After reading Amy-Lynn’s post called “The Simplicity of Daisies” over at her blog, I remembered that we had driven up to Clanwilliam last year in August, and that I had taken a pile of photos of the beautiful flowers that we saw there. I’d planned to write a blog post about it, but hadn’t gotten around to it, so I am just going to include a couple of pictures now.
From August to October every year is the so-called ‘Flower Season’ in the Namaqualand and the Northern Cape. Normally this is an area that is quite devoid of much floral colour, quite dry, dusty and barren-looking (although there’s lots of succulents, cacti and aridity-adapted plants, if those rock your boat). However, if there has been good rain during our winter season of June/July/August, by springtime vast swathes of the countryside are carpeted in the lushest and brightest colours imaginable.
It’s a glorious feast for the eyes.
The best places are usually around Springbok in the Northern Cape, but that is about 5 hours and 500 km away. So, with petrol costing R10 a litre, we tried our luck closer to home, and thus found ourselves in Clanwilliam.
We arrived in the middle of Saturday morning shopping. In fact, there seemed to be a bazaar or a local church fête going on at the one end of town, so we stopped for some refreshing tea and delicious scones and pancakes. One has to support the local industry, after all! It was all most delightful.
And then we drove up to the Ramskop Wild Flower Garden and Nature Reserve, which we hadn’t even known was there, but one of the elderly ladies serving refreshments recommended that we visit it.
It was soooo pretty.
All mixed together:
A bird seemed to be following us around, calling from here, from there, from around the corner, from the top of the tree… and at last I got him!
(I’ve just found out that this bird is a bokmakierie or Telophorus zeylonus. It’s so cool when you find out the names of the wild creatures you photograph!)
Overlooking it all, the regal looking quiver trees, whose tube-like branches the bushmen hollow out to make quivers for their arrows:
And a stone with some rock art reminded us that the bushmen used to live in the surrounding Cedarberg mountains, and that there are some magical, ancient sites we would love to visit.
Truly, a beautiful area that definitely warrants further exploration.