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Sea Lavender

Sea Lavender, or Statice as I know this plant to be called, is another very easy plant to grow. This one seems to prefer full sun though.

I grew these from seed. They have teeny tiny seeds that will germinate fairly easily as long as you have put them under a small layer of sand, and watered them fairly regularly. They seem to only germinate if the temperatures are warm enough, as I tried germinating these in my previous house, which got no sunlight or warmth during the day, and the seeds would just not grow.

I have only ever seen the purple variety, even though the seedling packet that I bought stated “mixed colour”. But, never the less, they are still gorgeous with their purple, papery flowers with the white tufts.

Do any of you have any other colours growing?

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Clivia Miniata

This is an indigenous South African plant, that only flowers for a few short months, but boy is it beautiful!

When we bought our house last year, I was blown away by the hundreds of Clivias, but I noticed that very few of them were actually flowering. During the dreary winter months this year I tackled the beds with Clivias in them, and thinned them down to just a few plants per bed. The result was loads and loads of flowers that have popped up and the plants look a lot more healthy.

These Clivias get very little actual sunlight as they are under some very dense trees, I water the bed they are in every two to three days and it seems like they are very happy with this treatment!

Have you got Clivias in your garden?

Fresh, Tasty Basil

I love the smell of fresh basil and I love to cook with it. I have always struggled though, with growing it myself.

Now, I know that it is a very easy seed to germinate, but I never manage to get it to grow correctly. My previous attempts left me with long stemmed seedlings, with only one set of real leaves and then the seedling goes yellow and withers.

In the past I have germinated the seeds on top of some soil (as they are so tiny) and I have kept the container covered to keep all the moisture and humidity trapped inside. So this time I decided to try a different tactic and I put the seeds into the soil and left the container open to the air and just made sure that I water every single day!

The resulting basil leaves are absolutely gorgeous with the most perfect set of leaves I have ever managed to grow!

My next few herbs to conquer are coriander and chives! I have struggled with both of these in the past…

Little Bit of Spring

As if the universe read my previous post about how dreary winter can get. My garden started to come alive again.

It could very well have something to do with the fact that I had started a bit more of a regular watering schedule, and that I had started actively gardening again, but it’s always nice believing you have some control on the universe…

I took a walk around my garden and started to notice all of the small buds popping up. The Clivias (Indigenous to South Africa) which start to bloom in August, or so I am told, have started budding as you can see here…

I also spotted a geranium, that has not flowered in the year that we have lived in our house. It has FINALLY, put out the most beautiful blooms!

As I mentioned above, a bit more of a consistent watering schedule, as well as some clearing up of the beds seems to have brought everything back to life a little bit.

❄Winter Woes❄

It is dull and dreary, not many plants want to grow and there is such a time limit on afternoon gardening time.

I really dislike this time of year, it feels a little like my sparkle is gone, purely because when I get home after work it is too cold and dark to get into the garden and appreciate my plants.

Also, everything seems to stagnate, very few of my plants are sending out new growth and everything looks like it is just holding on.

I took a walk around my garden over the weekend and noticed the very few plants that are actively growing, one of which are my sunflowers, that are just getting ready to open their blooms

I planted these sunflowers in April, and I would guess they are about a week or two away from opening up to show their beautiful happy blooms!

Does winter also get you down? I hope that where ever you are in the world is a lot more summery than it is here in South Africa.