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Gardeners in Benoni

Benoni is a town in Gauteng, South Africa, about 40 km east of Johannesburg. Like most small towns in the area, Benoni was established thanks to the discovery of gold on the Witwatersrand reef in the 1880s. The town quickly grew as a mining hotspot, and in addition to more residents Benoni also saw thousands of trees being planted in the new mining district.

Modern-day Benoni is anything but a quaint little town. It has grown into a diverse city stretching no less than 175.55 km². It is also affectionately known as “the city of lakes’ by its residents, due to its four lakes. Along with Alberton, Boksburg, Brakpan, Edenvale, Germiston,Kempton Park, Nigel, and Springs, Benoni makes up the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality.

In 2019, Benoni celebrated its 21st year of “Beautiful Gardens of Benoni”. This annual event highlights a collection of gardens throughout the city regarded as the most neat and visually pleasing. Hosted by the Rotary Anns of Benoni to help raise funds for local charities, this event is a firm favourite of garden lovers all over Gauteng.

What does a Gardener do?

A Gardener is an expert when it comes to the design and maintenance of the plants, flowers, layout, and accessories of gardens. Part of what makes a professional Gardener so valuable is the fact that they know exactly when to plant what, because certain temperatures and conditions are definitely more favourable for certain plants to survive during certain times of the year. Apart from maintaining the health of a garden, a Gardener also needs to harvest the plants at the appropriate time. A Gardener can work in the residential industry (by gardening for family homes) or industrial / commercial spaces (by focusing on the outdoor spaces of hospitals, schools, hotels, etc.).

➣The typical tasks performed by a Gardener

·         Planting flowers and other plants

·         Weeding

·         Pruning

·         Grafting

·         Mowing lawns

·         Building and/or maintaining additional garden features like ponds, benches, etc.

·         Removing dead flora

·         Mixing and preparing insecticides and other products to help treat plant pests

·         Tending garden compost.

Are Gardeners and Landscape Designers / Architects the same?

Although both gardening and landscaping are home improvement professions that centre around plants, rocks and enhancing the natural beauty of outdoor spaces, they are two different occupations.

Gardening can be described as the practice of growing / maintaining plants and ranges from tending to a single plant to an entire yard filled with a variety of flora. These plants can be in either pots or in the ground.

Landscaping is a more upscale form of gardening as in it focuses more on the design (rather than the planting and upkeep) of a garden. It also includes the construction of ponds, sculptures and topiaries. The main aim of landscaping is to organise and enrich an outdoor space (either residential or otherwise) with softscape elements (those that are fluid and change as they mature, like plants) and hardscape ones (refers to the solid, hard elements like pathways, statues, pergolas, etc.). It should be noted that a lot of landscaping companies also include gardening services, but not many Gardeners possess the tools or skills required to do a full-on landscaping project.

What sort of gardens can a Gardener design and maintain?

There are a myriad of different garden designs out there, and each one has quite a few professional Gardeners equipped to deal with the appropriate plants, layout, and maintenance.

With a professional Gardener in charge, you can be treated to a home garden situated right outside your house; a wet garden with growing water plants in or around a pond; a rock garden which uses the elevation created by rocks to place plants in and around the rocks; and many more.

Bear in mind that with gardening, there is very little change in the landscape of the garden. Thus, should you want your flat yard to be transformed into a slanting space with accompanying plants and flowers, you will probably require the services of both a professional Landscape Architect and Gardener.

What to ask a Gardener before they start working for you

The type of project you have in mind for your garden and yard will determine the questions you need to ask the Gardener, as well as the costs involved. However, once the potential professional visits your home (to do a site visit, measure your outdoor space, etc.), feel free to ask them anything in relation to the job or their experience. Some of the most important questions to keep in mind are:

  1. Do you offer a satisfaction guarantee? Not all professionals are ready to make this claim. And as clients have different projects, they come with different individual needs. Make sure you pick a professional and reliable Gardener that will follow your instructions to guarantee satisfaction.
  2. How long have you worked as a Gardener? Seasoned Gardeners definitely have more to contribute to a project.
  3. What kind of training did you receive? If the Gardener is employed by a big gardening- or landscaping company, there is a minimal training period to cover before they are allowed to work with clients. Should the Gardener be reluctant to discuss his training, that should be seen as a red flag.
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