Thursday, May 29, 2008


Yesterday I was tickeled pink by this post from FreshlyFound.

She's found a way to eat Deliscious Monsters and apparently they're good! There are even links to recipes.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Wanted or Unwanted?

This weekend I went to visit my folks and discovered that their lemon tree had been invaded by hundreds of ladybirds feasting on whatever else was feasting on the mildew.

They seemed to come in all patterns, colours and sizes. Can anyone tell me whether these are the ladybirds of 'killer' fame or not. Not so long ago I featured the red alert here!
The only thing that they seem to have in common is the two white spots on either sides of there heads.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Empty Vessels

A few weeks ago Gardening in South Africa had an article on "Getting creative with containers", something I've always battled with. Don't misunderstand, I have many, what I don't have is much in them and no real idea where to start.

So I've decided to follow Julie Andrews sound advice (excuse the pun) and start at the very beginning - the pots themselves. Here are a few examples.

Step 2: And now to address the space inside?! maybe some bulbs or winter herbs or even the odd ball?

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

History in the making

Many moons ago I posted these two posts and became part of Pay It Forward. I am finally making good and this is a sneak preview so that those ladies in waiting know I haven't forgotten, I'm just slow :-)

Monday, May 19, 2008

A Perfect Weekend

Thank you everyone for the birthday wishes. It's meant to be winter, but Saturday turned out beautifully at 24 degrees Centigrade and yesterday at a very humid 30 degrees. The only fire was the braai (barbeque) and this was how the day ended ~ a spectacular sunset (I got there at the last gasp) with big plump rain drops falling to the ground.

Things do get better with age after all.

Friday, May 16, 2008

What I'm looking forward to...

There's no cake big enough to hold a candle to my years so I've moved the goalposts.

One, two, three ... make a toasty wish this weekend.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

New Arrivals

Despite the success of 'The Dead Plant Society' I find myself compelled to spend more time with the living. It's a viscious cycle really.

About a year ago I planted this Wild Dagga. I had to really search to find the white variety as opposed to more readily available orange. Come to think of it I lost one of them to 'The Society'. Now it's started flowering and they are the most velvety soft looking pompoms ever!

My Irises have made it through four seasons and are back in bloom.

And last but not least I've planted some more restios.
Let the games begin!

Monday, May 12, 2008


Oh my goodness! Someone actually bought it. (And it wasn't my mom either I checked)

This is my tagine strutting its' stuff on the shelf. The pattern is carved in and the inside is a deep vibrant version of the seagreen in the pattern.

Friday, May 9, 2008

M is for...Malagas

I've always been interested by the marks & signs of our passing on our world. How ironic that the scar is the bit that has the bark left on this tree.

Malagas is on the banks of the Breede river near Swellendam.

This is where we spent our last weekend. These Milkwoods have always facinated me. They speak of age, dignity and shelter.

One day I'm going to take the perfect picture.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

The Dead Plant Society

Have you noticed how I've been avoiding my own garden. I've been doing a body count again after some summer planting.

Want to join the club? Membership to this elite society is only awarded postumously. Another criteria is that you had to have spent your entire life in one place.
The Membership role sofar:
The Silver trees
Butterfly bushes
The Rose geranium
A Lemon Verbena
And then there's the unwashed masses that get given paupers burials in unmarked graves. Sometimes being a plant in my garden is a thankless exsistence.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


It's finally arrived in all it's beautiful muted stormy colours. In Cape Town the North Wester brings rain and storms and gardens become soggy bogs but...

there is always an upside and in this case it means time spent indoors, soups, stews, puzzelling and planning. This is a sketch I did over the weekend. I know it's an alien invader but I love the soft green and delicate pods.

Read more about the Eucalypts and Myrtles here.

The other upside is that our indigenous plants thrive, streams throw themselves of Table mountain with abandon in tall waterfalls everywhere and the Cape is at it's most beautiful.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


Here are the details of the exhibition that I've been going on about. Small change ~ apparently it only opens on 7 May and not the 5th.

The starring tagine is not mine (the finished version which I haven't seen since firing) but I wish it was, it's gorgeous. I'm going to take a look over the weekend.

Veld School

Nature School for those of you not from here, something I grew up with as a kid and I think it's rubbed off on me. Maybe this trail we went on will do the same for our little folk.

With tales of snakes and cattle thieves Trevor and his second in command had them eating out of their hands. According to them these are some of the more interesting and unusual facts about some of our flora.

"Wild Cucumber": Xhosa tradition has it that a snake can replenish it's poison from this fruit only once it has turned red. This article on Page 4 is interesting.

"River Naboom": The name actually means like a tree or after a tree and as you can see it's actually a succulant with a milk sap that's extremely potent.
In Xhosa it's called a twin bush and is planted next a hut with twins in the family.

The San used it to stun fish in river pools.

Cattle thieves rubbed it on the hides of cattle. The hair would fall out and grow back a different colour, making the cattle impossible to identify. Click here for even more.

"Knob Tree": The bark of which is used for loads of things ranging from tooth ache to stomach ailments. But my favourite fact is that the Xhosa name for it is "European Titties"

If you ever find yourdelf in the Trennerys area on the Wild Coast I would highly recommend Trevors Trails. I enjoyed it so much I went back with the kids and they certainly had fun.