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As the days get warmer and longer, the team at Oude Werf Hotel is watching our garden waking up from winter and celebrating the first blooms. Don’t worry if you left preparing for spring a little late – there’s still a lot you can do to ensure your garden is a blooming success. Here are seven gardening tips from our group environmental manager, Chris van Zyl, on what to focus on in spring.

  1. If you haven’t yet tidied up your garden after winter you can still do it now. Remove untidy plant material, those plants that should have been pruned in winter can mostly still be pruned now.
  2. Prepare areas that you want to replant with a good dose of organic compost and fertilizer.
  3. If you have a sunny kikuyu lawn this can be cut shorter than normal, top-dressed with lawn dressing and fertilized with slow release organic fertilizer. If your lawn is in the shade or you have buffalo grass, start fertilizing now with slow release organic fertilizer.
  4. Much of the country is experiencing water shortages, and certainly in our beautiful valley, it looks like we will still have water restrictions this summer. Keep the moisture retained in the beds and reduce weed growth by applying mulch to your garden beds with partially decomposed organic material.
  5. This is an ideal time to plant; it is warm enough to give the plants a boost.
  6. Some herbs like thyme, marjoram and mint are ready to be planted out, as are as some of the vegetable seedlings like lettuce, chilli and tomatoes.
  7. Some of your summer annuals like petunias are already available but, considering the drought, I would recommend rather planting hardy indigenous ground cover like Felicia, which flowers almost all year.

Happy gardening!