Bersama lucens is a fairly hardy, evergreen, small, compact tree with a well-developed crown and beautiful blotchy, wrinkled, grey bark.
The young leaves are a brilliant glossy russet brown, turning dark green when mature.
The small greenish white flowers, in long narrow heads, appear from September to June and are followed by green capsules that split to reveal scarlet seeds that attract birds.
The bark is sought after in traditional medicine and this species is becoming increasingly rare.
It is a beautiful, decorative tree for a shady to semi-shady part of the garden.
Cunonia capensis is a hardy, evergreen, fast growing, small to medium sized tree.
The beautiful compound leaves have red petioles and large, red, spoon-shaped stipules that give the tree an overall reddish look and make this a beautiful foliage plant.
It blooms profusely with white, sweetly scented, upright ‘bottlebrush’ flowers from February to May that attract a myriad of insects and butterflies. The fruit attracts birds to the garden.
A handsome tree and good garden subject, which needs a cool, moist area.
Curtisia dentata is a medium-sized, hardy, evergreen tree that can grow quite large in moist forested areas.
Cussonia spicata is a fast growing, mostly evergreen, fairly hardy, decorative tree with attractive corky bark that makes a lovely form plant.
The large bright green leaves are crowded at the tips of the branches.
Small greenish flowers are borne on robust erect candle-like spikes from April to June.
Deinbollia oblongifolia is a hardy, briefly deciduous, shrub or small tree with large decorative, dark green leaves crowded at the ends of the branches.
The pyramids of white flowers, which stand out above the leaves, are borne from March to June and are followed by white, fruit that is much favoured by birds.
Lichens readily grow on the bark giving it a lovely mottled effect.
One of the best plants for attracting butterflies, moths, other insects and birds to the garden.
An attractive garden plant for shady areas that also makes a good container plant for indoors.
Traditionally the seeds are used to make soap, the leaves eaten as spinach and the roots used medicinally.
Diospyros whyteana is a large, hardy, very decorative, evergreen shrub or small tree with glossy, almost mirror-like, dark green leaves.
The clusters of small, fragrant, bell-like white flowers are borne from July to October The fruits are red when ripe, enclosed by bladder-like structures.
Heteropyxis canescens is a rare, hardy, small, semi-deciduous tree that occurs in forested ravines and riverine forests in a restricted area of Mpumalanga and Swaziland.
It has beautiful, sparkling, beige bark that flakes off in patches leaving attractive blotches.
The quite large, decorative leaves have interesting venation and smell of lavender when crushed.
Heteropyxis natalensis is a hardy, slender, upright, narrow, semi-deciduous tree with truly beautiful, pale creamy bark that, with age, develops beautiful apricot coloured patches on it.
Indigofera frutescens is a hardy, semi-deciduous, graceful, small tree with delicate compound leaves and attractive bark.
Mimusops caffra is a hardy, medium-sized to large, evergreen tree with a dense neat crown of attractive grey-green leaves.
This tree tolerates heavy salt spray and this same mechanism allows it to tolerate quite a lot of frost even though it is a plant of the dune forest.
It bears creamy white flowers from September to December which attract, bees, carpenter bees and sunbirds.
Noltea africana is a very hardy, evergreen, very fast growing, small to medium sized tree.
The glossy leaves are darker above and paler underneath, and have purple petioles. The branchlets are also purplish-red.
The flowers are pretty, small, white sprays borne in the axils of the leaves from August to September. The black seeds are encased in a three-lobed, brown woody capsule that splits to release them when ripe.
A decorative tree that is ideal for the smaller garden but should be kept as a single stem.
Grows well in sun and semi-shade.
Ochna natalitia is a hardy, semi-deciduous, large shrub with glossy leaves that flush red in spring.
Olinia emarginata is a very frost-hardy, evergreen small to medium sized tree that can grow into a huge tree in forest situations.
Pittosporum viridiflorum is a very hardy, evergreen, small to medium-sized, well-shaped tree with glossy leaves that have a resinous smell when crushed.
The bark has small pits in it and is an attractive feature of this tree. It is grey in young trees and becomes darker, rough and slightly fissured in mature specimens, and smells slightly of liquorice.
The dense clusters of sweetly scented, cream flowers are borne from September to November and are followed by brilliant red, sticky fruit in yellow-green capsules, that attracts birds.
A beautiful garden tree, which can be grown in sun or semi-shade, and can be used in forest and bush clumps as well as being used as a hedge plant. Wonderful shade tree, and with its non-aggressive root system is ideal for small gardens and containers.
Size 3 to 10m
Podocarpus elongatus is the smallest of the Yellowwood trees and is very hardy and evergreen.
It has attractive narrow, blue-green leaves and is slow growing.
The female cones develop into fleshy, bright red, edible fruits with 1 or 2 seeds that mature rapidly.
Podocarpus falcatus is a large, very hardy, evergreen forest tree. It is the fastest growing of the Yellowwoods.
The small leathery, narrow, dark green leaves are sometimes slightly sickle-shaped.They often have a greyish bloom to them, making this a beautiful foliage tree, particularly when the light catches the leaves and the grey-green forms "highlights" on parts of the canopy.
Mature trees have beautiful, dark purplish-brown and flaking bark.
Portulacaria afra is a hardy, evergreen, neatly shaped, small tree or shrub with pretty round, succulent leaves and ruby red branches.
The leaves have a pleasant acid flavour and can be used in salads.
From October to January, after rain, it is covered in clear pink to rosy mauve, nectar rich flowers - a wonderful sight. The papery 3-winged ornamental fruits resemble pinkish lanterns.
Plant in well-drained soil in sun or shade.
Useful for binding soil.
Schotia afra is a hardy, small, much branched, gnarled, evergreen small tree with characterful twisted, pale branches and a charcoal grey trunk.
Sideroxylon inerme is a hardy, evergreen, small to medium or large tree with a beautiful, round, dark-green, lush crown. A feature of this tree is the grey-brown bark that cracks into rectangles. The leathery, dark-green leaves are smooth and shiny and turn red with age.
From November to April it bears small greenish-white, strongly-scented flowers which Mousebirds love to eat. The flowers are followed by attractive, juicy, black berries that attract birds and other wildlife to the garden.
This species has been declared a protected tree and some old specimens are National Monuments. It has many traditional and medicinal uses.
The White Milkwood makes a good garden and container subject, and grows well on the Highveld in sun or semi-shade if protected from wind.
Size: 4 to 15m
Tabernaemontana elegans is a hardy, deciduous, upright small tree that has beautiful, large, shiny, dark green leaves and a lovely rounded shape.
The clusters of beautiful white flowers are sweetly scented and borne from October to February and attract bees to the garden.
These are followed by interesting, large, paired fruits with raised, corky dots like the skin of a toad, hence the common name. These lovely fruits split to reveal seeds covered with bright orange pulp.
Vepris lanceolata is a hardy, evergreen, very attractive tree with apple green foliage.
Acokanthera oppositifolia ia a hardy, evergreen, drought-resistant, medium to large upright, woody, shrub with brown, deeply fissured bark on the old wood.
Bauhinia tomentosa is a hardy, fast growing, drought resistant, deciduous, scandent shrub with deeply lobed leaves, like butterfly wings.
It bears masses of lemon yellow, bell-like flowers with a purple blotch at the base of one petal and flowers throughout summer.
Plant in full sun or partial shade.
Buddleja auriculata is a very hardy, beautiful, evergreen shrub with a weeping habit and beautiful black-green glossy leaves that are white on the underside.
It bears fragrant lilac and white flowers with an orange centre and flowers profusely in large sprays in July and August.
It can be planted as a specimen but needs some pruning to keep it in shape.
Carissa edulis is a hardy, much-branched, evergreen, fast growing shrub or climber that has glossy, leathery leaves, which are sometimes hairy and have red growing tips. The hard rigid spines are almost always single.
Masses of beautiful, white flowers tinged with pink appear from September to December. These are followed by edible fruit that turns purplish-black when ripe, and because it is so sweet and juicy, makes a good jam or jelly.
The fruits attract birds to the garden.
