Posts Tagged ‘ tools ’

August in the Garden Checklist An extraordinary, rewarding August

Posted on: July 13th, 2021 by Cassidy No Comments

With the great winds of change upon us, dare we say the smell of spring approaches! All your hard work this winter will soon pay off as August comes to reward the garden with extraordinary blooms in gorgeous hues for every mood. There’s one more month of cool-season stunners to enjoy with daisy bushes leading the pack. Make sure to tick off your maintenance checklist and begin prepping the lawn for September. Edibles are exciting in August too and there’s much to sow and munch on. Hold onto your hats and let’s glide right in!

 

Fulfilling flowers
Strikingly crazy for daisies

Colour blast your way through the wind and immerse outdoor beds in bold and brave daisy bushes. The vivid variety of daisy blooms will pop off brilliantly against the winter landscape and are simply stand out additions to the  garden. Daisies flourish in containers, beds, and borders that receive full sun. Bushes can be sown and/or planted in autumn for a vibrant August gust of colour. Here are seven striking inspirations:

  1. Cape daisy (Osteospermum): Indigenous and water-wise in deep shades of many magical colours to choose from, flowering from spring to autumn.
  2. Marguerite daisy (Argyranthemum): Blooms attract butterflies, available in pretty coloured hues for every mood that flower from spring to autumn. Single and double flowers available.
  3. English daisy (Bellis perennis): A fast grower and spreader with uniquely rounded red, white, and pink flowers, blooming in masses from winter to spring.
  • Golden daisy bush (Euryops chrysanthemoides): Compact and evergreen with bright golden-yellow blooms peaking from autumn to spring.
  • Livingstone daisy (Mesembryanthemum): Dark centres blend into radiant shades of pinks, purples, orange, yellow, and crimson. Flowering begins in August, peaking in September.
  • Shasta daisy (Leucanthemum): Cheerful and quick-spreading with robust all-white petals and a yellow centre. These lovelies bloom from late spring to autumn.
  • Kingfisher daisy (Felicia amelloides): Local and lively with masses of sky-blue petals and yellow centres.  They attract butterflies and flower from spring to autumn.

 

Daisy do’s: Although performing best during colder climates, daisy bushes will flower repeatedly throughout the year. If you maintain them well with regular watering, feeding, and deadheading, your garden will be rewarded with near-constant colour and frequent surprises popping up.

 

Top tip: Fly over to your GCA Garden Centre and see which crazy daisies are in-store and in bloom now. Don’t forget your compost and organic fertiliser while you're there.

More mad blooms to sow now: It’s wakey-wakey to winter beds with marigolds, cosmos, lobularia, cleomes, godetias, lavateras, phlox, sunflowers, impatiens, and begonia.

Blushing August bulbs to plant now: These summer-flowering bulbs are ready for some rich soil, sun, and water: gladiolus, calla lilies, cannas, spider lilies, George lilies, tuberoses, galtonias, schizostylis, crocosmias, storm lilies, arum lilies, and dahlias.

Top tip: Don’t be tempted to cut off the leaves of your spring bulbs just yet. Although they have finished flowering, they need these leaves to make food for the developing bulb.

A rosy reminder: Ensure all roses have been pruned and increase watering. Spray bare stems to kill insect eggs and fungus spores. Relocation and transplanting should also be done now, followed by a good feeding. Visit your GCA Garden Centre for rose care essentials.

Marigold
In the grow zone

Edibles for sowing from seed packets

  • In frost-free areas, sow these summer crops now: runner beans, dwarf beans, maize, sweet corn, pumpkins, and squashes.
  • Herbs heralding the spring sunshine: sweet basil, coriander, and rocket.

* Remember to harvest your root veggies: parsnips, turnips, beetroot, carrot, and radish.

 

Edibles for growing from seedlings

  • Plant out rhubarb, shallots, garlic, globe artichokes, tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant.

*Also remember to top-dress perennial crops such as asparagus.

