Water-wise vegetable gardening with Soil for Life
Even as the heat of summer starts to cool we should
remain conscious of saving water in this thirsty land.
But it doesn’t mean you won’t be able to reap an
abundant harvest. Soil for Life is a dynamic nonprofit
organisation that believes everyone can grow
some of their own food, whatever resources or space
they have available. Here Soil for Life’s founder Pat
Featherstone shares some excellent advice on waterwise
gardening with Soil for Life
To learn more about creating a home vegetable
garden join Soil for Life’s Grow to Live natural gardening
course. Held over a weekend at their beautiful organic
garden in Constantia, Cape Town, you’ll learn lots and
leave inspired. The cost is R850 per person.
All profits from Soil for Life’s courses are ploughed
back into their community development work,
helping provide training and tools so that families in
impoverished areas can grow their own nutritious food.
Soil for Life’s gardens and training centre is situated
just off Brounger Road, (off Spaanschemaat River
Road), Constantia, Cape Town (behind the Constantia
Waldorf School and Peddlars).
12th and 13th March
23rd and 24th April
14th and 15th May
11th and 12th June
23rd and 24th July
20th and 21st August
17th and 18th September
15th and 16th August
12th and 13th November
3rd and 4th December
For further information visit www.soilforlife.co.za or
contact 021 794 4982 / firstname.lastname@example.org
• Good, fertile soils are more resilient to drought and dry
weather. Build a healthy soil by turning your kitchen
and garden waste into the beautiful, rich part of soil
called humus. This stuff not only helps to hold water
in the soil, but also holds the soil particles together
to prevent erosion (by wind and water) and stores
nutrients to promote healthy plant growth.
• Mulch is a protective blanket for your garden and
helps save water. Place compost, dry grass cuttings,
newspaper, leaves, sticks, bark, peach pips or other
organic matter under plants and over the soil.
• Make a circular ‘dam’ in the soil around plants like
brinjals, peppers and tomatoes. The water will sink
deeper into the soil without running off.
• ‘Oily’ soils are common in the Western Cape and
don’t absorb water easily. Add extra compost and
mulch to an oily soil so it can retain water.
• Creeping herbs act as ‘green’ mulch and can
protect the soil. Good herbs for the Western Cape
include pennyroyal, marjoram, pennywort, thyme
WHAT TO PLANT IN MARCH & APRIL
Carrot, beetroot, broad beans, peas, lucerne, turnip,
radish, leek, spinach (Swiss chard), kale, lettuce,
cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, Brussel sprouts,
Chinese cabbage, celery, rape, kohlrabi, bush
beans, New Zealand spinach, globe artichokes,
Onions, leeks, spinach, kale, lettuce, cabbage,
cauliflower, broccoli, celery, Chinese cabbage,
rape, kohlrabi, glove artichokes,
Seed Potatoes – early March