01/11/12
Chris Maddams of Red Daffodil, www.reddaffodil.co.za, which has branches in Cape Town and Johannesburg, says that being water-wise, having an understanding and sympathy for your local environment in planting indigenous, and aiming for organic principles in pest care and feeding have been established for a while. "Principles that are accelerating are definitely anti-lawn – seeing as they take the greatest amount of water and upkeep – and filling in or moving swimming pools. Plant-wise, grasses are noticeable in their popularity. because they need to be planted en masse, they suit both modern and traditional styles, plus we are seeing new varieties of both indigenous and exotic grasses that are suitable for smaller gardens."

Hot Tip: "My best advice if you want to go indigenous is to take a look at the trees you have," says Chris. "Most of the mature trees I see in urban gardens are exotics, so why not go out and buy an indigenous tree, plant it as close as possible (or choose something that is used to growing under a canopy like a Forest Alder or Nuxia floribunda) and over time trim back the exotic until the new tree can replace it without you ever having to lose your privacy or shade - in effect creating a succession plan." Jane says, "Frankly I am not really influenced by trends and feel that it is of prime importance that the garden and house are in harmony. Each garden has its own unique character as does its owner. as with any art form, it is subjective and individual. The house, trees, shrubs and lawns must form part of an integrated whole. However, in the light of the availability of water in South Africa, I would say that the general trend is towards water-wise gardening and indigenous plantings."

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