Welcome to our new members, and Introductions

modjadje(Willamette Valley Zone 8)October 28, 2003

I am delighted to notice that we have several new posters posting and would like to say WELCOME !color=red>

We would love to hear about your garden, and which South African native plants and trees you grow ... and perhaps you have some growing or propagating tips to pass on?

For the benefit of our new members, I'll volunteer some info about myself to kick this off. I garden in competition with deer since our arrival a year ago here in southwestern Oregon, so all my plants are in large tubs on the deck. I've had to ship out to new homes my Clivias and Melianthus (kruidjie-roer-my-nie) because our winters are too cold. Two proteas in tubs had survived 5 years of USDA Zone 8 in the Sierra Foothills but here they succumbed when sudden cold set in end October to plummet temps to 14 degrees F for 4 nights in a row. Sad. The agapanthus survived and bloomed well this past summer, as did the Homeria, the Watsonias, and the Cape fuchsia (phygelius capensis). The nerines are sending up a few scapes now, they had been disturbed earlier this year and are sulking. Had nice bloom from the ixias, sparaxis, babiana, and schizostylus.

Perhaps in a few years, when i have more energy, I will start a real garden again inside a large fenced area. For now it's a pot garden for me.

That's it from me, I hope you will all jump in and tell a little about yourself. Delina

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Salvia_guy(z8 OR)

We're practically neighbors.....LOL

I'm in NW Oregon. I have several species of S.African salvias, many cultivars of Phygelius and a Melianthus comosus. I think that's it for S. African plants in my garden.


    Bookmark   November 17, 2003 at 12:46AM
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I garden in Zone 5/6 in CT butI have to admit I'm kind of limited to clivias. I have lots. And lots. LOL I just ordered the catalogue from the Kirstenbosch in at the National Botanical Garndens and I'm trying to get familiarized with more types of plants. I don't think there is going to be too much that will grow here outside though. I think I'll be sticking to pots for now. LOL.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2003 at 6:49PM
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veldblom(z7 NY)

I'm interested in all kinds of South African plants, having visited SA three times between 1984 and 1993. I grow a lot inside, (species pelargoniums and oxalis, and many others) and am very curious about what can survive outside here just north of New York City. So far among the toughest that have made it through several winters (last one was really bad) are Artemesia afra, Eucomis bicolor, Gladiolus papilio, an unidentified sedge (Mariscus sp), Phygelius aequalis, and Galtonia candicans. Some persist as resowing annuals, but plants occasionally survive a really mild winter like the one two years ago--these include a white/palest pink species of Nemesia collected from Verlaterkloof in the Cape by Panayoti Kelaidis of the Denver Botanic Garden, Senecio inaequidens (I brought it back from SA), and a Hebenstrieta collected by PK from Natal. Of course, things like Gazanias and Ceratotheca triloba make easy annuals in our climate. In the future I hope to get a larger place to garden in, so I could have at least one all SA native plant garden!
I've been a member of the Botanical Society of SA for years (highly recommended-a good source of seed and books) and have grown hundreds (maybe thousands) of different SA plants, mostly when I worked at a botanical garden (went back to teaching, more profitable).

    Bookmark   November 17, 2003 at 8:43PM
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cjhin(Gauteng ZA)

Hi frenchgirl2838

You may want to try plants from the Highveld area of SA, eg. the Witwatersrand (Johannesburg area) and the Drakensberg, where the plants are adapted to cold, frosty winters, probably equivalent to a zone 6. In the Drakensberg it often snows in winter. These areas have some really beautiful bulbous plants.

There is a new book out by Elsa Pooley on the wild flowers of the Kwazulu-Natal Drakensberg. I am not sure what the exact title is. There is also a book on plants of the Witwatersrand, "Field guide to the wild flowers of the Highveld" by Braam van Wyk & Sasa Malan. Another is "A field guide to the flora of the Natal Drakensberg" by
Donald Killick. You will find info on these books at www.nbi.ac.za in the publications section.

Silverhill Seeds (www.silverhillseeds.co.za) has a catalogue with the USDA zones included per species. Ask them to mail you the various catalogues they have. I have ordered seed from them and their service is excellent. I asked for 100 seeds of each and with fine seeds I got more like 1000 seeds. I would suggest ordering larger quantities of 100 at least since the seeds of most wild flowers germinate erratically and a germination success of 50% is considered good.

