Craftmanship at its best

    When stepping into the factory of Inwood Designs in Blackheath, Cape Town and chatting to Juan about the furniture he manufactures, one can see that this creative young man is passionate about wood and the art of transforming into into something fantastic.

The simplicity of working with a variety of wood working tools, the complexities of drawing out the best part of the wood, and the wood's potential to become a beautiful artwork inspires him, and is visible in the absolute pleasure he takes in creating and finishing off a beautiful piece of furniture.

Juan says that each time he works with a piece of wood, he sees it develop and grow. The wood in its rawest form changes when cut into slabs - the grain becomes more clearer and the colouring of the wood changes - it changes again after it has been sanded smooth, again when it is crafted into a furniture item, when sanded the last time, and lastly when sealed and varnished.

Inwood Designs' furniture is hand crafted with the attention to detail that is hard to find nowadays, due to the mass production of cheap furniture for retail outlets. It is inspiring to see the wood working craft in the hands of a young person like Juan, putting special attention into ensuring that his furniture is made solidly, the surfaces extremely smooth, and his finishing edges and detailing are perfect. He looks at each piece of wood and tries to showcase and bring out the best in each item - the result is an excellent quality and elite piece of furniture.

See more at Inwood Design's website.

Inwood Design

A quadrocopter

Parrot, a technology producer, showcased their latest technology last year in an orchestrated air show, with eight AR Drone 2.0's all moving in unison to music.

For those who do not know what an AR Drone is, it is a radio controlled flying quadrotor helicopter (more commonly known as a 'quadrocopter') that can be controlled and flown using an app on an iPhone or iPad. The direction of the AR Drone is controlled by tilting the mobile device, and by releasing it the AR Drone is instantly stabilised.

As the quadrocopter is flown, video can be recorded via the 720P HD onboard camera and sent directly to the pilot's mobile device, allowing the him/her to view the camera feed in real-time on their mobile device.

The AR.Drone 2.0 can be programmed to fly in a particular direction and record remote video for a selected length of time, and with a simple click the video can be uploaded from the user-friendly interface seamlessly to YouTube. For pilots looking to shoot longer videos, a USB plug-in has been added for larger recording storage. With the new piloting application, everything is simple and done wirelessly in an instant and is the ultimate low-cost aerial camera that can be used by remote control fans and camera enthusiasts alike.

Parrot recently revealed a few new interesting things up their sleeves for their next generation project - the AR Drone 2.0 Black Box:

First is forthcoming GPS integration which will allow the pilot to geolocate his/her AR Drone via the GPS device. Not only does it keep track of its position, but all that information can be used to create 3D models of every movement, via the AR Drone Academy (part of the AR Drone iOS app), which previously only detailed flight information in 2D.

AR Drone 2.0 Black Box can also store videos directly - with its 4GB of built-in flash memory, it can hold hours of HD video.

Next is a 1500mAh high-density battery. Currently, the AR Drone 2.0 is only capable of five to 10 minutes of flight, even after a full charge. But the new battery will provide 50 per cent additional power, around 18-20 minutes.

Parrot's final project is Director Mode, which is a set of pre-canned instructions that can handle particularly tricky shots. Everything from pans, crane shots, slow downs, and more, which can all be difficult to execute manually, are now all possible with just a button press. These shots can be linked, one after another, for a particularly impressive action sequence and in real time. It also includes a stabilisation system and post-processing tricks to get super clean and smooth shots.

Source : Wikipedia, Tech Radar and Apple Store.

Parrot Drone AR 2.0

Types of garden mulching

The best time-saving measure a gardener can take is applying mulch to their garden beds (vegetable gardens to flower beds). Mulched gardens are more healthy, have less weeds and are more drought-resistant than unmulched gardens.

There are two basic kinds of mulch :

  • Organic mulches include formerly living material such as chopped leaves, straw, hay, grass clippings, kitchen scraps, wood chips, shredded bark, sawdust, pine needles, whole bark nuggets, sawdust, shells, woodchips, shredded newspaper, cardboard, wool, cured animal manure, etc. Many of these materials also act as a direct composting system, such as the mulched clippings of a mulching lawn mower, or other organics applied as sheet composting.
  • Inorganic mulches include gravel, stones, black plastic, and geotextiles (landscape fabrics).

