Oh Christmas tree, oh Christmas tree – let me know more about your history
9 December 2014
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It is that time of the year again! St. Nick is making his final checks and getting his reindeer all geared up. The mistletoe is being strung up and the aroma of feasts and cookies hang in the air. Yes, it is time again for Christmas.

Whilst not as popular a tradition in South Africa, as for our friends in the North, there is a certain appeal to having a live Christmas tree, as compared to its plastic counterpart. Live Christmas trees (preferably potted and not chopped), bring a beautiful ethereal look (and smell) as your celebrated centrepiece and can perhaps even be recycled in your garden, long after the festivities.

Traditionally, the Evergreen fir tree or conifer is used as Christmas trees. Evergreens, as the name suggests has leaves throughout the year and is always green.

The first documented use of a tree at Christmas was in the town square of Riga, the capitol of Latvia in the year 1515. Since then, Pagans used the branches of firs to decorate their homes during the Winter solstice. The Romans used fir trees to decorate their temples during the festival of Saturnalia and Christians use it as a sign of everlasting life with God.

Besides Evergreens, many other trees are used for festivities all over the world. Whichever your choice, perhaps Christmas can be a little greener this year, with a new live addition.
We’re in the full swing of spring and what a busy month October has been
6 November 2014
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TreeCo News
We are proud to announce that the TreeCo team is rapidly expanding and growing. We have rebagged +- 3 500 trees in the last month and a half. Still for upgrading, we will be planting another 3 000 trees (50L-100L) before Christmas and 7 000 6L trees. All trees organically grown!

Travelling around this month from Worcester, to the Woodstock Old Castle Breweries, we are so fortunate, to not only make some new customers happy at Klein Eikeboom farm, but also to have repeat business with Otten and Partners at the Old Castle Brewery in Woodstock.

Just to make this month even more amazing, we have also finally completed our part in changing people’s lives with our project in Manenburg. What an interesting project it has been! Dodging bullets and stones (literally), we planted an amazing 187 large trees, all standing proudly.

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for all the latest happenings.
Things that you didn’t know about trees
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Yes, there is the photosynthesis (regulates the air quality and produces loads of oxygen) thing, which is just all kinds of cool. They also prevent erosion and moderates ecosystems. There is so much more to trees than the obvious.

Trees can help with crime prevention. Studies have found that neighbourhoods with larger trees experience less crime then neighbourhoods with smaller trees. The conclusion of the study indicated that larger trees seem to serve as a proverbial safety net.

They also “talk” to each other. No, really. Certain types of trees send chemical warnings when under attack from insects. The chemicals they secrete not only warn the neighbouring trees, but also reduce the nutritional value of the leaves, leaving the insects with the human equivalent of rice crackers. Once the neighbouring trees receive the warning, they also send the message on.

Trees also get stressed, believe it or not. They are sensitive to their environment and if the ecosystem gets disrupted, the stress can inhibit a it’s growth and photosynthesis cycle.

Who knew?
The Golden Goddess, a delicate-leafed hedge bamboo
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Featured Trees
The Golden Goddess is a delicate-leafed hedge bamboo, which is a great addition to any landscape, especially smaller gardens or as a container plant.

The Bambusa family includes between 100 and 120 species, most very popular because of their beautiful foliage.

This attractive plant can not only be pruned to create small hedges, but can be pruned into whichever shape works well in your garden. For this reason, the Golden Goddess a very versatile showstopper for your landscape, although like most grasses, it has unremarkable flowers.

It spreads much slower and much less aggressively than runner bamboo, which is ideal for vertical gardens as well. This particular bamboo can grow up to 10 feet tall and thickens up well. It is also quite resilient to very hot and cold conditions and makes a wonderful evergreen addition to any garden.
Spring starts in full swing
10 October 2014
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TreeCo News
What a busy month this has been for TreeCo.
Spring time is THE time to start growing, so we started this season with a bang.

TreeCo is in the process of organically planting more than four thousand trees into containers, ranging from 20lt to 100lt.

A big thank you to Cape Contours, who placed a big order for Spring time. We had our hands (and our bakkies) full with a Friday delivery of 140 trees to
Buh Rein Estate, it is going to look amazing.

We also had the privilege of working with the DGB group placing four trees creating a wonderful landmark which you will see as you enter Franschoek.

For more of our current happenings and to see the photos of what we have been up to, please follow us on Facebook.
Meet the Oak
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Introducing the attractive Quercus Robur, more commonly known as the English Oak, also known as the French Oak.

Native mainly to Europe, this Oak is a symbol of persistence and stability. The Vikings regarded it as the Tree of Thor (God of Thunder).

The English Oak is not only planted for forestry, producing durable heartwood (wood more resistant to decay due to a natural chemical transformation), but is also useful in homeopathic remedies. Querc, otherwise known as Quercus Robur Glandium Spiritus, is derived from the acorn kernels produced by the English Oak and has been used in remedies for alcoholism, spleen complaints and even vertigo.
We rise by lifting others
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TreeCo News
What better way to give back to communities and aid the environment by planting trees. Benefits of nurturing trees are that they…

clean the air
combat the greenhouse effect
save water
provide oxygen

…and so much more.

