Focus on Hampstead Park Veggie Garden


FOHP has 57 members and 188 people on the mailing list, yet we hardly manage to get anyone to join us for the work parties.  Do you have any ideas of how we can boost participation? 

We clean and beautify our four parks with work parties once a month during summer.  This doesn’t give us much time to do all the things we would love to do, but we can achieve wonders with many more helping hands. 

It’s a great opportunity for Harfielders to meet their neighbours, exchange news, teach their young ones how to plant and weed – and for those who can’t bend and work, they can just sit in the shade and chat.
This is an Organic Community GardenThe idea is that residents can stroll down to pick a few leaves for a fresh salad and we encourage a diversity of wild life in the garden (birds, bees, butterflies, ladybirds, chameleons, etc.)

Permaculture principles are followed in the garden so we ask that NO poisons, herbicides or inorganic fertilizers are used, instead, we encourage the use of worm juice, mulch and manure.  Please Google Permaculture to find out more about this lovely way of bringing food into our lives.

Hart’s Nursery in Ottery has fantastic compost/mulch and good organic fertilizers, and inexpensive veggie seedlings that have been organically grown.  They also have Volcanic Dust which, although a bit pricey, is loaded with all the micro nutrients that plants need.   

Right on our doorstep is Julip Nursery – newly opened on Imam Heron Road, next to Manny’s Fish & Chips shop.  Chris and Jules have a wide variety of herbs and seedlings. 

FOHP get donations of horse manure so contact Gail (number below) if you need some for a bed in Hampstead Park.

Don’t forget to dot some colourful flowering Marigolds and Nasturtiums around your bed.  They’re beneficial for the soil and act as sacrificial plants – a lot of insects favour them instead of the veggies.

Feel free to pick produce from the garden in exchange for work done – but with consideration to others who also want to harvest, so please only take enough for one meal at a time.  A few leaves from a couple of plants can be harvested from all leafy green vegetables.  This way the plant will keep producing without needing to be replaced.

Francine, our unofficial Vegetable Garden Manager, can be found in the veg garden most Thursdays at around 2pm should you wish to discuss anything.

We’d like to create a narrow bed on the outside of the wooden fence – a hedge planted with indigenous Rosemary alternating with Rose-scented Geranium bushes at every 2nd fence post.   In the short section of fence in front of the entrance we’d like to have Lavender.  The idea is to attract pollinators like bees and butterflies and fill the air with fragrance.

Along the inside of the length of the wooden fence, we want to plant Granadilla creepers.

We need more pavers or bricks for creating walkways between the beds.  Please be careful around the areas where you see pottery tops and lids sticking out, these have underwater clay irrigation bowls or pipes.  So only use a hand trowel when digging around them.  

Dogs are a problematic in this area as they often trample newly planted items; we’re trying to keep “fencing” as neat as possible and slowly accumulating the little sections of fencing that join together.  

Gail can be contacted on 082 897 2672 to discuss ideas or new projects.

Princes Park Work Party               Saturday 22 October
Surrey Park Work Party                 Sunday 11 December
Purley Park Work Party                 Sunday 20 November 
GARDEN COMPETITION          Sunday 6 November 
Kind regards
FOHP COMMITTEE – Gail, Ingrid, Tina, Christine, Francine and Caroline

Join our facebook page and keep up to date with our activities!

Small pets = regret purchase!

We receive calls daily at Animal Rescue Organisation from people who are trying to get rid of their small pets. 

Their kids begged them for a small pet which they go off and buy at a pet shop. 3 months later, the kids are bored and Mom no longer wants to clean and feed yet another dependent. 

Pet shops sell them at a cheap price and make money on the accessories. Pet shops also promise to give you two of the same sex but many customers end up with babies a few months later. A visit to the vet, or to sterilise them, also costs just as much as a visit with your cat. 

We appeal to the public to please consider carefully before purchasing a small pet. Small pets take up just as much time as dogs and cats and are not a quick fix when it comes to getting the kids a pet. 

Anmal Rescue Organisation currently has gorgeous friendly bunnies up for adoption, as well as guinea pigs, so if you are keen to get a small pet then please consider rescuing some unwanted discarded little furries that we have in our care. 

Adoption rules and costs apply. 

