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Attracting bats to your garden

 

The greatest benefits of having resident bats is that they are insect eaters and will keep your garden free of insect pests. They are wonderful seed dispersers and their excrement is an organic fertilizer. Bats are protected and there are about 36 species that live in our gardens. They are attracted to flowers that open at night and are fragrant, like the Barringtonia racemorsa, Kigelia africana and  Adansonia digitata.

Guidelines:

Don’t use any harmful pesticides or insecticides in your garden

Build a pond in your garden

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Create a garden for bees

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Creating a Garden for Bees

Plant a variety of plants that flower throughout the year.

Bees like flowers that are blue, yellow, violet and purple.

Bees are attracted to fragrant flowers.

Avoid the use of pesticides.

 

Trees

Acacia karroo - Sweet Thorn

Acacia mellifera - Black Thorn

Apodytes dimidiate – White Pear

Berchemia zeheri – Red Ivory

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Create a garden for butterflies

Don't use any pesticides and convert to an organic garden.

Plant trees as a larval host plant.

Leave open sunny areas.

Create wild, exclusion areas with grasses and a wide variety of plants.

A pond will provide water and a mud puddle.

Plant a hedge if you live in a windy area.

Butterflies are also attracted to rotting fruit, animal droppings, nectar made from honey in water and beer. 

The best time to watch butterflies is between 11 and 3 pm on sunny, windless days.

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Bulb Flowering Guide

Bulbous Plants – Flowering Calendar

Spring Flowering

Albuca nelsonii - Candelabrum Lily (Flowers in Sep to Dec)

Albuca tortulosa - (Flowers in Oct)

Aristea ecklonii - Blue Stars (Flowers in Oct to Dec)

Boophane disticha – Tumbleweed (Flowers in Jul to Oct)

Bulbiine abyssinian - Golden Stars (Flowers in Spring)

Bulbine frutescens - Stalked Bulbine (Flowers in Sept to Jun)

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Water wise entrance garden ideas

The most important thing to consider is visibility as one would not like to be responsible for an accident. Stick to low growing succulent plants which are colourful, waterwise and low maintenance. One can achieve a colourful entrance garden as there are many succulents with various shaped leaves and colourful leaves, Remember to plant with good compost and organic fertilizer and mulch well after planting to retain the moisture in the soil.Some plant suggestions are:

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Benefits of planting trees

Trees absorb carbon dioxide during the process of photosynthesis and release oxygen which we need to live. Those that grow on river banks reduce erosion and flooding. A treeless environment would not only be a great loss to all the birds, animals and insects that rely on trees but a very strange world. They do beautify the landscape and provide an environment for breeding and feeding for a diversity of wildlife. The shade in summer that is created by large trees reduces the cost of air conditioning whereas they slow the cold winds in winter and this saves heating costs.

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Dyes made from Indigenous plants

Acacia burkei root dye is yellow.

Acacia caffra gives a light brown colour

Acacia karroo bark gives a reddish colour

Acacia meliffera woodash dyes a red brick colour

Acacia sieberana gives a grey colour

Aloe zebrina and Aloe marlothii roots are used for a yellowish brown dye.

Aloe cryptopoda roots produce a reddish brown colour.

Berchemia discolour roots also produce a reddish brown colour whereas the boiled fruit gives an orange dye.

Carissa macrocarpa fruit is boiled to produce a pink dye.

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Fragrant Plants

Acacia ataxacantha Flame Thorn
Acacia eriloba Camel Thorn
Acacia galpinii Monkey Thorn
Acacia karroo Sweet Thorn
Acacia sieberiana Paperbark
Acacia tortilis Umbrella Thorn
Acacia xanthophloea Fever Tree
Acocanthera oppositifolia Bushman Poison
Albizia adianthifolia Flat Crown
Apodytes dimidiate White Pear
Asystasia gangetica Creeping Fox Glove
Buddleja auriculata Weeping Sage
Buddleja saligna False Olive
Buddleja salviifolia Sagewood
Bulbine capitata Scented Grass Bulbine

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Shady Vertical garden using water loving plants

Vertical Garden in the shade

for water loving  plants

 

Ferns

Adiantum cappillus-veneris

Cyrtomium falcatum

Pteris vittata

 

 

Height

Zantedescia aethiopica

Cyperus prolifera

 

 

Fillers and “spillers”

Aptemia cordifolia

Asystasia gangetica

Falckia repens

Isolepsis cenua

Selaginella kraussiana

 

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