It makes a good hedging plant, whether pruned to keep compact or left to grow freely. It needs to be controlled in a smaller garden but can be allowed to grow wild if you have the space where it will scramble through the trees.
Can be grown in semi-shade, but prefers full sun and flowers more profusely in the sun.
Size 1 to 3m
Rotheca myricoides (= Clerodendrum myricoides) is a fairly hardy, medium sized, evergreen, very decorative shrub with beautiful foliage.
It has massed spikes of purple flowers in spring and summer which attract the beautiful Carpenter Bees.
The edible fruit attracts birds to the garden.
Dracaena aletriformis is a fairly hardy, evergreen, shade loving, Yucca-like accent plant.
Freylinia tropica "Blue" is a very hardy, evergreen, slender shrub that has spreading branches, smooth grey bark and shiny, bright green leaves.
It blooms profusely in late winter when little else is flowering but does bear some bright blue flowers throughout the year.
It makes a good screen plant and can be clipped into a formal hedge or used in an informal hedge. It also makes a beautiful container plant.
It grows in sun or semi-shade.
Attracts insects and butterflies to the garden.
Size 1 to 3m
Halleria elliptica is a hardy evergreen shrub, with very showy, orange-red, broadly tubular flowers in summer and winter.
The olive green foliage turns purple in winter which contrasts beautifully with the orange-red flowers.
Lippia javanica is a very hardy, evergreen, erect, small shrub with aromatic leaves.
Ochna serrulata is a hardy, small, semi-deciduous shrub with glossy, mirror-like leaves that flush red in spring.
The profuse, bright yellow, scented flowers are borne from September to December.
The flowers are short lived but are followed by black fruit on an enlarged red calyx that looks like a flower and persists on the shrub for months.
As with Ochna natalitia this plant deserves pride of place in any garden. The seeds attract birds to the garden.
Ruttya fruticosa is a fairly hardy, evergreen, beautiful rounded shrub with glossy dark green foliage.
It bears unusual, exceptionally attractive two-lipped tubular orange or yellow flowers that have a shiny black in the throat.
It blooms from spring to late summer and attracts bees, birds and butterflies.
Plant in compost rich soil – it also tolerates slightly acidic soil.
Prune back after flowering to keep in shape.
Strelitzia reginae is a hardy, evergreen shrub with large, ornamental, banana-like leaves.
The brilliant orange and shimmering peacock-blue flowers have an interesting structure resembling an exotic bird and flower from May to Dec. The nectar attracts sunbirds while the black seeds with an orange aril attracts many seed eating birds to the garden.
The blade-shaped leaves and flowers are widely used for flower arranging. This beautiful shrub makes a stunning accent and container plant.
On the Highveld and in other dry regions it grows best in partial shade.
Size 1 to 1.75m
Agapanthus praecox white is a well-known hardy, evergreen plant that has attractive strap-like leaves and umbels of white flowers that are borne on long stalks from December to April.
They make good cut flowers.
Begonia dregei is a hardy, deciduous perennial with glossy, beautiful, small semi- succulent leaves that have white spots at times.
It bears masses of white flowers throughout the summer.
Chlorophytum modestum is a hardy, small, evergreen, perennial with short, strap-like leaves that form a tiny rosette.
Diascia genta hybrid is a hardy, bushy, evergreen, drought resistant, perennial groundcover with fine round leaves.
This hybrid has massed spikes of flowers ranging in colour from white, pink, orange through red.
The flowers are borne mainly from August. to March. but it does bear some flowers all year round.
Macledium (=Dicoma) zeyheri is a very hardy, unusual perennial plant with leathery leaves that are white felted below and cobwebby stems.
It bears purplish flowers with spiky silver bracts that are also tinged with purple and look like miniature Proteas from January to May. They are long lasting and make good cut flowers.
The seeds are much favoured by insects.
Plant in a rockery or in a grassland garden. For an unusual talking point, plant in containers.
Plant in well-drained, compost rich soil in sun or semi shade and water well in summer.
Size 15 to 20cm
Eriocephalus africanus is a hardy, attractive, fast growing evergreen, aromatic, small shrub, with fine, soft, grey, heavily scented leaves.
It flowers from autumn to winter with white, daisy-like flowers that have a purple centre and are followed by attractive, white, woolly seed heads.
Plant in a well-drained, sunny position and ensure it is well watered.
Gazania gazoo fire mix is a hardy, evergreen, drought resistant, sun loving groundcovers with glossy leaves.
This vigorous Gazania produces extremely large flowers on strong stems in spring and summer.
Haplocarpha scaposa is a very hardy, fast growing, deciduous perennial plant with a basal rosette of attractive large, grey-green leaves that have white woolly undersides.
In its first season it starts to bear large yellow flowers on long stalks resembling the well-known Barberton Daisy.
It blooms from September to March (remove the old flower stems before they seed).
It attracts insects to the garden.
Helichrysum petiolare is a hardy, evergreen, dense, very fast growing perennial with beautiful, silvery-grey velvety, rounded, aromatic leaves. A lovely foliage and textural plant.
It has cream flowers from November to January which can be used in dry arrangements.
The lovely grey colour of the foliage adds colour and texture to a mixed border.
It can also be pruned into a small hedge.
The leaves are used as bedding hence the common name. Campers believe the smell aids a peaceful nights sleep.
Needs to be pruned regularly to keep in shape.
A good plant in sun or semi-shade in larger gardens in well-drained soil.
Size 30 to 50cm
Hypoestes aristata white is a hardy, evergreen, small to medium sized, rounded shrub with grey-green leaves that have lighter veins giving them a variegated look.
It bears abundant spikes of 2-lipped white flowers in the middle of winter, from March to August, when very little else is in flower.
The flowers attract butterflies and other insects to the garden which is a boon to the insect eating birds.
Monopsis unidentata is a fairly hardy, fast growing, dainty, evergreen groundcover with tiny leaves. It bears masses of delicate, deep purple flowers almost all year round. It prefers sunny damp spots and is pretty growing with smaller grasses such as Eragrostis capensis (Small Heart Seed Grass).
The flowers attract insects to the garden. It grows in sun or semi-shade and is attractive planted around ponds, along borders and in hanging baskets. It is at its best in an irrigated garden and requires regular feeding to keep it looking its best.
Size 10 to 15cm
Plectranthus ciliatus is an outstanding fairly hardy, evergreen groundcover with attractive quilted leaves that have purple undersides and purple stems.
It has spikes of white or mauve flowers from September to May, that attract insects and butterflies to the garden.
Plectranthus madagascariensis aliciae is a fairly hardy, evergreen, semi-succulent, aromatic, herbaceous plant that has attractive, variegated leaves with white margins which are carried on long trailing stems.
It bears white, mauve or purple flowers from February to November. A useful groundcover in semi-shade or shade. It makes an attractive hanging basket.
It attracts insects and butterflies and therefore also birds to the garden.
Prune back after flowering. Plant in semi-shade or shade in well-drained, well composted soil.
Used in traditional medicine.
Size Up to 40cm
Scabiosa columbaria "Butterfly Pink" is a hardy, evergreen, soft, clump-forming, herbaceous perennial with attractive, deeply-lobed, grey-green foliage.
This hybrid, free-flowering perennial has large, showy, pink flowers carried on slender erect stems all year round.
Zantedeschia aethiopica is a very hardy, evergreen, clump-forming perennial with big, heart-shaped leaves.
The Arum Lily inflorescence has one distinctive large, white, cone-shaped petal and a central column which carries the tiny flowers and the yellow pollen.
Albuca nelsonii is a very hardy, robust, evergreen, clump forming bulb with strap-like, bright green leaves.
Bowiea volubilis is a hardy, deciduous, bulbous plant that has two thin, strap-like leaves.
It climbs by means of its large much-branched inflorescence, the branchlets of which grow downwards.
Clivia gardenii is a hardy, fairly slow growing perennial with dark, strap-shaped leaves.
It sends out side shoots to form quite large clumps.
Crinum macowanii is a very hardy, deciduous, large bulbous plant with long strap-like leaves that have undulating margins and can reach up to 1 metre.