Please contact Karen on 021 3965511 or email


Households with aluminium window frames are urged to tighten up security as a new home invasion trend grows. It's reported that criminals remove the window pane by clipping away the rubber beading, which is often poorly installed or of low-grade quality. When installing aluminium windows, homeowners are cautioned to look out for the following:
  • Check that the aluminum window supplier is a credible company.
  • Ask for verifiable references from those installing the windows.
  • Confirm with previous customers that they were satisfied with the standard of work.
  • Physically asses the windows and ensure that three key components are durable; the glass pane, clipped in beading and a wedge-shaped neoprene gasket which locks the beading in place.
  • Cover all window panes with strong burglar bars, not just the ones that open.
It was noted last week that 3 wheelie bins were reported stolen. Residents should note that stolen bins must be reported to SAPS and a case number obtained before you can apply to the City of Cape Town for a replacement bin. Bins should be kept on your property until the scheduled refuse collection day.
The City can levy a tariff on a resident if it is found that the bin was stolen from the pavement on a day other than the scheduled collection day. Further information on how to replace your bin can be found here.

Kind regards            +27 (0)81 412 6109

The Restraint of Trade contract

A subject that is mired in misunderstanding, wishful thinking and bad market Intel is the issue of a Restraint of Trade.

A Restraint of Trade is a contract, agreed between an employer and an employee.
It is created by the employer to protect them from loss of valuable IP that the employee would have been exposed to during their employment with the company. Typically this includes things like intellectual property, operating methodologies, client and trade secrets etc.
The contract places restrictions on what company information the outbound employee can share with other companies, as well as limit how quickly the employee can join a competitor company.

While the inclusion of a restraint agreement, from a commercial perspective is understandable, the agreement also has to be reasonable. An employer cannot prevent a departing employee from earning a living.

Here are six of the most common misconceptions around restraint of trade -
  • Restraints are not legally enforceable 
  • Restraints are legally enforceable, in South Africa and overseas

  • A restraint is not valid if you are not financially compensated for it
  • Not all restraints come with financial compensation
  • Payment is not necessary to enforce a restraint
  • Your restraint is lifted if you pay back the money
  • Not necessarily so. It depends on the individual circumstances and the contract wording. The final decision lies in the hands of the contract provider. 
  • Confusion between ‘Retention Bonuses’ with ‘Restraint of Trade’.
  • The purpose of a retention bonus is to encourage key members of staff to stay with the company over a critical or extended period of time – and these are not always linked to restraint clauses
  • If the employee only has a retention bonus clause, paying back the money may release them from any further restrictions, but the terms and conditions of the clause must be read carefully – the document could be a combination of retention and restraint.
  • Restraints are only valid for a few months
  • Not true - contracts vary. The average restraint period in South Africa is 1-year post departure, but restraints are getting longer, in some cases issued for up to three years, but this is rare.
  • Restraint periods and Notice periods are separate issues
  • The average notice period in South Africa is one month, but the more senior you are the longer your notice period. Three to six months notice periods are not unusual.
  • Once you have worked out your notice period and left the company, only then does your restraint of trade restriction start.

Restraints have their value, especially in the skills-challenged areas. But the implementation and acceptance should be given much thought.
This is a summarised article and not intended to serve as legal advice or a definitive or exhaustive analysis of the subject matter.

About the Author

After several years in corporate finance and a decade in c-suite executive search, Madge Gibson now heads up The CHANGE Initiative (Pty) Ltd – a Career Management and Outplacement company based in South Africa.

Take a step back. and think about the why, when, where, what

As we all know, good nutrition is an important component of a balanced healthy life, but we sometimes get lost as to what good nutrition is!  The basics are easy, eat lots of vegetables and fruit, choose whole grains, eat low fat dairy and lean meat, include healthy plant fats, and avoid processed and junk food.  But is that getting you where you want to go with your weight and health goals? 

This is because, although these are really important points, they are not the crux to healthy balanced eating.  Your eating habits and behaviours are almost more important!  Some points to keep in mind are:
  1. Eating enough (too little will slow down the metabolism)
  2. Eating regularly (every 3-4 hours is best), starting within an hour of getting up
  3. Eating more during the day and only having a small supper

When you get into a healthy eating ROUTINE you will find that your goals are so much easier to attain!  

