Know Your Fynbos

Know your fynbos: Enamoured by everlastings

Have you ever thought it a little strange to hear hikers recounting beautiful ‘fields of Cape Snow’ in the middle of the Cape summer? Syncarpha vestita is indeed our very own form of ‘Cape Snow’ when, between the months of November and January,1 our mountainsides...

Know your fynbos: The private life of pelargoniums

Perhaps the most brilliant feature of pelargoniums is their aromatic scent. Sweet rose, citrus and peppermint are just some of the fragrances you’re likely to get a whiff of while walking through the fynbos with any of these bright, evergreen shrubs are around. Commonly known as...

Know Your Fynbos: Secrets of Serruria

If Serruria doesn’t sound familiar to you, then the infinitely more romantic ‘blushing bride’ might. The Serruria genus (part of the Proteaceae family) boasts 55 species,1 of which the exquisite Serruria florida or blushing bride, is one.   Doting gentlemen and blushing brides The name ‘blushing bride’ is...

#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...

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...

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...

New challenge: Get to know your fynbos

One of the most awe-inspiring things about the Cape Floral Kingdom (CFK) is how much more there is to it than meets the eye. What could easily appear to be a monotonous carpet of dull scrubland is really just the opposite: an abundant plant paradise,...