Motivated maintenance

Lawn loving

  • Begin prepping the lawn for spring with lawn dressing, fertiliser, and compost.
  • Your pre-spring treatment includes low mowing, firm raking, leveling out, and covering with lawn dressing.
  • Sow seeds for shade lawn now.

 

Wind whirling

  • The windy month has arrived. Stake all newly planted trees to prevent toppling and breakages.
  • Ensure all creepers are securely supported on trellises and tie-down branches where needed.
  • Mulch around your edibles to prevent wind erosion and help retain warmth.

 

Slug repelling

  • Slugs and snails are eager to feast on soft spring plantings. Go to battle by planting barrier plants around new greens.
  • Barrier plants include mint, garlic, chives, geraniums, and fennel.
  • Goggas are deterred by the pungent smell and taste of these natural pest-repelling plants.

 

Ladybugs to the rescue: Our eco-hero of the month is the sweet little ladybug. She may be pretty, but mealybugs, aphids, scale, caterpillars, and thrips beware of her deadly munching crunch! These pesky critters are her favourite meals and she’ll make quick work of them too.

Some cold caution: In very cold regions, leave pruning of frost-damaged plants until next month as the affected foliage protects the plant in case of another frostbite attack.

Your GCA Garden Centre is ready to receive your August enthusiasm, so head on over to see what grabs you and sparks your inspiration. Have an extraordinarily rewarding last month of winter and well done for keeping your crops and flowers flourishing. Daisies are your best colourful cover-up for gardens that took a little beating in the cool season. Plant some now and blow away the haters! Life is a Garden, just grow with it.

July Checklist Gardening Checklist

Posted on: June 9th, 2021 by Cassidy No Comments

July is all about colourful comforts in the garden and enjoying the hearty harvest winter has to offer. Keep your beds looking lush with a sensational selection of flowers available from your GCA Garden Centre. Don’t forget your July maintenance to help your garden stay in top shape and ready for the last cold stretch. Enjoy the journey with your landscape and take some time to appreciate the remarkable changes of Mother Nature.

 

Beat the winter blues
  • Surround yourself with colourful comforts available at nurseries now: primose, alyssum/lobularia, violas, pansies, verbena, Primula malacoides, Primula obconica, Primula acaulis, and ornamental kale.
  • Robust succulents: Aloe Hedgehog, aloe Ferrox, and aloe Speciosa.
  • Gems: Krantz aloe, Basuto kraal aloe, nandina, viburnum, camellia, holly and Elaeagnus.
  • Indoor babies: Move indoor plants to warmer parts of the house if needed. Also check that your plants are getting enough light.

A flying reminder: Help the birds out and ensure your birdbath and bird feeder is well-stocked. Food is scarce for the flyers during the winter months.

Everything edible
  • Garden centre treasures: Fig, olive, grape, cherry, peach, plum, and apple trees are available at GCA Garden Centres from July.
  • Harvest now: Horseradish, asparagus, celeriac, parsnips, sweet potatoes, and waterblommetjies.
  • Split & divide: Divide your asparagus and rhubarb now for a larger yield and remember to mulch well after transplanting.
  • Support: Stake broad beans and Brussels sprouts to give them more support and increase growth.
  • Feed: Remember to feed your winter veg seedlings with nutritious fertilisers and compost. Also, feed your spring bulbs and clivias now.
  • Mulch up: Much beds well to retain warmth and moisture.
  • Water down: Be careful of overwatering during winter every 3rd day should be sufficient.

Top tip: Use bird netting or frost cover sheets to deter birds while also allowing light and air into the veggie garden.

Perfect pruning & maintenance

A little off the top: Deciduous shrubs, golden shower, barleria, ribbon bush, wild dagga, westringia, and hydrangeas. Also cut back bougainvilleas that have finished flowering.

Hard pruning: Fruit trees should be pruned substantially to adjust their structure and to remove any sick or diseased branches. At least 40% of the tree should be pruned out, especially low growing rootstock suckers and water sprouts. Also, remove any grey, non-fruiting shoots but leave the reddish 1-year-old shoots.

Cut away: All dead wood, diseased branches and leaves, large trees casting unwanted shade. Remember to add all this organic matter to the compost heap.