There is a lot of unnecessary as well as unconscious eating that takes place, and many people eat too much for their daily needs.  We need surprisingly small amounts of food to function…

* Look at why you eat.  Is it because of mouth hunger or stomach hunger?  Stomach hunger is your real physical hunger, while mouth hunger is an emotional need, maybe stress or depression or even boredom!  If you are eating for mouth hunger you could be an emotional eater, an exercise eater, or an association eater.  In identifying your real hunger you might discover that most of your eating isn’t really necessary. 
* Look at when you eat.  Are you someone who skips meals or leaves out breakfast?  By skipping breakfast you delay the start of your metabolism for the day and you will only get hungry much later in the day.  And by skipping meals you cause your blood sugar levels to get very low and you get so hungry that you crave food and especially refined carbohydrates!  And inevitably eat too much.  Eating 5-6 smaller meals a day, starting early, will stabilise your blood sugars and prevent that 4-5pm binge.
* Look at where you eat.  Food not only has a nourishing role to play it is also nurturing.  Shoving food down your throat while driving the kids to school or while working on your computer isn’t nurturing at all and you probably won’t feel satisfied and still be looking for more to eat!  Put time aside for your meals or snacks.  Having that piece of chocolate cake one in a while and enjoying every bit of it isn’t going to do anything to your weight.  It is reaching for that second piece or just carrying on eating junk food for the rest of the day because you ‘blew your diet anyway’ is when the trouble starts.
Look at what you eat!  Keep to the basics.  Lots of fresh, whole, natural foods, less processed food, preferably no junk food and water for thirst.  Base your meals on vegetables, adding lean protein; whole grain carbs, legumes or starchy veg; and plant fat; and have fruit and low fat dairy as snacks.  

And as a go home message, I want you all to remember that you are human – no one expects you to be perfect 100% of the time!

Phone: 021 674 4666 | Cell: 084 206 2715

Patchwork | September in the Garden

Spring has sprung!

Temperatures are steadily increasing and veggies are already speeding up the their growth.

Tip for the month: it's the perfect time to get planting, so try to plant at least one thing if you can. There's nothing better than home grown food!

September's plant list is a big one:
Amaranth, Bush and climbing beans, Broadbeans, Beetroot, Butternut, Cauliflower, Carrot, Chard, Cape Gooseberry, Celery, Chives, Chilli, Cucumber, Eggplant, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leek, Leaf Mustard, Lettuce, Ginger, Globe artichokes, Jerusalem artichokes, Onion, Parsnip, Parsley, Peas, Potato, Pumpkin, Radish, Rhubarb, Sweetcorn, Sweet pepper, Sweet potato, Turnip, Tomato, Watercress, Watermelon, Zucchini

Happy planting, and happy Spring!

Gabriella Garnett

Claremont Chiropractic - Hips & the Sacroiliac Joints

Barrie Lewis - Hips & the Sacroiliac Joints
(edited for length from the Chiropractic Help series)

Hips and the sacroiliac joints are undeniably linked; what's more it's often a chicken and egg situation. More likely a hereditary hip condition like dysplasia is the cause of the sacroiliac joint pain, but we suspect chronic SIJ subluxations can be the underlying cause of hip arthritis; it's difficult to prove, or disprove for that matter. Both of course are intrinsically part of the pelvis. Thus a condition in the hip joint itself, if it changes the gait, can immediately have a knock on effect on the sacroiliac joint.

The hip is in addition subject to various anomalies, one of which is the femoro acetabular impingement syndrome; it comes in two forms, further muddying the water, as it affects the movements of the hip in different ways; thus the effect on the SIJ differs. FAIS as it is known, affects the movements of the ball in the socket, and has a profound knock on effect on the sacroiliac joints. Reduced flexion, adduction and internal rotation are the common features; this may be severe in certain cases, mimicking hip arthritis, which it isn't. Meralgia paresthetica also needs to be considered (an impingement of the lateral femoral cutaneous nerve in the groin) producing not dissimilar numbness and pain in the leg.

In short, hips and the sacroiliac joints are intimately connected causing headaches for your chiropractor; pain in the groin, side of the hip, buttock and sacroiliac joints, often radiating down the front or side of the leg are common features; and it all begins with the young adult, but doesn't usually surface until later.

The treatment of femoro acetabular impingement syndrome remains controversial; surgeons like to remove the spurs. Chiropractors look to mobilising the hip and adjusting the sacroiliac joints, and deep soft tissue work in and around the hip. Neither constitute a cure; the pincers grow back and continued management of the hips and the sacroiliac joints remains important for chiropractors; otherwise the pain comes right back.

Some cases need a treatment once every four to six weeks; say about ten treatments a year which will keep the condition under control. Conceptually it's little different to the management of incurable medical conditions like diabetes, for example; the patient has to take responsibility for home care of his or her condition.