It bears a head of spectacular, huge trumpet-like flowers that are sweetly scented from October to February.
Cyrtanthus mackenii is a hardy, evergreen bulbous plant has attractive glossy, dark green, narrow, strap-like leaves.
It bears umbels of narrow tubular flowers, in profusion, from July to February. in a variety of colours ranging from white and yellow to pink and even red.
It prefers semi-shade and moist, compost rich soil.
It is a beautiful addition to any garden, and makes a wonderful container subject.
Gladiolus crassifolius is a very hardy, deciduous, bulbous plant with erect, robust leaves that have a yellow midrib and margin and are carried in a fan (crassifolius = thick-leaved).
The tall spikes of flowers are borne mainly in spring and summer. The flower colour is very variable, but they all have a dark blotch in the throat.
This is a particularly beautiful plant for a grassland garden with its rigid flowers held up above the waving grasses. The insects that visit the flowers attract birds to the garden.
Used in traditional medicine.
Plant in compost-rich soil in sun or light shade.
Size: up to 75cm
Gloriosa superba is a hardy, deciduous, trailing or scrambling plant with shiny light green leaves that taper to tendrils at the tips, which help it to climb.
It grows from a ‘U’ shaped tuber that is deeply buried.
Tulbaghia violacea is a very hardy, evergreen, tuft forming bulbous plant, with semi-succulent, strap-like, grey-green leaves that are garlic scented when bruised.
Long stalks carrying umbels of delicate lilac to pink flowers are borne mainly from January to April. It will however bloom on and off almost all year in cultivation.
The flowers are sweetly scented at night and make excellent cut flowers. Use in the garden as a companion plant, particularly to deter aphids.
When sitting outside whack some of the leaves on your table or chair and this will deter flies and mosquitoes.
Used medicinally. It can also be used as a garlic substitute in salads, soups and stews. The flowers are a decorative addition to a salad.
An excellent groundcover for difficult areas as it can thrive in very poor soils and with very little watering.
Aristada junciformis is a handsome, very hardy, thick tufted grass with copious wispy seed heads that sway beautifully in the wind.
The seeds persist on the plant for an extended period from November. to May, and the culms are slow to yellow with the onset of winter, making this a good landscape grass.
A particularly good species for providing habitat for Vlei Rats and other grassland or wetland wildlife. Will grow well in wet, clay soil, as well as under normal garden conditions.
It is also well utilized in the making of brooms.
Size up to 60cm
Anthericum saundersiae is a hardy, evergreen, clump forming, grass-like perennial that bears sprays of white flowers and seeds all year round.
It grows in sun or shade and this makes it a good plant for the difficult areas that are in shade for part of the year.
Aloe ciliaris is a hardy, climbing Aloe with stems climbing up to 5m if they are supported, but otherwise makes a lovely, clump forming sprawling shrub.
The leaves are in loose rosettes around the stem and fringed with white hairs.
Aloe cryptopoda wickensii is a hardy Aloe that has a single, large stemless, densely packed rosette of grey-green succulent leaves.
The flowers are variable and may be red, yellow or bi-coloured, with yellow and red flowers. Depending on conditions, flowering time can vary between May and July.
This popular, easy garden plant provides a spectacular display when in full flower.
Aloe fosteri is a hardy, stemless Aloe with leaves that have a grey, powdery surface and white, almost “H-shaped” markings on the upper surface.
The blue-grey, branched flowering stalk bears brightly-coloured flowers, varying from yellow to orange and even scarlet.
Jasminum multipartitum is a very hardy, evergreen, fast-growing creeper or scrambler with small, glossy, dark-green foliage.
It bears masses of fragrant, white (with deep pink undersides), star-shaped flowers, from August to January.
Jasminum stenolobum is a hardy, evergreen, scandent, bushy shrub or climber, with glossy, dark-green leaves.
Masses of large, fragrant, white, star-shaped flowers with a pink underside are borne from August to January.
Boophane disticha is a very, hardy, deciduous plant with a huge bulb. In warm areas the bulb is held above the soil while in colder areas it is kept below ground level as a protection against frost.
The grey-leaves are held in a twisted fan shape and are most attractive. (the species name disticha means in 2 rows, referring to the leaves).
The large deep pink to red flower head appears in early spring before the leaves. Fire induces this plant to flower. Once the flowers have been pollinated each flower stalk elongates and carries the seed on the end to form a tumbleweed. This is the plants strategy for distributing its seeds.
Plant in full sun or semi-shade with an exposed bulb.
Extensively used in traditional medicine but with caution as it is poisonous.
Pelargonium acetosum is a hardy, evergreen, bushy but sometimes straggling ground cover with semi-succulent bright green leaves that are edged in red.
The gorgeous, brilliant, satiny- pink flowers vary from coral pink to almost white. There are two to seven flowers per stalk, and this groundcover bears flowers almost all year round.
The young leaves and buds are edible and have an acidic taste.
Size 20 to 60 cm
Scilla natalensis is a very hardy, deciduous, bulbous plant with a basal rosette of attractive, broad, grey-green leaves.
The long flowering spikes carry flowers in shades of misty blue and are borne from September to December.
Plant in full sun or light shade, either solitary as a form plant or in clumps to make a show when flowering. Bulbs should be planted half above the ground.
It is ideal for rockeries and is a lovely container plant. Makes a wonderful display when planted with Bulbine natalensis that flowers at the same time with yellow flower spikes.
One of our most important medicinal plants.
Size 30 to 40cm
Stachys aethiopica is a hardy, evergreen, spreading groundcover with beautiful pale green almost quilted leaves.
It bears spikes of small, white tubular flowers mainly in spring but with a few flowers almost all year round. They attract a myriad of tiny insects to the garden which provide food for lizards and frogs.
An attractive groundcover that grows in both sun and shade. Prune lightly and regularly to keep in shape. As this is a widespread species it is variable and the form that we grow is not rampant but rather stays in neat little clusters. Plant in well-drained soil in hanging baskets, along borders or in containers.
Size 25 to 35cm
Pelargonium sidoides is a hardy, evergreen (in culitvation) perennial that has thickened underground root-like branches. These are an adaptation to surviving grassland fires. The leaves are somewhat "frilly" and a beautiful grey-green. They are faintly aromatic and are arranged in a rosette.
The beautiful maroon flowers are borne mostly in spring, and are very decorative.
Can easily be propagated from cuttings. Plant in full sun, and in composted, well-drained soil. Makes a great container plant.
Size up to 20cm
Isolepis cernua is an evergreen, wide-spread, fountain-like, bright green, little flowering sedge that has silvery flower heads on the tips of long stems that make it look like a spray of fibre-optic threads.
Although frost hardy, it requires damp growing conditions. It grows in marshy areas, so needs plenty of water, and will be at its best at the edge of a water feature or in a container that will hold moisture.
Plant in full sun to light shade.
Streptocarpus formosus is a hardy, evergreen perennial with clumps of long, quilted, strap shaped leaves that are arranged in a basal rosette.
It bears one or two large, purple, trumpet-shaped flowers that have dark purple streaks and are carried at the tips of long, delicate flowering stems from late spring to early autumn. The name "Streptocarpus" refers the the twisted fruiting bodies / seed capsules ("Strepto" meaning twisted and "karpos" meaning fruit). As they mature and dry out, they twist to realease the tiny seeds.
This beautiful plant grows naturally in forest that are hot and humid in summer and warm and dry in winter. Water thoroughly only when the plants are dry. Water less during winter. Streptocarpus should rather be under watered than over watered.
Plant in a well-composted medium with good drainage in a shady position, where the soil is moist, rather than wet.
Looks beautiful planted alongside a shady pond or in containers.
Size: up to 15cm tall
Salvia namaensis is a perennial, evergreen small shrub that is both drought and frost hardy.
It has fine, dissected little leaves that are lime green, tough and aromatic. They, as well as the young branches are covered in tiny little hairs. Young branches are reddish purple.
The small white to pale mauve flowers are borne in spring and summer. Many insects including bees and butterflies are attracted to the flowers.
