Companies the world over can only dream of having staff arrive at work as punctually as a portulacas bloom in the morning. Colourful, water wise, easy going and will fill a patch in your garden where not much else will thrive, what more could a gardener want?
- What these gorgeous treasures need is sun. Lots of it, in fact, the whole day long if possible. Luckily, most gardens have patches where not much grows because they get too much sun, and the soil is not terribly fertile because of the hammering from the unrelenting rays. This is the perfect place for your portulacas and the once desert-looking patch will transform into a fiery colour palette before you know it.
- It’s quite simple, just remember to avoid areas with shade or waterlogged soil and don’t worry if the soil is not rich with nutrients because they’ll grow in sandy soils with practically no attention. Being water-wise little plants, keep the water in the tap until it’s needed and try not to pummel their soft leaves with hard overhead watering.
- Plant up your portulacas in rockeries, hanging baskets, pots, between stepping stones and even as a ground cover, if that’s what you need. Their eye-catching colours will make any of these areas impossible to miss. They are available in scarlet, orange and yellow for the bolder gardener or white and pastel shades for a more understated feel.
Information supplied by the Bedding Plant Growers Association. For more visit www.lifeisagarden.co.za