It’s Spring! The days are getting longer, and as the strength of the sun gets more powerful, the fabulous fynbos on the Cape Point Route shows her best colours. It’s a glorious time of year to be out celebrating our natural wonders – it’s definitely the time of wildflowers and whales!
Fynbos is a term that means fine bush and is a unique Plant Kingdom relative to the vegetation of the rest of Africa and the world. More than 9000 individual plant species are found in this small area of the Western Cape that represents only 0.04 % of the earth’s surface. Nearly 6000 of these species are endemic (found naturally only in the SW Cape). As a result the Fynbos region has earned the title of the ‘Cape Floral Kingdom‘ from the international botanical community. It is one of only 6 floral kingdoms in the world and was declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco in 2004. The Cape Peninsula alone has over 2500 species, which is more than occurs in all of the British Isles.
The vegetation is dominated by shrubs and a Fynbos expert explained that for simplicity sake the fynbos shrubland can be grouped into 4 major growth forms:
- tall protea shrubs with large leaves (proteoids);
- heath like shrubs (ericoids) including ericas as well as all the other needle leafed species such as buchus, blombos etc;
- wiry reed like plants (restioids). The restios are the diagnostic group in the fynbos and vegetation without restios cannot be fynbos.
- bulbous herbs (geophytes).
Where to See Flowers:
The Roads leading to and from Cape Point fill up with spring flowers in bloom. Don’t get too distracted by the incredible sea views as there are daisy carpers in unexpected corners filled with patches of little white daisies. Pink and yellow daisy carpets decorate the roadside as well.
Hot spots: Kommetjie, Scarborough, Red Hill Road, Glencairn beach and Muizenberg as you head out onto Baden Powell Drive.
Cape of Good Hope Reserve: Host to more than 2000 species of indigenous plants- the reserve is one of the best spots for spring flowers. Don’t rush though, take a walk, hang out at one of the picnic spots and interact with nature and spring in the south. Remember your camera! * Don’t forget SANParks week: 9 -14 Sept 2013. Free entry to the park
Silvermine Nature Reserve: If you drive up Ou Kaapse Weg- the little spring flowers are already out and about but getting into the reserve is a delight and even better when combined with a spring hike. I don’t know the names of all the gorgeous blossoms, but I believe they have wonderful names like white oxalis, pelargoniums, sorrel, gazanias, and watsonias. * Don’t forget SANParks week: 9 -14 Sept 2013. Free entry to the park
How to See Flowers:
Flowers are best viewed on Sunny days when the flowers lift up their beauty and show their faces to the sun! Get close and look at their delicate features – they are not called fine bush for nothing!
Walk or Hike : it’s the best way to get close and the mountains of the Cape Point Route are blooming! You’ll be gobsmacked by the blossoms and mosaics of colour amidst the green fynbos and rusty restios. Read more…
Take a Drive: follow the Cape Point Route and keep your eyes peeled for whales as well as flowers. Click here if you visiting and need to rent a car!
Take a tour: Spring Flower Tours
The Cape Point Nature Photo Tour: From beginners needing advice on camera settings, to advance photographers seeking the best nature shots from the best nature spots on the Cape Peninsula including a variety of wildlife, landscape and seascape, as well as flower photography. Read More…
It’s Macro my Darling: Take this full day photo tour and macro photography workshop to Darling with a professional tour guide and personal photo coach. It’s a one day wonder so book now for the 16th September. Read More…
Where to stay with a garden full of Flowers:
Many of the guesthouses and accommodation establishments have beautiful gardens which are at their most vibrant in Spring. Check out these gorgeous places with stunning gardens filled with fynbos wonders in Spring.
Noordhoek Cottages on the Hill | Noordhoek.
One of the most fabulous fynbos gardens we’ve ever seen. With panoramic Atlantic Ocean and mountain views, a sweeping garden filled with sun birds and sugar birds, a natural rock pool for your swimming pleasure and an organic veggie garden, you will find the days slipping away as you tap into the slower rhythms of nature. Read More…
Cape Point Cottages | Cape Point
2 cottages that lie at the at the foot of the Swartkopberge mountain range, near the gate entrance to the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve. This cottage backs onto the mountainside and provides a base from which to explore the mountain on foot and discover the wonders of our fabulous fynbos. Read More…
Bullrush Cottage | Hout Bay
Bullrush Cottage is a fully equipped, garden cottage on the beautiful southern slopes of Table Mountain in a secure, gated mountain estate in Hout Bay. The cottage is surrounded by an indigenous garden with wonderful mountain views. Within the 34 hectare security estate, one can take a leisurely stroll around the gardens and ponds, which are blooming with fynbos flowers and attract a variety of bird life including home to 5 large leopard tortoises. Read More…
Clovelly Awakenings Guesthouse | Clovelly
This ‘petit’ guesthouse has two main bedrooms and a separate terrace. All rooms have a beautiful view over Silvermine Nature Reserve, wetlands, mountains and dunes and/or the beach. The garden is beautiful: you smell fynbos, the proteas and ‘Mandela Gold’ and there is direct access to garden and Silvermine Nature Reserve. Hiking trail from back of the garden. Read More…
Join the spring-volution… share your fabulous fynbos flower photos with us.
Cape Point Route offers day tours, packages, accommodation, activities and car hire in Cape Town’s south peninsula in addition to teambuilding events in Cape Town. We will happily arrange group activities, transport and extended programmes.
Call 021 782 9356 or visit www.capepointroute.co.za