Plant in full sun, in well composted, well drained soil. Lovely contrasting foliage for bold-leaved plants with the same growing conditions. Makes a good container plant, but prune fairly regularly.
Size to about 1m
Plectranthus oertendahlii is an evergreen, clump forming groundcover that spreads along the forest floor. Wherever its soft stems touch the ground they root.
The leaves are slightly succulent and beautifully variegated green with silvery white markings along their vein and midrib lines. They are reddish maroon underneath.
The delicate white flowers are borne in spikes from February to June, with most flowers appearing in April and May.
A most worthwhile plant for shady areas and makes a spectacular pot plant.
Plant in loamy, well-composted soil and water regularly.
Size up to 20cm
Gardenia cornuta is a small, evergreen, decorative tree. It is multi-stemmed with grey-green mottled bark on erect, stiff branches.
The leaves are clustered at the ends of the hard twigs, and are shiny light green with wavy margins.
Scented, star-like white flowers adorn the tree from December to March, making it a sight to behold. They fade to creamy yellow as they get older.
These are followed by oval woody fruit that turn yellow. The fruit is eaten by monkeys when it is young, and nyala also relish the fruit.
Plant in a spot that is protected from frost, in sun or very light, dappled shade.
Size up to 5m
Petalidium oblongifolium is a very hardy, evergreen, drought resistant small shrub with firm, broadly lanceolate silver-grey leaves that point upwards.
It bears attractive blue flowers on and off all year round.
Scadoxus puniceus is a very hardy, deciduous, beautiful, bulbous plant that varies hugely in size, depending on where it comes from. The large, glossy leaves have wavy margins and are speckled at the base.
It bears a large inflorescence of red, powder-puff-like flowers on a long stem, which appears before the leaves, from July to October.
This form of Scadoxus puniceus is much taller, more robust and has larger flowers with a less intense red colour than our Highveld form.
It is a very hardy, deciduous, beautiful, bulbous plant that varies hugely in size, depending on where it comes from.
Crassula multicava is a hardy, evergreen, mat-forming, broad-leaved succulent plant.
It bears many sprays of dainty, star-shaped, pink flowers from May to November that attract a whole host of tiny insects.
Crassula multicava 'Purple' is a hardy, evergreen, mat-forming, broad-leaved succulent plant. The leaves are purple on the underside, making this an attractive, colourful plant all year round, even when not in flower.
From May to November it bears many sprays of dainty, star-shaped, pink flowers that attract a whole host of tiny insects.
Pelargonium ionidiflorum is a very hardy, evergreen, drought-resistant perennial with beautiful, incised leaves.
It bears clusters of gorgeous, violet-pink flowers with wine-red markings all year round.
Polygala fruticosa "Petite" is a hardy, evergreen, shrublet that has shiny, grey-green, heart-shaped leaves that have red margins. The young leaves are a shiny, coppery pink.
The clusters of gorgeous, magenta, pea-shaped flowers appear from August to May and attract bees and other pollinating insects to the garden.
This beautiful plant is great in a mixed border, rockeries, Terraforce walls or containers. Used in traditional medicine.
Plant in compost-rich soil in full sun or semi-shade and water well when planting and until settled. Thereafter it will tolerate quite dry conditions.
Hypericum revolutum is a hardy, evergreen, medium-sized to large, fast-growing, moisture-loving shrub with reddish-brown, scaly bark.
Polygala myrtifolia "Riviersonderend" is a miniature form of the well-known Polygala myrtifolia.
Cotula sericea is a hardy, evergreen, fast-growing, flat, sprawling groundcover with really beautiful, grey-green leaves that have fine hairs that give this plant a soft silky texture.
The single, bright-yellow, button-like flowers are carried on long stems above the leaves.
Drosanthemum hispidum is a hardy, evergreen, small succulent with small, elongated, fleshy, beautiful, glittery leaves.
Aloe brevifolia is a fairly hardy, dwarf Aloe with dense rosettes of broad, triangular and distinctly grey-green leaves which form clumps.
It bears cone shaped spikes of flowers in shades of red and yellow during October and November.
It is restricted to the Western Cape which has winter rainfall therefore this Aloe should be kept dry in summer.
Nerine laticoma is a very hardy, deciduous, bulbous plant with a tuft of broad, glossy, strap-shaped leaves and quite a large bulb.
From January to March, each bulb sends up a long, flowering stem that has a rounded head of absolutely beautiful pink flowers that attract pollinating insects.
Eucomis zambeziaca is a hardy, deciduous, rare, bulbous plant that has a rosette of attractive, broad, strap-like leaves with wavy margins.
During summer, it bears cylindrical spikes of glossy, white flowers with a tuft of green leaves on top, similar to a pineapple.
Aloe aristata is a very hardy, dwarf, stemless Aloe.
Themeda triandra is a very hardy, evergreen, tall, tufted grass with foliage in many shades of green that turn reddish when older.
The pendulous, purple-red flower spikes are most attractive from September to June. The seeds that follow are also a beautiful feature of this grass.
In nature, the presence of this grass signifies climax grassland that is in good condition.
Aloe peglerae is a very hardy, slow-growing, beautiful Aloe that occurs only on the Witwatersrand and Magaliesburg, but due to fires and the loss of habitat. It is now critically threatened.It has grey-green, toothed leaves that curve inwards making it look like a ball.
It blooms in July and August bearing spikes of dull-red and yellow flowers with purple stamens.They are densely-packed, very large and robust.Bees and other insects are irresistibly attracted to the pollen and nectar of the flowers.
It requires minimal water as it normally grows on rocky ledges.Plant in amongst rocks or in very porous containers.
It requires well-drained soil and full sun.Keep dry in winter.
size: 40 m
Aloe petricola is a fairly hardy, stemless Aloe with a grey-green rosette of long leaves that narrow to a fine tip and have margins with sharp-brown teeth.They curve inwards giving the plant a rounded look.
The inflorescence is densely packed with bicoloured flowers that are red or orange when in bud and open progressively into greenish-white flowers.There is another form that has orange buds and yellow flowers. Flowering time is in July and August.Adequate water in summer will ensure good flowering in winter.The flowers attract birds and a myriad of insects which, in turn, provide food for lizards and toads in the garden.Plant in groups for a magnificent show in winter.
This plant looks gorgeous planted amongst rocks in the garden.
It will grow in shallow soil provided it is well-drained and well-composted.It requires full sun.
Size: 45 to 60 cm
Cotyledon orbiculata (var. flanaganii) is a hardy, evergreen, drought-resistant, stemless, succulent groundcover is the Karoo form of Cotyledon orbiculata and has finger-like leaves that are edged with red.
The umbels of pendulous, apricot-coloured flowers grow on long stalks and are borne in mid-summer.The flowers attract insects and Sunbirds to the garden.
This versatile plant looks great in containers, in pockets in a rock garden or planted en masse.Also useful for planting in retaining walls and on embankments.
Plant in sun or semi-shade in well-drained soil.
Size: 30 cm
Crassula capitella ‘Campfire’ is a hardy, evergreen, small, branching succulent that has prostrate and fleshy propeller-shaped leaves.The foliage is lime-green with red tips.If you plant it in full sun and limit the water the leaves turn bright red.The foliage is the best feature of this succulent plant.
Spikes of insignificant white, star-shaped flowers are borne in summer and attract bees, butterflies and other tiny insects.
It makes a particularly pretty hanging basket.
Plant in full sun or partial shade in well-drained soil.Prune after flowering.
Size: up to 20cm
Crassula expansa is a hardy, evergreen, succulent, delicate-looking but vigorous groundcover with tiny, bright-green, slightly fleshy, finger-like leaves.
This pretty plant bears masses of tiny, star-like, white flowers from November to April.
Suitable for containers and for planting between stepping-stones.It thrives in those difficult, dry, dark shade areas under trees.
It grows well in either semi-shade or shade in well-drained soil.
Crassula ovata is a hardy, evergreen, erect, succulent shrublet of which two subspecies are recognised.It has a tree-like appearance, with a single, light-brown to greyish-brown main stem, from which many small branches arise.The small, fleshy, dark-green leaves are slightly flattened and narrow.
