With every DIY project, research and planning are important. Gardening is at the mercy of climate and weather and so knowing what to plant, sow and prune when in your region is essential.

In the age of the internet this information is easier to find than ever. The advice of your local nursery or garden centre is always a good place to start, as is reading the instructions on the seed packets or plant stakes. If, however, you’re doing your planning and research after business hours, the internet is your friend. Here, we can help by pointing you in the direction of some good online plant resources.

What To Plant In Each Month, Season and Region

South Africa is a big country and has several different botanical and climatic regions. This means that what to plant when varies, sometimes greatly, from area to area. Knowing your area and climate will help you make better gardening decisions.

Life is a Garden has a wonderful gardening by month posts like this one for September. These include everything from lawn dressings and pruning to planting and pest control. It even has a section on patio and balcony gardening for this month.

Gardenate has a monthly planting guide strictly for edible plants. The list is selectable by region and each plant has a link to more information on care and cooking.

Sow Delicious has a quick and easy read chart for edible plants grouped by region that’s a great starting point for more research.

Plant Directories

There are thousands of garden plants in South Africa and sometimes you just what information about specific plant.

Life is a Garden has interesting articles about all sorts of plant, grouped by location, use, season and region. Their search function is quite good so if you don’t see what you’re looking for try that. It’s also a wonderful website to poke around.

If you’re planting a kitchen garden, Gardenate has got you covered. It has information on hundreds, possibly thousands of culinary plants, some of which you’ll likely not have heard of before. If you want something different to eat, this is good place to start. There is also a thriving community for questions and comments.

For a general, online plant encyclopaedia Keith Kirsten’s PlantInfo. The directory is expansive and includes everything you need to know about each plant from when and where to plant to watering and maintenance. Each post also includes plant origin and pictures of flowers, foliage and fruit.

Get Gardening

Now that you’ve got ideas, plans and plenty of information, dig out your gardening hat, put on some sun screen and get your hands dirty. Have a look at our seedling tray article and our drip irrigation article for more spring gardening ideas.