A Case Study

Mrs B, a 53 year old woman, presented at the chiropractic coalface with severe, debilitating right hip, groin and sacroiliac joint pain. Hip flexion, adduction, internal rotation, and the Patrick's Faber test were all limited and painful. The adductor magnus muscle and the hip capsule were extremely tender on palpation, but the area under the inguinal ligament where the lateral femoral cutaneous nerve exits from the pelvis was not tender; nor was there any sensory change on the side of the thigh; conclusion, this is not meralgia paresthetica.

X-rays revealed pincers in both hips, confirming the diagnosis of femoro acetabular impingement syndrome.

I adjusted this lady's sacrum and ilium, mobilised the hip and did deep, painful soft tissue work in and around the hip joint. After the first treatment she felt 20% relief of pain, after the second 70%; in other words significant immediate relief. But it's not a cure and ongoing care, both by the patient who must exercise daily and the chiropractor who must keep his wits about him are essential.


(Quickly before they go out of season)

2 ripe Avocados
4/6 anchovies
8 olives
6 Tablespoons Olive Oil
Juice of one lemon

Cut up Avocados into small pieces.    Chop up anchovies.  Remove pips from olives and slice.
Mix oil and lemon juice and pour over salad. 



As many of you have been following the progress of ‘Dexter’ the Scottish Wheaten Terrier on our FB page, this month we will be focusing our article on Canine Atopic Dermatitis (or Atopy) in the dog. Although we are still in the process of diagnosing the possible cause of his symptoms, Atopy is the most likely.


CAD is one of the most common allergic skin conditions seen in dogs worldwide causing severe itching and inflammation. The Yorkshire terrier, Schnauzer, Boxer and Scottish Terriers are just some of the breeds that are genetically predisposed to this condition. Symptoms usually begin at an early age (6 mths – 3 years) compared to other skin conditions.

CAD is linked to the antibodies the body produces in response to environmental allergens. The skin, which is the bodys first line of defence, usually forms a strong barrier against potential allergens. In the allergic dog, the top layers of the skin are often defective, thus allowing absorption of these allergens.

What is it caused by?

‘Hay fever’ sufferers will know that they are usually not allergic to just one allergen but to many, for example, grass, pollen, dust mites, etc. CAD works in the same way, as there can be numerous allergens such as dust mites, pollens, mould spores, danders, insects, food etc all contributing to the cause. The diagram below may help you understand how the body reacts when over sensitised.

What are the symptoms?

Primary Lesions:
  • Constant scratching and biting of face, feet, ears, abdomen, causing areas of abnormal pigmentation
  • Reddened and raised skin lesions


Secondary Lesions:
  • Hair loss 
  • Bacterial infections
  • Yeast and Fungal infections
  • Ear infections
  • Erosion of the skin due to scratching rubbing or biting
  • Thickening and leathering of the skin
  • Scabs and crusting
Clinical signs often occur seasonally but may be seen year-round as the condition persists.

How is it diagnosed?

Because of the complexity of this disease, diagnosis is extremely challenging .A good history and a full dermalogical examination is essential in recognising the first clinical signs of this condition. Your vet will need to determine:
  • age, breed, sex and home environment of your pet
  • the type and distribution of any lesions.
  • presence of parasites and their contribution to the problem
  • the possibility of a food allergy
  • presence of any secondary infections
Your vet may need to take skin scrapings, a skin biopsy and swabs to test for parasites and secondary bacteria and yeasts.

“ Ultimately, the diagnosis of CAD is made based upon signalment, typical history, presentation of compatible clinical signs, and the systematic exclusion of all other pruritic skin diseases. There is no single test for CAD. It is a clinical diagnosis made by exclusion of other differentials.”(1)


“CAD cannot be cured. Client education is important, because this is a lifelong disease that requires lifelong management and regular progress checks.”(2)

Once your vet has an overall picture of the problem they will be able to establish a treatment protocol, which could include any if not all of the treatments below:

  • effective treatment for external and internal parasites, like fleas and worms 
  • eliminate secondary bacterial and/or fungal infections
  • bathing with hypoallergenic and medicated shampoos
  • topical therapies, such as sprays and creams
  • antihistamines
  • supponovel food trials
  • Cortisone 
  • Cyclosporine
  • Non-steroidal anti inflammatory drugs
  • Constant assessment of the animal

“Is the practice of administering increasing quantities of an allergen extract to an allergic subject to ameliorate symptoms associated with subsequent exposure to the causative allergen”. (2)

Allergen specific immunotherapy (ASIT) is available but extremely costly. In this treatment the animal is slowly ‘desensitized’ to specific allergens that it has shown to be hypersensitive to. Firstly, intradermal and serum tests are undertaken in order to determine which allergens the animal is most sensitive to. Unfortunately these tests are not available in South Africa and samples must be sent overseas.

