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western cape, South Africa Za

Hi there. I really want some ideas what to do with my garden? I want a tropical garden but dont have enough shade.. I also dont want to plant to high trees because i dont want to loose my view. Ive got some photos to give you an idea of what i have. I also need something to block the wind.. its a sideways wind and it blows very strong so i cant plant anything i want because the wind just destroys it.. it even blows the water out of my water features. How can i fix this as natural as posable? I dont like artificial stuff in my garden. I also saw the secret garden on the net and i really want to incorporate one in my garden. But ive got limited space? help?



Wow, that's a big ask! We'll try, between us. I think we ought to use your garden as an experiment. Appreciate you're miles away from many of us, but all knowledge is good. Don't know what others think. Approach each stage as a separate entity, and deal with it. Could serve as a useful example and teaching aid. To start with, let's sort out the wind problem, as it were! Suggest a couple of palms, trachycarpus, and some lower varieties to plug the gaps. Let's open the floor to some responses. Worthy

13 Jan, 2011


Welcome, Gibbster!
From the looks of what you and your neighbors have, your climate involves mild winters, and dry, warm summers, mostly staying below 38ยบ C. There are a number of tropical-appearing plants that should take full sun in an area like that:

Canna (Canna x generalis), Natal Plum (Carissa macrocarpa), most of the Hibiscus (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis), Elephant's Ear (Colocasia esculenta varieties), "Tree" Philodendron (Philodendron selloum), Brazilian Plumeflower (Justicia carnea), Southern Magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora)....

Hmm....I'm running out of time to make a full list! I'll jog my memory, and get back to you with a more complete palette. A few strategically placed small trees can provide areas with afternoon shade, and expand the palette even more, without blocking the view.

13 Jan, 2011


Welcome Gibbster, you've got some lovely pics on here. I don't think there's a total answer to the problem of how to have shelter from the wind and sun, while keeping the view, but by planting some small trees lower down you'd be able to provide some more shelter while keeping the view higher up. Tugbrethil's an expert on what will grow where you are.
The shelter / view dilemma's always going to be a compromise as you can't have lots of both together unless you erected glass screens. Reinvented the window, in other words! :-)

13 Jan, 2011


Wow. Thanx alot you guys!! I really appreciate all your help so far.. I wil definately look into the plant list that Tugbrethil's given me. I can find most of the plants on the farm where I live and go buy the rest at the local nursery.. I will take some more photos and post it as soon as I can. Ive still got a blanc backyard that needs a garden.. Havent done anything there exept trying to keep it clean. Im living right next door to a nature reserve so it keeps trying to reclaim my small piece of yard...

13 Jan, 2011


Hello and welcome from me Gibbster, Great looking place you have there. A good place to start is to look at what others in your area have grown, Also are there any gardens open to the public that you can look around to see what grows well, such as dry and wind tolerant plants. Another idea is to join a garden club locally if you have one. Have you contacted the reserve to see if they have any help/support for their neighbours?

14 Jan, 2011


Please don't use glass or mirrors as so many birds kill themselves flying into them.
Your garden looks like a lovely challenge!

14 Jan, 2011

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