Check your tools: Sharpen your garden blades, lawnmower blades, and replace any old pruning shears. Remember to get your lawnmower and edge cutters serviced too, spring is going to be busy!

Rose care: Start pruning roses at the end of the month and spray with Kumulus afterwards. Feed them with a rose fertiliser and apply a new layer of mulch around the bushes. Also transplant roses that need to be moved now. Seal pruning wounds and spray with fungicide as wasps like to lay eggs in newly pruned, soft areas.

Fertilise your rose bush roots after pruning with bonemeal, compost, or phosphate. Most rose fertilisers have a low middle number that is ideal for root feeding.

Top tip: Visit your GCA Garden Centre for advice on products to help seal pruning wounds as well as which sprays and fertilisers to use after fruit tree and rose pruning.

There’s much on the maintenance to-do list this month, for which you will be well rewarded! Make sure your beds are ready to brave the cold and bring in some colour with balmy blooms. A little pruning maintenance and mulch goes a long way in helping your bushes and trees through harsh winter climate changes. Head over to your GCA Garden Centre and see what other inspirations await you.

DIY Father’s Day Pallet Tool Hanger A gift for father's day

Posted on: May 11th, 2021 by Cassidy No Comments

This month we’re celebrating all dads and father figures in our lives. Get the family involved with this practical, thoughtful, and fun DIY project. Give dad a hand and let’s get those tools sorted, in true gardener style. Who knows, this DIY may as well give poppa that little boost he needs to get his handy-man on and complete those outstanding projects! #Weloveyoudad

You will need:
  • A pallet
  • Paint or wood varnish and brush
  • A drill
  • Wood hooks (to hang pots)
  • Bucket-style pots with handles (make sure that your wood hooks are large enough to support the pots and fit the pot handle size)
  • Pot plants (choose non-creeping/climbing plants and go for an upright beauty instead)
  • Potting soil from your GCA Garden Centre
  • U-type double hook tool hangers and matching screws. Choose hooks that are coated with plastic/rubber to protect dad’s tools from scratches (available at hardware stores).

Top tip: Your GCA Garden Centre has a variety of bucket-style pots and baskets to choose from, and of course, a glorious selection of pot-perfect plants. Take the kids along for a fun family outing!

Plant picks: If you have a sunny spot in mind, choose Succulents and cacti as no-fuss greenery that will thrive off a little neglect (they look super rugged too!). Visit your GCA Garden Centre to discover what other semi-shade and full shade plants are available now.

 

Go-go MacGyver:
  1. Give your pallet a coat of paint or wood varnish in the colour of your choice. Encourage kids to paint some pictures for dad or little messages on the panels.
  2. Decide where you would like to hang your pots and look at what kind of tools dad uses the most. We recommend a line of 4 hanging pots along the second panel, leaving space for larger tools to hang below.
  3. Drill 4 holes, evenly spaced, across your panel. Choose a drill bit that is slightly smaller in diameter than the wood hooks so that you can twist your hooks into the drilled holes by hand.
  4. Twist the wood hooks into the ready-drilled holes.
  5. Half-fill your pots with nutritious potting soil. Transplant your new babies into the pots and give them a good watering. Let them drain completely.
  6. Hang your plants on the hooks by the handle-end of the pot.
  7. Now it’s time to gather dad’s most used tools and pop ‘em on the panels. Drill holes for the fancy U-type double hook tool hangers and fasten them using screws. Placement of the hooks will depend on the size of the tools you are planning to hang. Give it some thought and arrange the hooks to best suit dad’s handy-man essentials.

Top tip: Use the open compartments of the panels for dad to store other hardware accessories and perhaps a couple of beers too. You may even want to line the insides of the panels with a plastic material for easy cleaning and grab-and-go convenience.

This DIY is perfect as a heartfelt gift to any person in your life that’s your go-to MacGyver. Enjoy helping dad out this Father’s Day and show him that you support all of his hard work around the house. Thanks for all the lightbulb changes, picture hanging, shelf-assembling, and those much-loved dad-jokes!