The tiny, honey-scented, creamy-white to pink flowers are carried in many rounded inflorescences on the plant almost all year round but mainly April to September.The flowers attract a whole host of tiny insects which are the staple diet of lizards and frogs.
Used in traditional medicine.It is beautiful planted in amongst rocks or in a container.
Plant in sun or semi-shade in well-drained soil.
Size: up to 1m
Crassula sarcocaulis is a hardy, evergreen, erect, succulent shrublet with a number of varieties.It has small, dark- to bright-green, narrow, very succulent leaves.
The creamy-white flowers are carried in a round inflorescence almost all year round.The flowers attract a whole host of tiny insects which are the staple diet of lizards and frogs.
It is beautiful planted in amongst rocks or in a container and also makes a great, easy-to-grow bonsai subject.Used in traditional medicine.
It grows in sun or semi-shade.
Size: 60 cm
Crassula spathulata is a very hardy, evergreen, succulent, creeping, fast-growing, mat-forming groundcover with glossy, almost lime-green, round little leaves.When grown in sun and not watered much, the leaves turn a pinky-red on the margins.
Sprays of tiny, pink and white flowers are borne in spring and summer.The flowers are visited by many tiny pollinating insects.
It can be planted as a living mulch to help keep moisture in and weeds out.Mass plant under trees and along borders as well as in containers and hanging baskets where it will cascade happily over the edges.This pretty plant is tough, easy to grow and rewarding.One of its many uses is that it helps to stabilise banks.
Grows well in shade and sun and, although it is a succulent, it thrives in a normally irrigated garden.
Size: 10 to 15 cm
Crassula tetragona is a hardy, evergreen, succulent shrub with rows of bright-green, sword-shaped leaves.These are evenly arranged in crossed, opposite pairs along the stems, which are held upright in a vertical position.
In summer and early autumn, it bears masses of tiny, creamy-white flowers in an inflorescence carried above the shrub.
The compact, upright habit makes this an attractive plant.Makes a beautiful bonsai, or container plant in drier spots in the garden.
Plant in sun or semi-shade.
Size: up to 1m
Curio [=Senecio] rowleyanus is a hardy, evergreen, mat-forming, succulent groundcover with long creeping, trailing stems.Pea-like, perfectly round leaves with a translucent stripe spaced along their entire length hang along the stems, hence the common name ‘String of Pearls’.When the stems lie on the ground they will root at the nodes and spread into quite large patches.
From spring to autumn it bears masses of pretty, brush-like white flowers on and off that attract tiny, pollinating insects.The flowers are faintly cinnamon-scented.
A beautiful plant for hanging baskets, window boxes or a variety of other containers, where the dense bunches of trailing stems hang gracefully over the edge.
Plant in semi-shade in well-drained soil.
Size: 1m Trailing stems
Gladiolus dalenii is a very hardy, deciduous, summer-growing perennial with a corm that gives rise to a fan of erect, grey-green leaves.
The tall, erect, flowering stem has large, hooded flowers varying from intense orange-red to yellow, pale-green and speckled-brown.
Kleinia galpinii is a hardy, attractive, evergreen succulent plant has flattened, grey-green leaves that arise from a fleshy stem.These grow from a tuberous rootstock.
The clusters of bright-orange or scarlet flowers are carried on a long, flowering stems from January to August.The flowers attract insects to the garden.
This long-flowering plant will brighten up a rockery or mixed flowerbed.
Plant in well-drained soil in full sun or light shade.
Bulbine natalensis ‘Mini’ is a hardy, evergreen, miniature form of the robust, hardy, succulent plant ‘Bulbine natalensis’. This form is about a quarter of the size of the regular Bulbine natalensis, with narrow, short, fleshy leaves in a basal rosette. They are bright-green to almost yellow-green and look a little like a mini Aloe although they are quite soft.
Densely-packed, star-shaped, yellow flowers adorn the ends of long, flowering spikes throughout the year. They are held well above the leaves, attracting many small pollinating insects to the garden.
They make a pretty container plant. Apart from the size, the main difference between the regular form and this miniature form, is that this form suckers freely and creates attractive clumps.
It is ideal as a rockery, container or bedding plant in well-drained soil in semi-shade or shade.
Size: up to 15cm
Thunbergia neglecta is a very hardy, evergreen, low-growing, scrambling perennial with attractive, heart-shaped leaves.
In summer it bears beautiful, round, open, creamy-yellow flowers with a darker-yellow centre. They attract insects to the garden. Pretty planted in a grassland garden scrambling through the grasses, out of a hanging basket, creeping up a trellis or tumbling over retaining walls.
Prune after flowering to keep in shape and ensure masses of flowers in the next season.
It is fast-growing, requires well-drained soil and only moderate water. It can be planted in sun or semi-shade.
Size: up to 1m
Juncus effusus - Mat-Rush is a very hardy, evergreen, tufted, perennial rush grows in wet areas as well as in a normally irrigated garden.The grass-like leaves are very variable, with some plants having robust, upright leaves whilst others have slender graceful leaves.
The flowers are small, dry and scaly and crowded at the tips of the long thin stems in spring and summer.The flowering stems are beautiful in a vase.
Traditionally used for weaving sleeping mats and baskets.The little seeds are golden brown. It is a useful addition to a wetland garden and to help filter water.
It should be planted in well-watered, sunny areas.
Acacia nigrescens (=Senegalia nigrescens) is a hardy, small to large stately deciduous tree is characterised by its knob-studded grey or yellow trunk and branches. The hooked spine-tipped knobs are prevalent on young trees but are less evident on older specimens.
Sweetly-scented spikes of creamy-white flowers are produced from August to November. When in flower this tree is alive and humming with the multitude of insects and birds that feast on the pollen and nectar offered up.
It is an important browse tree for game and generally indicates good ranching land.The graceful, tall canopy attracts Paradise Flycatchers and hole-nesting birds. It is the host plant of the Demon Emperor Butterfly.The wood is very hard and used extensively.
It makes a good bonsai and container subject.It grows in a wide variety of soil types in full sun.
Size: 5 to 18 metres
Diascia ‘Hybrids’ is a hardy, evergreen, bushy, drought-resistant, perennial groundcover with fine round leaves.
This hybrid bears spikes of flowers in profusion, ranging in colour from white, pink, orange and through to red.The flowers are borne mainly from August to March but it does bear some flowers all year round.
Beautiful planted along the edges of beds, in containers and in amongst small grasses.
Plant in full sun in well-drained soil and do not overwater.Prune lightly on a regular basis to keep it flowering.
Size: 15 to 25cm
Tulbaghia simmleri is a hardy, fast growing, deciduous, bulbous plant with attractive, grey-green, fleshy, strap-like leaves that die back in winter.
Umbels of deep lilac, sweetly scented flowers are borne on long stems and make an excellent cut flower. It flowers from late summer (May) into early spring (September).
Plant in well-drained, compost rich soil in shade or sun.
Pelargonium quercifolium "Royal Oak" is a hardy, drought resistant shrublet with striking, oak-like foliage that is worth planting just for its beautiful maroon veined leaves. The foliage is balsam-scented.
It also bears gorgeous dark pink to red flowers almost all year round. The flowers attract insects to the garden.
Looks beautiful in either a mixed bed, mass planted or as a container plant. Plant in full sun or half day shade and, importantly, plant them in well-drained soil.
Size 30 to 50cm
Strelitzia juncea is a lovely addition to the garden. This hardy, evergreen plant forms a bushy clump of tough, cylindrical leaves. The interesting leaves and shape make this a stunning accent and container plant.
The brilliant orange and shimmering peacock-blue flowers have an interesting structure resembling an exotic bird, and flower from May to October.
The beautiful, flowers attract a number of different bird species to the garden. The nectar attracts sunbirds while the black seeds with an orange aril attracts many seed eating birds to the garden. Use both the long lasting flowers and leaves for flower arranging.
Plant in well-drained, rich soil in full sun or partial shade.
Size up to 1.5m
Gazania gazoo Citrus Mix is a hardy, evergreen, drought resistant, sun loving groundcover with glossy leaves.
