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Water to the trees

With all the trees we have been planting on the main picnic area to replace the bluegums who refuse to die we needed a water supply nearby. As our dear chairlady has been agitating for this for some time we thought that we could put the left over pipe to good use and fulfil her wishes.

Fortunately the weather was cool and the soil moist so conditions were ideal.

We located the main supply pipe and put a T-piece in.

after that it was just hard work to dig the pipe in but with the four of us it was done in quick time
and the lady was very pleased.

While doing this Rob found one of the more interesting inhabitants of the Reserve.


After lunch we still managed to fix the broken railing on one of the small bridges, pull up quite a few Bryophyllums in the arboretum and inspected where the previous weekend’s triathlon had entered the reserve.


On the way out we still had a chat to Goodman and found out that one of their bakkies has been totalled going down the pass. Such joy.

Aloe koppie

Another trailer load of Proteas bagged up and delivered. We moved two big pallets into the shade house and put the bags on top, there is still room for more.

The big worry was that there was no water at the nursery after our pipe fix, all was sorted when I discovered I had switched the stopcock in the arboretum off when the problems started, senior moment I suppose. After that the tanks started filling up and we had excellent pressure again, phew!

The cool, overcast weather was conducive to some hard work so we continued with the West Bank, digging in plastic, moving rocks and planting until teatime while Rob pulled out lots of Podalyria seedlings in the burnt patch and Cathy weeded in the shade house. Keith was a little lost without his broken chainsaw.

Our varnished tables in the Fovs room look quite spiffy now.

After tea I somehow convinced everyone that it was an ideal time to weed the Aloe koppie as the grass is taking over again and, after the rains, the soil is nice and soft. The five of us each found a patch and not long after it looked a lot better.

Amazing that a year ago you couldn’t even see that the rockery existed, it was so overgrown.

The Zantedescias at The Dell have suffered from a porcupine attack but further it looks very lush, the Bulbines are flowering and make a pretty sight.
After lunch we still did some propagation of tree cuttings and fixed one of the two broken bridges across the gully opposite the Flower House.

West Bank and pipeline

Post Open Day drought as far as blogging is concerned, things are back to normal with not many interesting items to report on. The weeding, potting, planting etc. has been a bit neglected so it is catch up time as far as that is concerned. Riana has taken the greenhouse under her wing which is a big help and gives us more time to do work in the Reserve itself. We have planted some more trees on the picnic site and have turned our attention to finishing the entrance circle.


Me, after planting a few Widdringtonias. We now put logs around the trees to protect them from marauding mowers. In the background a ringbarked bluegum which is showing signs of stress but refusing to die yet.

At the entrance circle we first put a plastic barrier between the rocks and the soil, hopefully that will keep some of the grass out and, slowly but surely, will be landscaping and planting.

Keith cut down a few suffering coral trees to open up the view. The bare soil will soon be covered with some interesting plants. We have started planting some left-overs from the sale and continued to do so after the pipe work on Saturday. Soon it will look like here on the East Bank.


Then, this past Saturday we cancelled the usual monthly meeting and instead tackled the issue of the leaking pipe I have been reporting on. Thankfully, this time it was no problem to gain access to the property. While Rob an I took care of the ill-fitting join on the lower slope the rest of the crew (Cathy, Ellie, Merika, Keith, Mark, Neil) found and dug up the join between the poly pipe and the cement pipe. There was a fair bit of earthmoving involved, many hands made light work. The rolling out of the coils of pipe is an interesting exercise to keep it from corkscrewing or kinking.

Judging by the big lump of concrete we didn’t mess around when we installed it initially.

After that we fed the new pipe through the old and crumbling cement pipe and managed to connect the whole lot up to the new stopcock on the other side of the railway line. Our whole pipeline is now good, new pipe so hopefully our water supply will be a bit more reliable.

It had been a cold and windy day so afterwards we treated ourselves to coffee and delicious chocolate cake in the Fovs room, a bit rushed for some who had places to go to but Ellie and I still had time to go to the arboretum to check on the water there and were very pleased to find that the water pressure was back to normal.