Blooming South Africa | Gardenshop

Gardening has long been dominated by men but make no mistake – there are a lot of woman out there that do not hesitate to get their hand dirty. In their quiet way these woman have shaped the landscape all over the globe. This month we are celebrating woman’s month and I would like to celebrate some of the female gardeners that impacted our gardens in South Africa – those ladies who sow the seeds of love and plant the flowers that bring us joy. We would also like to celebrate those woman who are still inspiring us through their gardens making a difference in their communities.

  • Margaret Roberts – (1937 – 4 March 2017) was a South African herbalist and author of over 40 books on herbs and related topics. Margaret Roberts brought herbs into South Africa over 60 years ago and gave lectures about the benefits of herbs and healthy living, her motto was to ‘Educate and Inspire’. The Margaret Roberts Herbal Centre in De Wildt, North West Province was developed by Margaret and is named after her, this continues with her daughter Sandy Roberts who has worked with Margaret for 32 years.
  • Mama Refiloe Molefe  – Since 2007, she’s developed an expansive food garden on abandoned bowling greens, and gives free fresh produce to needy people, especially children in her inner-city community of Bertrams, Johannesburg. She’s built up a loyal customer base and won many accolades, including cash prizes that paid for infrastructure like her greenhouses.
  • Nancy Gardiner – She was born in November 1921 in Durban and grew up on a farm in Hillary. Fascinated by plants, Nancy was forever learning about the natural world, and then teaching others about it too. She wrote over a dozen books, including Gardening in Small SpacesThe Illustrated Book of Houseplants, and The Ultimate Gardiner. In her books, Nancy shared her own imaginative ideas and practical tips along with pages of beautiful photographs which she had personally taken. A true inspiration to all gardening enthusiasts.
  • Joane Pim – The first landscape architect in South Africa. Her name will always be associated with the outstanding designs she created and brought to reality in the mining towns of the Orange Free State and the gardens of the Oppenheimer family at Brenthurst, Parktown, Johannesburg and Mauritzfontein near Kimberley.
  • Lizz Pather – She works as an attorney and runs a women’s empowerment electrical business but between these occupations Lizz has challenged herself to grow something different in her tiny garden in Sunninghill, Johannesburg. Alongside the usual food crops she cultivates in a 2m x 1m vegetable patch and also grows Romanesco, Buddha’s hand and heirloom tomatoes. Lizz plants seeds in trays that she places on the bonnet of her car. The heat from the engine heats up the trays, speeding up germination.

Every day there are many woman in our country who tirelessly spend their time in gardens. They all contribute to feeding communities and to make beautiful spaces where they leave their green fingerprints. I would like to salute all those woman who make South Africa a greener place for all.

Join us this Friday  12 August 2022 for our FREE online workshop on: ‘A Woman’s Garden Retreat’, with Garden Guru Sue Both. 

Please use the following login details to join us at 11am sharp over Zoom:

Meeting ID: 842 3216 9712

Passcode: 193773

or use the following direct link:

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