A smallish area near the house or deck that gets plenty of sun is ideal and autumn is the best time to start planting your mini-meadow.
The secret in creating a stunning display lies in randomly planting groups of grasses and flowers to form a more natural look. After all, Mother Nature never planted in rows, did she?!
Some indigenous grasses that would look beautiful are Red Top grass (Melinis nerviglumis), Heart seed love grass (Erogostis capensis) and Aristida junciformis, which has honey- coloured seed heads. These will all provide movement and texture. Another grass to consider Clorophytum sandersiae with green leaves and white flowers.
Among the grasses dot Crocosmia, Watsonias, Pincushions, Orange lion’s ear (leonotis leonurus), Aloe cooperii, Dieramiga, Hedgehog sage (pycnostaefys urticifolia) and blue Agapanthus. White Dietes, pink sage bush (Orthosiphon labiatus), the wild Foxglove (cerototheca triloba), Salvia and scabious will all look amazing in amongst the grasses.
To fill any gaps you can use yellow and orange bulbine, Gazania and Cape forget me not (Anchusa capensis).
There isn’t any need to dig over your chosen spot before planting or to add any fertiliser as this type of planting is better if the soil isn’t too rich. so just loosen the surface soil.
An established mini-meadow will attract a host of bees, birds, butterflies and other wildlife that will come to feed on the pollen, seeds and nectar of the indigenous plants. You may need to do a little weeding, but once the plants become settled and spread out the need to weed and water diminishes!
A mini-meadow, great for wildlife, and for you!
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We at village gardens have a knowledge of all of your local edible plants here in South Africa. We can happily plant up your garden with edibles of all varieties from Mediterranean herbs and local indigenous edibles. We are surrounded by such stunning hardy indigenous plants, let’s get back to nature and have our own garden of local goodness.
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