This vigorous Gazania produces large flowers on strong stems in spring and summer. They are free flowering with a long flowering season.
This hybrid mixture of orange and yellow flowers even open under low light conditions. Needs well-drained soil and moderate water.
Ideal for a rockery and for stabilizing soil on banks as well as for mass planting and containers.
Size 15 to 30cm
Albuca shawii is a hardy, deciduous bulb with very thin, dark-green leaves that are covered in short, sticky hairs.The leaves have a faint smell of liquorice when crushed.
The flowering spikes bear a spray of beautiful, nodding, delicately-scented yellow and green flowers from September to February.
A beautiful addition to a rockery, short grassland garden or meadow of delicate, bulbous plants.
They prefer full sun but can take light semi-shade. Plant in well-drained, loamy soil and do not over-water. If planting in a grassland, make sure that they are not swamped by too many tall grasses.
Size: up to 40cm
Salvia 'Beautiful Blue' is a very hardy, evergreen, small shrub with aromatic, bright-green leaves that grow in clumps along the stems.
Clusters of sky-blue, funnel-shaped flowers are borne en masse from June to December. When the flowers fall off, the decorative calyx remains and is an added feature.
The flowers of Wild Sage can be used as a good cut flower. It is an attractive, easy plant to grow. As with all Salvia’s they attract pollinating insects and Sunbirds to the garden.
Plant in well-drained soil in full sun or semi-shade and water well in winter. This tough plant tolerates very dry conditions and should not be over-watered. Prune back hard once a year.
Size: 0,5 to 0,75m
Hibiscus pedunculatus is a hardy, evergreen, small to medium-sized shrub whose delicate, dainty look belies the fact that it is hardy and easy to grow. The lobed leaves feel like sandpaper.
From October to May the delightful, large, pale pink, hibiscus-like flowers are borne on long stalks.
The abundant pollen offered by the flowers attracts insects while Charaxes butterflies use it as a host plant. It is used in traditional medicine.
Group a few together for a gorgeous display or plant in amongst other shrubs as a border or screen where the flowers peeping through the other shrubs give the border a whimsical look.
Carissa macrocarpa "Green Carpet" is a hardy, evergreen, drought-resistant, dense, spiny, dwarf spreading shrublet with leathery, dark-green, glossy leaves.
It has beautiful, quite large, scented, white flowers and large edible red fruits on and off throughout the year.
It attracts butterflies and fruit-eating birds to the garden. The fruits make a delicious jelly that is sold as ‘Amatungulu Jelly’. This useful plant can be used to cover large areas or clipped into an attractive small formal hedge. It also looks great in a container.
Erect shoots should be clipped to keep the dwarf habit. Plant in shade, semi-shade or sun, in well-drained, well-composted soil.
Size: up to 40cm
Zanthoxylum capense is a hardy, deciduous to semi-deciduous small to medium-sized tree, with smooth, dark grey bark and broad, cone-shaped knobs that are topped with a short spine. The leaves are divided into leaflets, that are shiny and dark green above, and paler beneath. When crushed they are somewhat brittle and have a strong Citrus scent.
From October to February, the tiny, white, scented flowers are clustered at the ends of the branches. The male and female flowers are borne on separate trees. Female trees develop clusters of tiny orange-red fruits that split to release oil-rich black seeds. The fruit is edible but cause a burning sensation in the mouth.
Both flowers and fruit attract many insects and birds to the garden. It is a host plant to the Citrus Swallowtail and other Swallowtail Butterflies. This tree is widely used in traditional medicine remedies, and the wood is used for implements.
It makes an excellent container plant, or part of a forest garden or plant singly as a specimen tree to prune up and expose the interesting, knobbly stem.
Plant in semi-shade or full sun, in well-drained, compost rich soil.
Size: 2 to 15m
Strophanthus speciosus is a semi-hardy, evergreen small tree, shrub or climber with greenish bark that has raised white dots. The leaves are leathery and, like the rest of the plant, contain a poisonous, water sap.
The flowers, borne from September to December, are striking – with long spidery tepals that are creamy yellow to orange, with a brighter orange marking towards the centre of the flower. The greenish yellow, two-horned fruit that develops after flowering becomes brown, and splits to release seeds attached to silky hairs that assist with dispersing them by wind.
The seeds, leaves and latex of this plant are poisonous, and are nevertheless used in traditional medicine – particularly in the treatment of snakebites.
An interesting container plant, that can be grown as a woody climber or planted and pruned up to remain a small tree or large shrub. It requires well-composted soil, moderate watering and plant in a semi-shade to shady position.
Size: can climb up to 10m if supported
Aloe striata is a hardy, stemless, smooth-leaved Aloe with a rosette of fleshy, blue green leaves. Each leaf is edged with a thin orange line that glows when the sun shines through it.
During the winter months, dense, compact inflorescences of brilliant orange flowers top a grey-green flowering stalk that stands about 50cm above the leaves.
Aristida congesta subsp. barbicollisis a very hardy, evergreen to semi-deciduous, delicate, perennial, tufted grass with long, white hairs where the leaf meets the stem.
It bears delicate, twisted spikelets at the tips of branches from October to May.
This tough, pioneer grass can be used to stabilise soil or cover bare patches to protect the soil. It is pretty planted amongst flowering plants in a meadow garden or in a grassland garden.
As with all grasses it should be cut back once a year and raked to remove the thatch. It is unfussy about the soil type it is planted in, and will thrive in all but waterlogged soils in sun or semi-shade.
Size: Flowering stem up to 80cm
Miscanthus capensisis a very hardy, evergreen, clump-forming, large grass that has beautiful autumn colours.
The flowering stalks are topped with plumes of pink seed-heads in late summer and early autumn. The clumps of leaves are about 1m tall and the flowering stalks are up to 2m tall.
Weavers choose this grass above other plants for nesting material. They use the leaves to weave the nest and the seed to line it.
Use as a backdrop to a garden bed or as a screening plant in narrow beds. It is effective planted as a single, sculptural, feature plant in a garden. Plant into window-box type containers where they can be used as a screen on a balcony. This tall grass is beautiful moving in the lightest of breezes in the garden.
As with all grasses, to keep it healthy, it should be cut back once a year and raked to remove the thatch. Plant in sun or semi-shade in damp or normal garden conditions.
Size: Flowering stem up to 2m
Haemanthus albiflos is a hardy, evergreen, shade-loving, bulbous plant with mainly broad, glossy, green, strap-like leaves, although they are very variable and can sometimes be hairy. The upper half of the bulb is bright-green and is exposed above ground.
The beautiful ‘paintbrush’-type inflorescence is borne from April to September. It has a papery, green calyx encasing a head of many long, thin, white flowers that are yellow-tipped with pollen. The orange-red berries that follow are an attractive feature.
The pollen attracts bees and butterflies to the garden while birds love the succulent berries. It is also used in traditional medicine.
This plant makes a wonderful container plant as it likes to be pot-bound. Use as an indoor plant as well. This is a shade-loving plant and, if left undisturbed, will flower and thrive in those dark, difficult areas of the garden.
Plant in well-drained, compost-rich soil. Remember when planting out to leave the top half of the bulb exposed.
Size: 20 to 25cm
Crinum moorei is a hardy, evergreen or semi-deciduous, very fast-growing bulb with beautiful broad, flat, bright-green leaves in a rosette on the end of a short stalk.
The long, flowering stalk carries a head of large, tubular flowers that form a beautiful umbel of pink to almost white flowers from October to January.
Silene bellidioides is a very hardy, evergreen, perennial plant with tall, erect, sticky stems and rosettes of leaves at the base.
From October to April, the plant produces one or more flowering stems that have a few branches with flowers positioned at the tips of each branch. The flower petals are white or pale pink and deeply divided. The long, tubular flower calyx is pale green, striped with dark-red veins. The beautiful, scented flowers open in the evening, and shine like neon lights at night, attracting moths to pollinate them.
Traditionally, this plant is used as a love-potion.
It is an excellent addition to a sunny grassland garden.
Plant in full sun or semi-shade in well-drained soil.
