JJ’s garden solutions
Replanting pincushions Danie Zeelie of Reebok in the Western Cape writes
I have two pincushion plants that are currently in full bloom but I need to move them – we’re erecting a wall at our home and they’re both in the way. Is it OK for me to move them now? I’m concerned that they won’t recover after replanting.
JJ replies Pincushions, like proteas, don’t care much for replanting. If you have to do it, I’d suggest waiting until early winter when they enter a resting period. Cut away two-thirds of the branches to facilitate growth and water well after you’ve moved them to the new spot in your garden.
An unruly mess! Patsy Crisp of Cape Town writes
I live in a ground-floor flat and just outside is a garden bed with a tall deciduous tree in the middle of it. During winter, the leaves fall constantly which means I have to do a lot of sweeping. The trustees won’t allow me to remove it. While the surrounding plants are growing well, it becomes wild very quickly.
I’ve considered removing the vegetation and decking the area with a seat around the tree but any suggestions on how to create a low-maintenance but attractive area would be welcome.
JJ replies You could commit to removing some of the branches throughout the year, but the mess will remain as long as the tree does. Decking the area will create an even bigger problem as the leaves will get swept underneath where cleaning is difficult and then rot. The tree’s root system might also lift the deck over time. In my opinion, the best low-maintenance solution would be to garden in containers and flower boxes.
CONTACT JJ van Rensburg is a horticulturist at Garden World in Johannesburg; visit gardenworld.co.za.
Listen to JJ’s gardening tips and tricks on Derrich Gardner’s show Brekfis met Derrich at 07:40 every Saturday on RSG.