“The mechanism of action of ASIT is complex and not fully understood. Essentially, the pet is “desensitized” to specific allergens to which it has demonstrated hypersensitivity, and immune tolerance is induced. In dogs, the expected time to response is roughly 4-12 months”.(3)

In Conclusion

Canine Atopic Dermatosis is a complex disease that requires lifelong treatment. There is no quick fix and owners need to understand that adherence to treatment protocol is of the utmost importance. As we have seen with Dexter, once an animal is diagnosed and the condition is treated consistently, it does not take long to see amazing results.

‘Successful management requires a basic understanding of the complexity of the disease, an accurate diagnosis, control of secondary problems, institution of a comprehensive management plan, and frequent reassessment.’(4)

Further Reading:

Anne Makin - Practice Manager
Kenilworth Veterinary Hospital, 47 Kenilworth Road, Kenilworth, 7708
Tel: 021 6715018     Fax: 021 6715019


Recently the possibility that a property purchaser can become liable for historic debts on a property (ie debts older than two years), was highlighted in the news. This followed on the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) judgment in City of Tshwane v Mitchell in January this year in which the court clarified the wording of section 118(3) of the Municipal Systems Act.

1. Rates clearance for a property transfer v historic debts

Before the judgment is explained, it is necessary to distinguish section118(3) from the more commonly known section 118(1) of the Act. The latter provides that a property transfer may not be registered without a municipal Rates Clearance Certificate indicating that payment has been made in respect of service fees, levies, rates and taxes for the property for the preceding two years. A property purchaser therefore knows, once transfer is passed, that the preceding two years' rates have been paid.

Section 118(3), on the other hand, holds that an amount due for "municipal service fees, surcharges on fees, property rates and other municipal taxes ... is a charge upon the property." This meant, so the SCA confirmed, that section 118(3) creates a hypothec, or lien, which operates in favour of a local municipality to secure amounts owing for rates, services and "other municipal taxes, levies and duties", and that this hypothec is not extinguished by the transfer of property to a new owner. 

Therefore the debt is tied to the property, not the individual, and new owners can justifiably be held liable for these debts. A municipality may take legal action against a new owner of a property for all historic debts relating to the property older than 2 years (but not older than 30 years as prescription would then be a factor). The Court noted that this was the position regardless of whether the property was purchased by means of an agreement between parties, or through a sale in execution.

2. But …

(i) The SCA qualified the municipality's rights to act in terms of section 118(3) by holding that, in order to enforce the provisions of section 118(3) in the recovery of historic debt, the municipality must first comply with its own by-laws. In most instances this requires the exhausting of all other remedies before proceeding in terms of section 118(3) against an 'innocent' purchaser/new owner of land. 

Most municipalities have credit control and debt collection policies which lay down, amongst other things, how the municipality will deal with defaulters. A municipality cannot therefore act against the 'innocent' owner/purchaser in terms of section 118(3) if it had not implemented its own steps with regard to collecting the outstanding debt from the previous owner(s) who incurred the debt.

(ii) The SCA also specifically mentioned that it had to be "remembered, at this point, that the constitutionality of s 118(3) of the Act is not in issue in this matter". It is an indication that the SCA probably considers that the section can be attacked on constitutional grounds, something likely to happen in future.

3. Going forward
The implications for property owners are huge. This means that a municipality can take legal action against the present owner of a property for any other amounts owing by any prior owner of that property up to 30 years ago, provided the municipality exhausted internal remedies and complied with its own policies and by-laws. This action can range from suing for the old owner's debts and attaching and selling the property itself.

What a purchaser can do, is to do a thorough investigation into the chances of any old debt popping up, and deal with it in the sale agreement. Purchasers need to insist that sellers pay all amounts owing to the municipality when passing transfer. 

This can be done by way of warranties from the seller that there is no outstanding municipal debt in respect of the property, and an indemnification in favour of the purchaser that should any future claim relating to outstanding municipal debt arise against the purchaser (or any of its successors or assigns), as the new owner of the property, the seller shall indemnify the new owner for such claims. (Unfortunately these contractual protections will not be obtainable in sales of execution where the property is disposed of by the Sheriff.)

Speak to a specialist property practitioner before you sign an agreement to sell or purchase a home, to ensure that all your interests are addressed. 

Contact Martin Sheard of our Claremont office on

STBB Claremont