Baby Tree Mania

It’s interesting to see how everything changes. The plants in your garden grow, the weather goes from scorching hot into a massive storm in 1.5 seconds. You also might find yourself on the up and down roller coaster of life, as I have.

My disappointment in not being able to study horticulture was great, and now it has greatly been replaced by the fact that I have started studying it! All it took was finding a private provider of these courses and what do you know, suddenly you can’t stop staring at the parking lot of your favourite mall, trying to figure out which brick laying pattern has been used to build it!

It is very exciting, next week I’ll have to find a suitable landscape construction somewhere in Pretoria to write a massive paper on. In a few months I’ll have to design my dream garden – I wonder whether they’ll be as excited as I am about the unicorns…

Anyways, I might have mentioned that my marula tree has been stolen. One day I just noticed that it was gone, which made me obsess and turn the garage and the garden upside down and inside out, but I simply didn’t find it. And don’t try to tell me that a pot with a tree blew over a two meter wall in a storm! This was one of Dr Pink Cucumber’s theories (another one was that I just put it somewhere while I was in my maniac cleaning mode and I just can’t find it now, which is so UNTRUE! Both the losing the tree and the maniac cleaning. There is absolutely nothing wrong with cleaning all the time!).

So naturally, I went and ordered twenty more seeds, among others, from the fantastic Seeds for Africa (we loooove Black Friday discounts!). We’re a few weeks in, and here are my little babies:

Marulas

They are doing well in their cricket beer mugs and they also have a new friend – the day I started my horticulture course, my handsome Dr Pink Cucumber came home and surprised me with a little present – he dug out a baby acacia tree for me and brought it back in his sandwich bag! My heart completely melted at that point – very romantic, thoughtful and sustainable by reusing the little baggie! And I know, acacias are no longer called acacias, but oh well, old habits die hard.

Acacia

Our three mahogany trees are also doing well, looking ugly after being hit in a massive hail storm – oh yes, I did run around the garden like a maniac again, trying to pull all our trees into safety of the garage, with four baseball caps on my head to protect it!

Mahogany

I also have stolen a pod of seeds from the University of Pretoria – it contained four big seeds which are now four beautiful unidentified baby trees! Now you get why this post is titled Babe Tree Mania, huh?

Uni

One last one – our giant Slovak tomato ‘Brutus’ is doing extremely well as you can see. The tomatoes weigh up to 1kg!

Tomato

In my next post I have an update on my Russian heist, back when we survived the longest trip of my life. Oh, and I’ve been nagging Dr Pink Cucumber for weeks now – The Gardener Expo is coming back to Pretoria in March! Can’t wait!

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DIY Watering Can

Quiz question for R10 (this should be easy since I’m offering that little money): What is wrong with the following picture?2705My answer would be: nothing. I am that used to my watering can nozzle being broken.

I decided to deal with this situation once and for all and therefore I present to you hero of our story today – milk container. Yes, hoarding once again. What you’ll need is a drill an one minute of your time to drill several holes in the lid.2705bIt’s really simple from here: fill, twist and pour!2705cYou can you a container of any size, just make sure you’ve cleaned it properly before use. It’s a simple and cheap solution to the ever broken nozzle problem!

 

Autumn Garden – Frost Protection for Trees

Just one comment about my last week – real estate heaven does NOT exist. Somebody is lying to us.

Winter is coming and with it one of gardener’s biggest enemy – frost (if you think about it, gardeners have a lot of enemies!). As I went totally crazy buying little baby trees in summer, now comes the responsibility of protecting them from frost.

But what is frost? The basic formula is vapor + below freezing temperatures. This combination affects our gardening massively – summer vegetables won’t grow and fruit trees pretend they are bears and go off into hibernation.

Older trees usually do not struggle with frost, but the younger ones need to be protected. For the demonstration purposes meet Mr. Amandel, my almond tree. Frost damage is serious, therefore I decided to find a cheaper form of protecting your trees than buying netting.

What you’ll need is the tree of your choice of course, scissors, thread or a rope and, drum roll please – dried out grass. Bullterrier puppy is optional. 1905

Simply wrap the trunk with grass, first from the back, then from the front and tie it with the rope. How easy is that! 1905bThe beauty of it is that it’s for free, it makes you go for a walk (looking very awkward, since you’re carrying a bin bag and a pair of scissors with you) and it’s effective.

For the best frost protection you may also cover the main twigs of your trees. If your trees are still in buckets like mine (since we’re planning to move), a great idea is to place them in a sunny spot, so they get as much sunshine as possible during the day.

So go off on a walk, enjoy some beautiful sunshine we’re getting now and collect material for little tree winter coats!