Size: up to 30cm
Crassula swaziensis is a hardy, semi prostrate succulent perennial plant with attractive grey-green, round leaves that are arranged in rosettes.
The dense flat-topped inflorescences of masses of small white flowers that are tinged pink are borne from January to April. They attract a whole host of tiny insects.
Plant in well-drained soil in a rockery in the shade of other plants and grasses.
Ficus craterostoma is a fairly hardy, semi-decidious, medium sized strangler fig with a rounded, spreading crown and pale grey bark. It has fairly small leaves for a fig, which are dark glossy green, blunt tipped like a fish’s tail, and spirally arranged, making them an exceptionally attractive feature of this plant.
The stalkless, hairless figs, which are inverted flowers, are borne in the axils of the leaves. The small figs turn yellowish red when ripe from May to December.
The figs attract many fruit-eating birds to the garden. Makes a wonderful container plant or bonsai.
Plant in sun or shade.
Figs should not be planted close to walls and paving as they have aggressive root system.
Size: 5 to 10m
Podocarpus latifolius is a very hardy, evergreen, large, beautifully-shaped tree. It is slow growing, but makes an outstanding shade or specimen tree for bigger gardens. The yellowish to greyish-brown bark flakes off in thin, vertical strips. It has beautiful dark-green leaves that are carried more or less horizontally.
The sweet, edible, fleshy, reddish-purple, female cones carry 1 or 2 seeds that ripen from green to pink to red during December and February.
Freesia grandiflora is a fairly hardy, deciduous plant with fan of soft, bring green, flat leaves that arise from an underground corm.
The large, scarlet flowers look like bright red stars, with a darker red blotch in the centre of the flower. It blooms from December to April. The seeds that follow are bright orange.
It makes a beautiful garden subject, especially when planted amongst rocks and shorter grasses. It is also a lovely container plant.
Plant in full sun to semi-shade, in well-composted soil that drains well.
Size to 45cm
Nuxia floribunda is a hardy, evergreen, fast-growing, neat and attractive tree that is quite small in drier conditions, but if its roots find water it can get quite big.
Pale grey, smooth bark contrasts beautifully with the glossy, dark-green leaves that turn quite purple in winter.
Its huge heads of showy, sweetly-scented, white flowers cover the tree from May to September. The flowers attract a whole host of small pollinating insects, moths and butterflies that in turn attract birds.
It has many magical and medicinal uses.
It grows well in a container, and is also a lovely tree with which to create a small forested area in the garden.
Plant in either full sun or semi-shade and water regularly.
Size: 3 to 10m
Kleinia fulgens is a hardy, attractive, evergreen succulent plant with a creeping, tuberous rootstock. It has broad, flattened, slightly fleshy stalkless leaves that arise directly from a fleshy stem. They are grey-green with a purple margin.
The clusters of bright-orange or scarlet flowers are carried on long, flowering stems from January to August. The flowers attract pollinating insects to the garden.
This long-flowering plant will brighten up a rockery or mixed flowerbed.
Plant in well-drained soil in full sun or light shade.
Size: 30cm to 60cm
Erythrina humeana is a hardy, deciduous, fairly fast-growing shrub or small tree with dark olive-green, trifoliate leaves.
The long-lasting, gorgeous, brilliant red, long flower spikes are carried above the leaves on slender stalks.
Delosperma echinatum (Pickle Plant) is a hardy, evergreen, small, partially-upright shrublet that has barrel-shaped short (25mm) leaves, hence its common name pickle plant. The light-green leaves have short, white, bristly hairs and attractive water vesicles (tiny bladders), that will add texture to your plantings.
It bears masses of small, white or yellow, glistening flowers in spring.
This drought-resistant plant makes a good addition to a rockery, succulent or grass garden and does particularly well in containers.
Plant in well-drained soil in sun or light shade. It should be allowed to dry out between waterings.
Size: up to 45cm
Polygala virgata is a very hardy, evergreen, fast-growing, slender shrub with long, narrow, dark-green leaves.
From October to July it bears tall terminal spikes of massed purple to mauve pea-like flowers that attract insects.
Although not particularly long-lived, they readily seed themselves around the garden. The flower spikes last well as cut flowers. Used medicinally.
For the best effect, plant 3 or more of these slender shrubs together, in sun or semi-shade, in compost-rich soil. Prune from when they are young to encourage them to bush out; this will help create an amazing display of flowers.
Maytenus undata is a very hardy, evergreen large or small tree. Its height is very variable, and depends on the area in which it is growing. The colder it is the smaller the tree. The bark is grey-brown with patches flaking off and leaving pinkish blotches.
One can tell the hardiness by the foliage form - the smaller and more leathery the leaves, the hardier the tree. The foliage is variable in size and colour from pale to dark-green and gives off a musty scent when rubbed.
It bears creamy-white flowers all summer (from September to May).
In April the tree produces black seeds covered with orange flesh that attract birds.
Makes a good garden subject or container plant and is a must for a wildlife garden.
Plant in semi-shade or sun.
Size: 1 to 6m
Helichrysum cymosum is a hardy, evergreen small, leafy, scandent shrub with beautiful silvery, small leaves that are woolly below.
It bears compact heads of yellow, papery flowers at the tips of each branchlet from September to April.
Lachenalia hybrids belong to a group of small, fairly hardy, hyacinth-like, deciduous bulbous plants. In winter they produce attractive, strap-shaped, bright green leaves that are sometimes dotted with deep purple markings.
Between May and October, a spike of tubular to bell-shaped flowers arises from the centre of the bulb. The flowers range in colour from yellow tinged with orange or red, to greenish yellow and even mauve. They produce copious amounts of pollen, which is sought after by pollinating insects such as bees.
Lachenalia hybrids are particularly suited to being ornamental, indoor container plants, or put on a patio. Plant en masse in a container or in dappled shade, in a protected flower bed for seasonal colour.
Plant in semi-shade, light shade or dappled shade, in a good mix of sand and loam, so that they get nutrients but water drains away well. Do not water in summer, once the flowers have died.
Size to 20cm
Watsonia borbonica is a semi-hardy, deciduous (summer dormant) clump-forming plant that sends out fans of up to eight long, glossy, bright green leaves in autumn, from a large underground corm.
Magnificent, tall spikes of beautiful showy pink flowers in late winter to spring (mid July to end September) adorn the plant and command attention. Flowering stems are sometimes branched. The fruit is a capsule that splits three-ways to release the hard seeds. In the natural habitat, fire seems to increase the seed yield.
The flowers provide nectar and pollen (both before midday only) for nectar and pollen-feeding insects and birds.
Valuable garden plant as the lush clumps of leaves provide contrast and visual texture, even when the plant is not in flower. Makes an attractive, large container plant and beautiful planted en masse in the garden.
Lift and divide clumps during their dormant season (February to March) every three to five years for best flowering. Plant in compost rich, well drained, sandy soil, in full sun.
Size: flowering stem up to 2m in height.
Zantedeschia rehmannii is a hardy, deciduous plant with a thickened, tuber-like rootstock from which lance shaped, lush green leaves arise. Most Arum Lily species have a lobed base but The Pink Arum has a tapering leaf base.
The flower is a slender, elongated spathe of varying shades of pink (light pink through to deep maroon) which turns green as it matures. Flowering is from October to March, (mostly November to January).
The fruit is green, and as it matures and gains weight along the spathe, it bends the flower stem downwards.
It is a prized cut flower, container plant and garden plant world-wide.
For best results, care for Z. rehmannii by lifting dormant plants and storing them dry until the following growing season when they need to be watered well. Add plenty of rich compost to the soil.
Plant in sun or semi-shade.
Size: up to 50cm
Stachys aethiopica ‘Pink’ is a hardy, evergreen, spreading groundcover, with beautiful pale-green, almost quilted leaves.
It bears spikes of small, pink, tubular flowers mainly in spring but with a few flowers almost all year round.
Peddiea africana is a fairly hardy (not frost hardy), small, slender tree or large shrub, with dark grey-brown, fibrous bark. The shiny, dark green leaves are clustered at the ends of branches. New leaves are a shiny, pale green, giving a decorative contrast of foliage on the plant.
