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Attract more birds

Duranta have berries that turn bright yellowBirds are attracted to gardens where there is some shelter and a regular supply of food. By planting bird attracting plants you can encourage them not only to feed from your feeding station but to also nest in your garden.

The best feeding programme for birds is to plant shrubs and trees which offer nature's menu. Favorites like the Aloes will attract nectar feeding birds while seed eating birds are attracted to the seed heads of grasses.  To attract fruit eating birds, plant berry producing plants. Here are some of our recommendations from Eckards.

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Birds of a feather

The Cape Robin Chat loves to feed on a suet ballThere are many things you can do to attract birds to your garden and although one never owns a garden bird they do become familiar with your garden.

A feeding station for the garden birds is the easiest way to keep birds returning and if you get into a routine with your feeding the birds will soon follow it and be ready and waiting for you.

Food, water and bugs for desert is on the menu for most of our garden birds locally and over the next few months your garden could be a haven for them.

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Food gardening for winter

Plant from seed or established seedlings for a mixed basket of winter greensAutumn into early winter is the time to refresh the veggie patch or even plant up some new containers of veggies and greens to boost your kitchen garden over the coming months. By planting before it gets frosty you will find that you get some good growth with the warmer day temperatures and ultimately a better harvest down the line.

As you pull out the last of your summer crops that are ending always prepare the soil to replace the nutrients used up with the last harvest. Veggies love loads of organic matter and home-grown organic veggies even taste better than organic store bought.

Traditionally the best time of the year for root crops one can also add some leafy greens to the winter harvest. As gardens have become smaller and more protected it has become easier to grow top crops too. If your veggie patch is very exposed to the elements and covers in heavy frost then choose root crops first but if not it’s time to experiment!

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#WaterWise succulents

Frilly Echiveria are also called painted ladiesNot just because they are ‪#‎WaterWise, we love the way the cooler night temperatures intensify the colours on the succulents. Gardening with succulents and aloes is bang on trend and with that more and more varieties are more freely available. Succulents is the one group of plants that we see young and old love and even if you don't "love" them there will always be one that will catch your eye and start the appreciation :-)

Almost every garden will have some form of succulent in them as it is a typical South African range of plants and they don't just die on you… which is why even in older gardens they still survive.

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