Author:Kate Black

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#KnowYourFynbos: Gorgeous gladioli

A couple of months back, on a rainy-day hike in the Elgin area, I was lucky to put my foot down next to an exquisite flower called the Brown Afrikaner (Gladiolus maculatus). The buttercup-yellow and maroon-speckled treasure had popped up right in the middle of...

#KnowYourFynbos: Fabulous vygies

Like fireworks in the fynbos, once a year when spring arrives, thousands of vygies erupt in an explosive carnival of colour. Bees, butterflies and insects are drawn to the ‘bright lights’, as clusters of pink, purple, yellow, orange, red and white blossoms pop up across...

Elgin’s shared secret: The Groenlandberg

The concept of nature as a shared resource is seldom heartily embraced like it is in Elgin’s Groenlandberg Conservancy. Built around a patchwork of various, private tracts of land, this growing movement is the result of a collective of forward-thinking landowners with shared values in...

Know Your Fynbos | Ericas: Miniature bells

I defy you not to love Ericas. One of the most exquisite plant genera in the Cape Floral Kingdom, and also the largest, the Erica genus is made up 860 species worldwide, and we are extraordinarily lucky to have 760 of those species here in...

An icy Sneeuberg summit: Conquering the Cederberg’s highest peak

All the familiar landmarks came into focus: a miniature Wolfberg Arch; a tiny Maltese Cross; the peaks of Tafelberg and Sneeukop, sitting below us for a change. From Krakadouw to the north, to the Groot Winterhoek and Matroosberg mountains further south, the bird’s-eye-view below us...

Women’s Month: TMF’s fearless female trio

In keeping with Women’s Month, I spent some time ‘behind the scenes’ at the Table Mountain Fund HQ, where I learned a bit more about the dynamic female trio that manages and coordinates the Fund and its projects on a daily basis. The fast-evolving world...

Know Your Fynbos | Let’s talk Leucadendrons

Leucadendron: a rather serious-sounding title for this lively fynbos shrub that we see dotted across the mountain in a rainbow of different hues. Its common name ‘conebush’ sounds quite ordinary too, but species like silver tree, spinning top, golden sunshine and silky-ruff begin to paint...

#KnowYourFynbos | The private life of proteas

Proteas are to fynbos what salt and pepper are to the spice rack: the golden children. The dazzling King Protea is our national flower - an iconic symbol of South African heritage - and proteas of all shapes and sizes are celebrated in décor and...