The clusters of yellowish-green flowers (Sept. to Feb.)
Typha capensis is a very hardy reed that can be either evergreen or deciduous depending on local climate. It is robust, fast-growing and is widespread. It only grows partially submerged in water. It has long, grey-green stems with blue-green leaves.
From December to January, the stems end in the typical, cylindrical, velvety brown ‘Bulrush’ flower. These turn into seeds covered in ‘cotton wool’ which helps with dispersal of seeds.
This ‘cotton wool’ is used to stuff cushions.
It has many traditional and medicinal uses.
The Bulrush can be used in boggy areas, among wet pebbles and is one of the best plants to clean grey water. It helps to keep pond water clean and healthy. It is used extensively for the rehabilitation of wetlands and other permanently wet areas. This plant creates vital habitat for many bird species, fish fry, frogs, terrapins and many other aquatic creatures.
This plant spreads quite aggressively by its rhizomes and should only be planted in containers in garden ponds where it can be controlled.
Plant in full sun and prune and clean once a year.
Size: 1 to 2.5m
Thorncroftia succulenta is a very hardy, evergreen, much-branched shrub with succulent stems and leaves. The many grey green leaves are covered in dense short hairs.
From February to June, the plant bears many spikes of long, tubular magenta pink flowers.
Rock sage makes an interesting, medium to large shrub for rockeries. As it is extremely drought hardy, this is a good addition to a waterwise garden.
Plant in well-drained soil in sunny areas of the garden.
Size up to 1.5m
Diospyros austro-africana is a very hardy, evergreen, attractive, much branched shrub, but can become a small tree in ideal growing conditions.
The small leaves turn a blackish-red in winter.
Tiny red flowers borne from August to November are followed by attractive red to black berries. (As with all Diospyros sp. sexes are on separate plants, therefore only female plants bear fruit).
It attracts birds and insects.
Its unusual foliage makes an interesting addition to any garden, and it is suitable as a beautiful container plant, bonsai subject or for a striking feature in an oriental styled garden.
This extremely hardy and drought resistant shrub is very useful and will grow in most challenging conditions. It gets a lovely twisted shape and stays small if not overwatered and over fertilized. Plant in sun or semi-shade.
Size 2 to 3m
Senecio speciosus is a very hardy, evergreen, clump forming perennial with finely toothed leaves arranged in a rosette at the base of the plant.
The beautiful sprays of intensely mauve to lilac flowers adorn the grasslands throughout late winter, when they send out sprays of lilac pink daisy flowers against the drab of sleeping grasslands. Flowering continues into the middle of summer.
Flowers provide nectar and pollen to many pollinating insects, including bees.
A beautiful addition to a meadow or grassland planting, provided it receives sufficient water.
Prefers a damp, sunny spot in loamy soil to thrive. Mulch well to retain soil moisture. Plant in full sun or partial shade.
Size to 30cm
Greyia radlkoferi is a small, gnarled, hardy, deciduous tree that has a crooked main stem and rough fissured bark.
The bright green leaves are velvety and turn red in autumn.
The striking orange red flowers that adorn the tree from July to November are laden with nectar and attract insects and birds.
Remove the dead leaves to keep looking neat and show off the flowers.
A very decorative garden subject for a sunny or semi-shade position. Protect from frost when young.
Size: 3 to 6m
Ornithogalum sp. ‘Tiny Peddie' is a hardy, evergreen, bulbous plant with a tuft of glossy, grass-like leaves and small bulbs that multiply.
It flowers from October to March with spikes of pure white, star-like flowers that are almost translucent. The flowers attract insects to the garden and make delicate cut flowers.
A beautiful plant for rockeries or containers or as a border plant.
This pretty plant will happily multiply in your beds but it is small, so should be planted in groups.
These bulbs require well-drained, compost-rich soil in sun or light semi-shade.
Size: 20 to 25cm
Helichrysum crispum is a hardy, evergreen, dense, very fast-growing, compact perennial with beautiful, small, dainty, silvery-grey velvety, rounded, aromatic leaves.
Hyparrhenia tamba is a very hardy, evergreen to semi-deciduous, impressive, tall grass with blue, almost turquoise, leaves and thick stems.
They also display beautiful colours of yellow and red as they mature, when planted in full sun. The tangled flower- and seed-heads also have a turquoise hue and are borne from January to June.
Plant in containers, or as a backdrop to a grassland garden. It is beautiful planted in pots as a screen on balcony gardens or in small gardens. It is also useful as a soil stabilizer, especially in damp areas.
Plant in sun or light semi-shade areas. This grass should be cut back every two or three years and raked to remove the thatch.
Size: 2 to 2.5m
Trimeria grandifolia is a hardy, deciduous small tree with beautiful, large, shiny round leaves.
It has small sprays of densely hairy, white flowers from August to February and tight clusters of small red and yellow berries that look like mulberries. Male and female flowers on separate trees therefore only the female trees bear seeds.
It is a butterfly host plant and has many medicinal uses.
This is a very useful foliage plant that adds texture to the garden.
Grows in semi-shade, in compost rich soil.
Size: 4 to 10m
Agapanthus campanulatus is a very hardy, deciduous, clump forming perennial with green to grey-green, strap-shaped leaves produced on a stem-like base.
It has umbels of pale to deep blue flowers with a darker stripe on each petal. Inflorescences are carried at the end of long stems from December to March (If you visit Suikerbosrand Nature Reserve in Gauteng, look out for them blooming in amongst the rocks).
The rhizomes and roots are used traditionally and as a protective charm.
As they are deciduous, plant in clumps in an evergreen, mixed herbaceous border. Although they are winter dormant they do tolerate water in winter. Plant in full sun in rich, well-drained soil.
Size: up to 1m
Plectranthus chimanimaniensis is a hardy, evergreen shrublet (protect the first winter) with small, semi-succulent, soft-textured and aromatic, dark-green leaves.
The numerous individual flowers are a delicate pink, with soft, pink wings that have a white lip. They are carried on strikingly long pink flower spikes which are borne in such abundance that they ensure that the flower-to-foliage ratio is particularly high. It appears that this gem is never out of flower, but is mainly in flower from spring to early winter.
Attracts butterflies and tiny insects to the garden. This is a useful garden and container plant.
Prune regularly. Tolerates light frost and drought. Plant it in compost-rich soil in full sun or semi-shade.
Size: up to 80cm
Sesamothanmus lugardii is a fairly hardy, misshapen, small tree or shrub that resembles a miniature baobab. It has tiny leaves that cluster along the long elegant stems and mottled bark.
It bears beautiful white frilly flowers with a long tube from November to February. It has attractive heart-shaped seeds capsules that all pop open together to release their papery seeds in just a few days. This is why the seeds are so hard to come by.
Plant in full sun in a hot dry area in a rockery or it also makes a lovely container plant.
Size: Up to 4m
Aloe verecunda is a very hardy, semi-deciduous, Grass-Aloe that forms dense clumps and has dull green to bluish green fan-shaped leaves with white spots and soft teeth along the margins.
It bears dense heads of pendulous, tubular peach to scarlet flowers on long stalks from November to February. The nectar rich flowers attract sunbirds and insects to the garden.
The Grass Aloes are adapted to cold and fire and resprout, from thick fleshy roots in the spring.
Beautiful addition to a grassland garden.
If transplanted or split, they take some time to recover. Plant in full sun in well-drained soil in amongst rocks in a grassland or succulent garden. Cut the water right back in winter when they are dormant.
Size: Up to 30cm
Osteospermum ecklonis is a hardy, evergreen, drought-resistant, bushy perennial with a rounded, spreading shape and bright-green, slightly-succulent leaves.
It bears large, glistening, white, daisy-like flowers that are streaked with bluish-mauve below and have attractive deep-blue centres. It flowers in spring and summer when it makes a stunning show.
This pretty white daisy bush attracts many butterflies and insects to the garden.
Mass-plant as a border, use as an element of a cottage garden, or plant in a rock garden.
Prune back after flowering to keep in shape.
Plant in well-drained soil in a sunny position as the flowers close in low light.
Size: up to 75cm