Building a Garden

Some of you may not know this, but I come from a family that is pretty fantastic at growing plants.

My Dad is a Farmer who has won Tobacco Farmer of the year before in Zimbabwe and reaps tonnes and tonnes of food crops every season, and my Mom is a Horticulturist who is also one of the few Horticultural Judges left in Zimbabwe and owned a nursery in Zimbabwe for quite some time. One parent literally grew plant life to put my sister and I through school and provide a lovely life for our family, and the other basically judges how perfect of a specimen the plant you are growing is…. I can’t keep anything other than myself alive (and even that has been touch and go over the years)

I am turning 30 this year, and as I have gotten older my interests have changed and things that use to bored me (gardening) are now really really cool.  I would much rather be in bed at 10:30 on a Friday so I can go plant shopping or walk around a nursery on a Saturday planning my garden and shopping for the perfect statement plants to add to my indoor plant collection.

The problem is though plants are not cheap, in fact plants are pretty darn expensive, and if you aren’t blessed with green fingers like me, it’s an expensive under taking to buy something just so you can watch it slowly die for the next 3 months (and now I understand why my Mom takes cuttings of every plant she doesn’t have and why her and her friends trade plants and seeds etc).

I am trying to get better in that I am researching things more, and finding out why things die instead of just throwing them away like I would have in the past. I am currently trying to bring a Japanese fern I bought from Woolies back to life (wish me luck).

My Mom for my last birthday got me this very very cool book and it really is a total life saver, it has everything you need to know about what plants make great indoor plants and where to put them, how much light they need etc.

With the expense of plants I have started propagating plants that I already have in the house, and from friends, strangers and anywhere I can really, because I am building a grand indoor garden and soon in my house I will have an actual garden to play in and start growing things.

I started off with succulents because they are by far the easiest to propagate and also with the water issues in South Africa, they don’t need much watering so it seemed start.

These cactus had their roots soaking in water for about 3 weeks to get a rad root structure before I planted them, but you don’t NEED to do that I just did because I didn’t have pots or soil when I first took the clippings. You can just cut the cactus/succulent, leave if for a while till the cutting has healed or developed like a film over where you cut it (I leave for a day) and then you can plant it right from there into soil.

 

I think it turned out pretty well, and these pots were only like R50 for the pot and the drip tray from The Gardenshop in Parktown north.

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