Home Made Easy – Episode 2

In episode 2 we make the most of outdoor living, by looking at projects that celebrate the wonderful weather we have in South Africa.

Part 1 – Gardening

Gardening in the full sun can have its challenges, but knowing what to look out for when selecting your plants will put you ahead of the game.

Tanya’s favourite sun-loving plants:

Alternanthera – Black Night



Penisetum Fireworks

Sedum Green in flower


  • Helichrysum
  • Salvia
  • Lavender
  • Comfrey
  • Portulaca
  • Delosperma “Wheels of Wonder”
  • Echeveria
  • Sedum
  • Alternanthera “Black Night”
  • Agapanthus
  • Zinnias
  • Pennisetum “Fireworks”
  • Angelonia
  • Echinacea
  • Brachyscome
Tanya’s garden revamp for sun loving plants

Garden bed – BEFORE

Garden bed – AFTER



  • Compost
  • Bone meal (or Superphosphate if your dogs tend to dig)
  • Slow release fertilizer pellets
  • Mulch (Lawn clippings / Bark / leaves)
  1. Remove annuals that have passed their peak.
  2. Add compost, bone meal and slow release fertiliser.
  3. Dig this mixture into your garden bed, to a fork’s length’s depth.
  4. Plant your sun-loving plants.
  5. Cover bare soil with mulch (grass clippings, bark, leaves).
  6. Water the newly planted plants thoroughly, every day for the first week.
Watch the video

Part 2 – DIY

If you are looking for a project that will bring structure to your garden, then an arbour is a great solution. Arbours can define outdoor spaces, to lead you from one section of a garden to the next.

Building an arbour


  • 4 x 2400mm PAR Pine posts
  • 3 x 1000mm PAR Pine support beams (roof structure)
  • 5 x 2000mm PAR Pine later slats (roof structure)
  • 2 x 1800mm x 1000mm Trellises (ready made)
  • Wood Glue (Waterproof)
  • Screws
  • Clamps
  • Measuring tape
  • Drill
  • Wood preservative


  1. Measure out where the roof slats will sit on the support beam of the roof structure. Equal distances ensures a polished look.
  2. Mark out where you pilot holes will pass through the top slats of the roof structure, to secure them to the support beams.
  3. Use wood glue and screws to secure the top slats to the support beams.
  4. Give the entire roof structure an overall sanding, starting with medium grit sand paper, followed by fine grit sandpaper.
  5. For the support posts that will go into the ground and carry the roof structure, simply measure out the desired height (make use of the trellis height to determine this), and mark out the part that will peg into the ground. Use a mitre saw or jigsaw to cut all four posts at the same length and sharp angle.
  6. Apply two coats of a water proofing agent to the parts of the posts that will be going into the ground, to protect it from decay. Always follow product instructions.
  7. To attach the trellis to the two posts, simply clamp into place, drill pilot holes, remove clamps to add wood glue, clamp the post and trellis together again, and secure together using screws. Do the same for the other trellis and set of posts.
  8. To secure the two trellises into the soil, mark out where the posts will go into the ground. Measure the relevant distance between the two trellises (the length of your roof structure), and use your off cuts and a hammer to prepare the cavities in the ground.
  9. Now that your two trellises are secured into the ground, place the roof structure on top of the trellises, clamp into place, drill pilot holes through the roof structure and secure with glue and screws.
  10. Use a wood preservative of you choice to protect your arbour against the elements. There is a variety of products available, from water-based sealents to oil based preservatives.
Watch the video

Part 3 – Décor

Don’t let your patio be a forgotten place. Elle shares some tips and tricks to ensure your outdoor space is inviting.

Elle’s tips for creating a cozy patio


Patio: AFTER

  1. Start by clearing and cleaning the stoep or patio, this allows for a blanc canvass.
  2. Add an outdoor rug, as it defines an area. Look out for a variety of outdoor rugs, made from recycled plastic. They come in different colours and are easy to clean.
  3. When selecting a rug for any room, select a size that fills the space.
  4. Removing furniture from the space allows you to play around with a different layout. You might be surprised to find that a different layout compliments the space and allows for better flow.
  5. When buying furniture for any space, know the room dimensions, so you can select furniture that compliments the room or patio.
  6. Add plants as they bring life to a space. In a smaller space, it is adviseable to keep the pots in the same style, to create a feeling of unison.
  7. Introducing decorative ornaments on a coffee table adds a personal touch.
  8. Soft furnishings like scatter cushions and blankets makes the space inviting and by selecting a colour pallet that compliments your personal style will make you want to spend more time on your patio.
  9. Canvas prints on a wall is a cost-effective option for a covered patio. Applying a clear glaze coating will protect your prints even longer.
Elle’s Gel Fire Pot DIY:

Gel Firepit


  • Concrete pot
  • Gel Fuel / Chaffing Fuel
  • Lava Rocks


  • Place a layer of lava rocks at the bottom of the concrete pot to give some height to the gel fuel.
  • Place gel fuel in the centre of the pot, making sure that it is stable and secure on top of the layer of lava rocks.
  • Fill the rest of the concrete pot with lava rocks.
  • Open the lid of the gel fuel and light using a long match or lighter.
  • Enjoy the subtle glow and heat that the fire pit emits.
Watch the video

Helpful Hints: