Spring is in the air, and it's a South African tradition to welcome the new season by planting trees.
From 1 to 7 September, South Africa celebrates National Arbor Week and accredited garden centres around the country are committed to stocking a wide selection of healthy, indigenous and environment-friendly specimens.
There's usually space in the garden for another tree, whether it's one that will grow to be a forest giant, or something much smaller to attract birds. Trees don't live for ever so now is a good time too, to look carefully at older specimens and any lingering alien invaders and consider making a replacement.
Syzygium cordatum is the 2012 Tree of the Year. It bears fragrant flowers followed by red-purple fruits enjoyed by birds and humans, and is great for gardens in need of natural screening or a tall hedge.
Trees are for everyone, even for those who don't have a patch of garden. Many species are happy living in a container on a balcony and the ancient art of bonsai makes it possible to accommodate a tree in even the tiniest of apartments.