Durban - Cut your lawns short and leave for the next few months. Most lawns go semi-dormant in winter with very little growth. Lawns will grow slowly for the next two to three months before the first spring rains. No need to feed or top dress until spring. Every so often give it a little sprinkle of water.
Cut back to a third of their size many of the early winter flowering shrubs such as Plectranthus ecklonii, large spurflower, and Tecoma capensis, Cape honeysuckle. Wait until the other winter flowering shrubs have finished flowering before pruning. This includes Hypoestes aristata and Leonotis leonurus which will finish flowering in the next few weeks.
Repot your pot plants. Remove plants from the pots, remove all the old soil from around the roots, wash the roots well in a bucket of water, remove any diseased or dried roots and, using fresh new soil, repot into the same pot. Remove any dying leaves. If the pot is too small for the plant, buy a bigger pot before repotting. Add some slow-release fertiliser to each pot.
If you have orchids, do not water them because by stressing the plants you encourage flowering. In particular Dendrobium, Calanthe, Oncidium. If you need to feed, use Chemicult or add a slow-release fertiliser to each pot which will encourage the existing buds to push better flower spikes.
Plan any new plantings during the dry winter months. It is very difficult doing much planting during the drought but if you have access to water through a borehole then plant trees and shrubs now for spring.
Plant winter flowering shrubs and groundcovers, in particular Crassula multicarva (fairy Crassula), crassula ovata (kerky bush), Hypoestes aristata (ribbon bush), Leonotis leonurus (wild dagga), Strelitzia reginae (bird of paradise), Euryops pectinatus (daisy bush), Plectranthus zuluensis (zulu spur flower), Zantedeschia aethiopica (arum lily), Tetradenia riparia (Iboza), Cotyledon orbiculata (Pigs ears), kniphofia sp (red hot poker), Barleria obtusifolia (bush violet) and Stapelia gigantea (giant stapelia), Dombeya burgessiae (pink wild pear). Very fragrant at night.