Grocott's Mail

Green is where the heart is


Birdsong is the noisiest thing you’ll hear in this garden within a garden as you wander through a well-stocked garden store, past a gaudy jungle of indoor plants and along paths shaded by living trees, into a green world of wonder at Sunnyside Garden Centre, 1 Cromwell Street.

Sunnyside’s wide range includes annual seedlings, perennials, groundcove­rs and shrubs, small and large trees, roses and bulbs. Environmen­tally friendly products and water-wise plants come with sound advice.

A committed staff are creative with an eye for detail and have been trained by owner Malcolm Southey to match customers’ needs with particular species.

A qualified landscape technologi­st, Malcolm consults to garden owners and supplies the plants for a garden haven, or undertakes the entire project.

Businesses and institutio­ns are benefiting from Sunnyside’s burgeoning rental business in which potted plants are supplied, maintained weekly, and swapped if they start looking tired. Products include stone pavers, pots, chemicals, seeds and gardening equipment.

Once you’ve found your heart’s desire, a tea garden and restaurant offers breakfast, lunch and teatime menus under a shady pavilion looking on to the garden. A variety of quiches and baked goods is made fresh on the premises. A children’s play area caters for small people.

Imaginatio­n draws garden lovers to Sunnyside, who appreciate that it’s a holistic enterprise with environmen­tal awareness at its heart.

But dependabil­ity keeps them coming back.

“You have to be humble. You have to be a problem solver,” Malcolm says. “You need to provide a quality service instead selling products just to make money.” There’s one thing every gardener in Grahamstow­n has in common, Malcolm believes.

“From Joza’s garden patches to the suburbs’ sprawling lawns, greening a place brings so much joy to people’s lives.”

 ?? Photos: Sue Maclennan ?? (From left) owner Malcolm Southey with staff Ernest Cacela and Karin Cockburn.
Photos: Sue Maclennan (From left) owner Malcolm Southey with staff Ernest Cacela and Karin Cockburn.
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