From a South African on the Highveld

    Bookmark   November 19, 2003 at 3:13AM
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Carletta(9 TX)

I think we all may have more South African plants in our gardens than we realize. I discovered anomatheca some years back because a lady in CA sent me seeds, and it bloomed for the first time last year. I have lots more seedlings now coming along. I didn't realize that oxalis is a SA plant; I have bulbine (which I think is sometimes known as bulbinella), and other things. What I'm looking for is a plant or seed of polygala x dalmaisiana. Someone posted about this on Gardening in Texas and I'd like to find it - I was so taken with the picture. I now go to bed at night and read the Silverhilld Seeds catalog and go from that back and forth to my A to Z Gardening Encyclopedia to see what I am reading about.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2003 at 10:23AM
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Thanks for that info. I have to admit...sheepishly... I did not know it snowed anywhere in South Africa. I knew it got cooler and there were definate seasonal changes, but I just didn't realize the temps. got that low. I've looked at Silverhill seeds recently and it looks like their site is more user friendly that it was last time. (I think it might have been my brower or something.) I'm going to take a closer look though. Thanks for the tip. I love my clivia though. It must be starting to get quite nice weather there right about now. It has been unseasonably warm the last week or so here in Connecticut but it seems to be getting cooler and more late fall like here. Sebrina

    Bookmark   November 24, 2003 at 8:37AM
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cjhin(Gauteng ZA)

Hi Sebrina

I think what I wrote above is not so clear. The highveld does not get as cold as a zone 6, probably more like a 8 or 9. What I meant to say was that some plants from the Highveld areas may survive in zone 6 areas. Use the Silverhill seeds catalogue as a guide. The catalogues can be downloaded from their site. Yes it does often snow in the higher lying areas of the Highveld particularly in the Drakensberg mountains. The mountain ranges in the Cape also often have snow. (There is even a snow resort in SA called Tiffendal). When that happens then we in Johanneburg know that we must prepare for a cold spell! But snow in Johannesburg is a rare occurrance. The last real snow we had here was around 1981. We did have black frost this last winter and some of my bushveld plants were damaged. However, all have survived and are recovering.

The weather is fantastic at this time of year. We get our typical thundershowers and it gets hot. Great time for a barbeque (or braai as we call it with boerewors (beef sausage) and pap (maize porridge) - this is in fact a national past-time in SA!) and swimming.


    Bookmark   November 25, 2003 at 3:15AM
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I live in western Washington. I collect pretty much anything from South Africa that will grow here without too much trouble. This would include Kniphofias, Phygelius, Zantedeschia, Melianthus, Thamnocalamus tesselatus, and I am sure there are a lot of other things but I am spacing out and can't think of them. I also have a lot of succulents in pots including Aloes, Delosperma, Malephora, Ruschia, Rhombophyllum, Raibea, Cotelydon, and lots of others. I used to have a large collection of Proteas but the only ones left are Leucadendron barkerae and Protea caffra which has got to be the easiest Protea. I will start more up when I have time to take care of them. I also have Cyathea dregei and would like to get hold of some spore or a plant of C. capensis.

Here is a link that might be useful: My plant photo gallery

    Bookmark   December 13, 2003 at 10:35PM
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Sowth Efrikan

Howzit, I'm a SowthEfrikan now living in a 7b zone of Texas. I'm no longer a newbie, having hung around on GW since spring.

Jinne, I never thought of the Drakensberg as the Highveld but just as a mountain range - does that mean the Vrystaat is also the Highveld? :) Clearly I needed to pay much more attention in Geography.

Joey's definitely has a more temperate climate than in this part of the world, my first year I was homesick and grew all kinds of SA stuff I had in my Joey's garden.

Having survived a pitiless summer they promptly vrekked from cold in winter. The extremes in temps are tutu much.

I tried again and now just about all the plants I bring indoors at night and out by day in winter are South African - Agapanthus, Red Hot Poker, Cape Plumbago and a monster Strelitizia from an incredibly generous fellow Gardenweber. If they survive this winter there may even be enough to start sharing next year, when I will be adding Clivia.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2003 at 7:29PM
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Hey, I'm so happy I scrolled down below Lilies on the forum list and found you.

