrubs, including barleria, hydrangea, lavender, plumbago, ribbon bush and wild dagga.
- To maintain the size and shape of conifers, prune them lightly.
- Climbers like canary creeper, clematis, golden shower tree and wisteria also benefit from pruning in autumn.
OTHER FRESH IDEAS
Keep pests at bay
- Treat conifers with Koinor (chemical-based) or Bioneem (organic-based) to tackle aphid infestations.
- Spray roses, pelargoniums and geraniums with a fungicide like copper soap (organic-based) or Orius (chemical-based) to prevent rust, mildew and black spots. Make sure to spray under the leaves, too.
- Try organic snail bait like Ferramol or surround precious seedlings with crushed eggshells, sawdust or coffee grounds to curb snails.