Both mulch types discourage weeds, but organic mulches have the added benefit of improving the soil further as they decompose. Inorganic mulches don't break down and enrich the soil, but under certain circumstances they're the mulch of choice. For example, black plastic warms the soil and radiates heat during the night, keeping heat-loving vegetables such as eggplant and tomatoes cozy and vigorous.

There are two cardinal rules for using organic mulches to combat weeds. First, be sure to lay the mulch down on soil that is already weeded, and second, lay a thick enough layer to discourage new weeds from coming up through it. It can take a 10 - 15 cm layer of mulch to completely discourage weeds, although a 5 - 8cm layer is usually enough in shady spots where weeds aren't as troublesome as they are in full sun.

The mulched area should include as much of the root zone as possible. For beds mulch the entire area, while for individual plants, such as trees, the mulched area should extend at least 1 metre out from the base of the plant. It is advisable to pull the mulch 5cm from the base of plants to prevent bark decay.

Materials used as mulches vary and depend on a number of factors and the following should be taken into consideration : availability, cost, appearance and the effect it has on the soil (including chemical reactions and pH, durability, combustibility, rate of decomposition, how clean it is) as some can contain weed seeds or plant pathogens.

Source: Trees are good


Contemporary modern delight

Greyton is usually associated with old farmhouse style accommodation - elegant, but simple. This Lodge, located in the main street of Greyton, is very deceiving from the outside.

The exterior of the lodge has the traditional farmhouse look - white-washed walls, smooth rounded cement finishes on the top of the boundary and retaining walls and traditional gardens with curving beds and pretty agapanthus, lemon trees and bougainvillea. However, when opening the door and entering the lodge, one is extremely surprised at the elegance of the interior. It has a calm, modern contemporary feel that has had the golden touch of a good interior decorator.

The warm fireplace in the lounge area is the perfect place to enjoy a welcoming glass of wine on a cold or wet day in winter, while the elegant bar stocks a number of locally sourced wines. The dining area is light and warm, giving off the feel of being in a relaxed, homely and friendly establishment, while having the pleasure of looking out the french doors into the green gardens outside.

The rooms in the original 1930's manor house have been refurbished and designed with a clear traditional flair (but with a very stylish and quirky aspect to the interiors) and include beautiful solid wood floors, high ceilings and unique design aspects.

The garden unit's bedrooms and bathrooms are all finished off with neat contemporary modern finishes and good quality linen. Some of the rooms have a modern bath in the bedroom, while others have the shower and bathroom area separated off behind a curtain. The lighting in the bedroom (and bathroom) is soft and embues a sense of luxury and decadence, making this a perfect romantic getaway with someone special.

Fore more information visit the Greyton Lodge website.

Greyton Lodge

Hot News

Preferred partner added

We are proud to announce a new implementation contractor has been added to our preferred partners list - Etherington Aluminium.

Featured Plant

Brachylaena Discolor

Brachylaena Discolor
(Coast Silver Oak)

Family :


Description :

Indigenous medium tree or large shrub to 10m.

Flowering time :

Winter - Spring

Conditions :

  • Sun / Semi-shade
  • Average Water
  • Evergreen
  • Wind resistant
  • Frost resistance
  • Loamy soil

View more detailed information on this plant in our plant directory.

Wine of the month

Wine of the month

Lady in Red

Winery : Doolhof
Winemaker : Friedrich Kuhn

Description :

A warm, rich Bordeaux-styled wine. This lady is seductive, sophisticated and elegant.

Aroma : This garnet red wine has an intense perfumed melange of red and black fruit with cedar undertones.

Palate : The fruit / oak balance is harmonious with soft firm tannins, cassis and plum flavours producing wine of excellent structure.

Winemaking : The blend includes all 5 of the Bordeaux varieties which are each fermented and matured separately for 14 months in 225 litre French oak.

Food Pairing : Roast lamb with garlic and rosemary.

If you want to purchase or require more information on this wine, or if you are interested in a private or corporate tasting, please email Karen or visit her website.

Planting Guide

Herb or Veggie

Seeds can be sown or plants can be planted for the following herbs and veggies this month:


  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Lettuce
  • Radish
  • Spinach
  • Swisschard
  • Tomatoes
  • Turnips
  • Herbs

  • None
  • View our full planting plan in our resources section of our website.

    Brain Teaser

    We all love a chance to test our own brain capacity with brain teasers. Try see if you can figure out this one...

    Brain Teaser

    June's Teaser Answer :
    "Sick in bed"


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    Contact Cheral:

    Cell: 082 82 509 82