I have two doors on 2x4 frames inside. Here I have clivias, lots of arums, crocrosmias, red hot pokers. Think that the red hot pokers will cope with the cold but don't dare try. Sad to say that I did have some watsonia seedlings growing well but plant sitter killed them about 2 years ago. Think I left them in too small pots and they were totally overwatered for a month. Haven't found any more seed anywhere, that is why I want to join Kirstenbosch.
Oh yes, have nerine seedlings which should bloom next summer, and some aloes.

Do you have a seed swop/purchse here as well? Now I'm off to look at Silverhill.

Thats it.

Rest of my doors are full of non-ZA plants, just because I can't find any.

Alles van die beste,
Ginny in Libau, Manitoba

    Bookmark   December 30, 2003 at 12:21PM
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modjadje(Willamette Valley Zone 8)

Baie welkom by ons forum! I sent you an email, I have Watsonias in my garden and can save you some seeds next summer.

    Bookmark   December 30, 2003 at 11:33PM
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bahia(SF Bay Area)

Those interested in South African plants might want to keep posted with the soon to open mail order business(probably in February, 2004), of a local northern California retail nursery, Annie's Annuals in Richmond. Annie has been growing quite abit of South African stuff, from trees, shrubs, succulents, perennials, bulbs to annuals. I have picked up some interesting things, and was surprised to see Cunonia and Cussonia seedling trees, and Strelitzia reginae 'Mandela's Gold' on my last visit to the nursery. I also wish I had snapped up some of the Mimetes cucullatus last year when she had a crop of this. It is worth checking out her web site to see if she has anything of interest, and she is also open weekends starting January for people close enough to get to Richmond, Ca. in the East Bay.

It may surprise people to know that some of the South African annuals from Namaqualand are already in explosive full bloom at the nursery, such as Ursinia anthemoides which is as cheery orange as our native California poppy. I am not one of the owners, but have bought alot of plants from Annie over the years for my own landscape design business. I thought Annie's might be a good source for USA residents wanting a mailorder source of live plants. She also grows things from other mediterranean climates in particular, so it is not just South African natives. Go to www.anniesannuals.com for hours of operation, dates open, special events, and directions to the nursery and intended start date of the mail order business.

Lots of South African plants are looking good/or blooming here in the San Francisco Bay Area. Several Aloes are already blooming, such as A. arborescens, A. marlothii, A. x spinossismus, A. thraskii and buds on A. saponaria and A. striata. Several Plectranthus species have never quit blooming here, such as the pale lavender shrubby P. zuluensis and the dwarf pungent ground cover P. neochilus, with deep showy purple flowers for sun or shade and very little summer water. I also have several Proteas blooming in the garden such as the hybrid P. 'Pink Ice', Leucodendron salignum cultivars and a Leucospermum 'Tango' which is budding up nicely. Up at the UC Berkeley Botanic Garden, a was amazed to see a rather short Highveld Cabbage Tree/Cussonia paniculata only 4 feet tall coming into bloom. I also have remnant blooms on the Nerine bowdenii and Hyposestes aristata in the garden, as well as Clivia nobilis. A couple of South African bulbs blooming at present include the beautiful blue Moraea polystachya, Anomatheca laxa, the lovely evergreen with deep red flowers, Tritaniopsis caffra, and the first of the Chasmanthe floribunda 'Duckittiae', as well as flowers on the Bulbine frutescens and B. f. 'Hallmark'-the orange flowered cultivar.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2003 at 3:44PM
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Hello friends, I am Henry, I want to collect information of plants. i had just joined this forum. Thank you.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2011 at 6:25AM
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hi, this is khabbab from Pakistan. I garden in hot plains of lahore. I have very small soil bed in which i am growing sparaxis, freesia, agapanthus, nerine bowd., daylily bulbs, zephyranthus all three colors. Because ours is a hot climate, most australian and south african species suit my climate.

I am growing lots of flowering vines in containers on my terrace as well including jasmines, stephanotis floribunda, wisteria ch., vigna carc., allamanada c. and few others. I love growing from seed and trying to grow many other vines from seed. I write my own blog on gardening as well.

hope to have fun here on this forum.


    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 11:41AM
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