With this in mind, we set about doing our bit for the community this month by donating about one hundred trees to the counsellor of Mitchells Plain. The trees will be planted by community members as part of a greening project.

We are so happy that we also managed to save four Quercus Roburs and put them in bags. They will recover and stabilise at our nursery over the next year or so. Once recovered, these amazing English Oaks will stand proud for a very long time, in the gardens of some lucky clients.

Trees give so much, how many have you planted lately?
Spring has sprung
3 September 2014
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So, Spring is looming it's pretty, oh so pretty head and you are getting THAT feeling. You want a change, a fresh start and your "to do" list is just getting longer.

A good place to start is to get those shears and start pruning! Most trees and shrubs benefit from annual pruning. We are talking feel-like-new makeover for your gorgeous trees and shrubs. Pruning keeps them in good shape by getting rid of diseased and deceased wood and encouraging new growth.

So what are you waiting for? Get snip, snip, snipping! A word of advice though - early spring bloomers could lose some blossoms if they get their trims too soon. Make sure to check on the bloom time of your trees and shrubs, but let it be said that even the early bloomers can sacrifice a few blooms if they are in need of a good shaping.
Feeling handy? Some helpful hints…
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That fresh scent of spring is in the air! Out with the old, in with the new. Basically, new beginnings, pool parties, braaing, fun, sun and best of all...welcoming gardens filled with colour and fragrance. Now is the time to get a head start on making your garden look it's absolute best.

Here are a few tips to consider for getting spring ready:

Assess your yard.
What needs pruning?
Any tree limbs overhanging structures?
Check it all - fences, foliage, pathways - the whole shebang.
Sharpen your tools (or acquire some) and choose new plants for this growing season.
Prepare new beds by removing debris and start planting early.

Not too much for a heavenly haven, right? Since you will be on a roll once started, why not also start a compost pile?
Oh, and don't forget the birds - they will be ever so grateful if you take the time to clean all bird feeders and baths!
Wishing you a wonderful Spring time!
Alien invasion
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You've entertained the idea of a few changes around the garden. Now you've read our handy tips to get Spring ready and your mind is set. You are going for it!

A fair warning dear gardener. Aliens are among us and they do not (always) come in peace. Choosing a wrong tree for your home can have dire long term consequences on your property.
Alien invasive species (not a Saffa) have a huge negative impact on our South African environment. Bad stuff. Long story short, alien invasive can be put into 3 categories in South Africa.

Category 1: The alien "take-me-to-your" leader. Invader plants must be removed and destroyed immediately.

Category 2: Invader plants must be grown under controlled conditions only.

Category 3: Invader plants that may not be planted anymore. Be aware and make sure to stay proudly South African.
Deeds of giving are the very foundations of the world
5 August 2014
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TreeCo News
The 18th of July, Mandela day, signifies a day of giving back for all South Africans. TreeCo was happy to give back by donating 20 trees. Trees were planted around the sports field and jungle gym at the Kensington SHAWCO Community Centre. SHAWCO foundation will also be planting 20 trees around schools in underprivileged areas and TreeCo is thrilled to support such a wonderful initiative.

In the spirit of giving, TreeCo is honoured to have started our biggest project to date – working in Manenburg to boost the morale of the community.

TreeCo also had a lot of fun on the 2nd of August at the Green Forest Trail Run, where Rudi kindly donated an Olea africana as a prize and what a prize it is!

It has been a wonderful and enriching time for TreeCo, with more to come, such as the expansion of our range and supplying plants well in the 4L range.
The majestic giant of our natural forest
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Featured Trees
The indigenous Outiniqua yellowwood tree is well known and well loved amongst South Africans. This majestic beauty can easily be recognized by its impressive size, its blue-grey pointed leaves and smooth bark. In nature it can grow to the height of nearly 45 meters. No need to worry though, should you prefer not to have a “Jack and the Beanstalk” scenario in your backyard! This tree will grow to a modest size in garden cultivation. Its natural distribution is to be found in the Southern Cape, along the East coast, and all the way up to Mozambique. It is the favourite choice of wood for furniture. However it can also be seen as a favourite choice for hanging a swing or having a picnic in its shade, should you not wish to run a backyard timber shop.
If money grew on trees
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It turns out that money does actually grow on trees! For every R1 you spend on trees in your garden, it adds R5 to your property value. What’s more, trees that are properly placed around your home can reduce air conditioning needs by 30 percent and can save 20 – 50 percent in energy when it comes to heating. Trees are a great way of seeing the seasons change. Deciduous trees can give you shade, and cool down a hot area in summer, while letting the sun through to warm a living area and even the kitchen in winter. The cooling effect of a young healthy tree is equivalent to about ten room sized air conditioners. Since the electricity prices just keep skyrocketing in South Africa, this is reason enough to start planting!