17 September, 2014

Postberg and Darling for spring flowers

- gardening for biodiversity

This September we did get to Postberg Flower Reserve in the West Coast National Park for the spring flowers. Free entry with our Wild Card. There are stern notices to Stay In Your Car, except at the picnic and parking spots. In 2010 we enjoyed walking the Bakoor Trail. Next year we will hike the trail again! Disconcertingly we are no longer allowed to walk into that view beyond the cars parked along the road to the right.

Didelta at Plankiesbaai

Didelta carnosa var. tomentosa leaves covered in white hairs, this daisy shrublet grows very close to the sea at Plankiesbaai.

Saldanha ships, vygie
angulate tortoise

From Postberg Flower Reserve you look across Langebaan Lagoon (nature conservation) to Saldanha Bay with ships taking iron ore brought from Sishen by train. Daisies, bulbs and succulents (electric pink vygie). An angulate tortoise kept me company. Since we couldn't walk down to the rocky bay, and didn't want the sandy one again, we climbed up the hill with the flowers.

Pelargonium fulgidum, Moraea tripetala, Diogon lignosus
Zaluzianskya
Salvia africana-lutea, Sutherlandia frutescens

Scarlet Pelargonium fulgidum with lush silver fur on its green leaves, also grows at Cape Columbine. Blue and yellow Moraea tripetala an iris in tiny feathered perfection. Purple and pink pea flowers of Dipogon lignosus. Five distinctively forked petals, common name drumsticks, is Zaluzianskya sp. (can't ID a pink one?) Strandsalie here living up to its name; Salvia africana-lutea grows in my garden. Metallic pods and leaves on Sutherlandia frutescens.

Gazania, Didelta carnosa var. tomentoasa, ?
?
Gazania, Dimorphotheca pluvialis 

Gazania peacock marked with chocolate and cream at the base of its petals. Didelta carnosa var. tomentosa. Two nameless yellow daisies. Dimorphotheca pluvialis rain daisies are white with a purple heart.

Tinie Versfeld Wildflower Reserve

Since we went that way home, we stopped at Tinie Versfeld Wildflower Reserve outside Darling. Swartland Renosterveld grows on fertile clay soils, almost covered with wheat fields today. 4% survives; this reserve is part of 1.6% which is conserved.

Romulea tabularis, Sparaxis bulbifera

Romulea tabularis blue stars with a golden heart (now I have a name for one of my potted treasures!) Soft yellow Sparaxis bulbifera grows with wet feet.

Pelargonium triste, Wachendorfia brachyandra
Lachenalia pallida, Babiana angustifolia

Pelargonium triste clove scented at night. 'John Tradescant took Pelargonium triste to England in 1632. It was one of the first pelargoniums that was collected and grown from the Cape' - PlantZAfrica. Wachendorfia brachyandra has red roots and golden flowers. Lachenalia pallida cream with green tips like a snowdrop. Babiana angustifolia blue with violet details on the upper petals.

Monsonia speciosa

We have so many different flowers that at the end of the day, I slide into SEEN those, but what is THAT large lonely white flower whose petals were neatly edged with pinking shears? Monsonia speciosa is one of our few true geraniums to set against a wide spectrum of pelargoniums.

Geissorhiza darlingensis

Late afternoon in Darling, setting out Geissorhiza darlingensis was open, but as we returned to our car half an hour later, the flowers were tucked up for a cool evening. In the iris family, yellow wine cup is only found at Tinie Versfeld, on damp granite soil. We did walk carefully, appreciating the boardwalks!

Travelling on from Montagu with its Bird Tree across the Little Karoo to George and the Birds of Eden on my False Bay blog.

Pictures by Diana and Jurg Studer of  Elephant's Eye
(in Porterville, near Cape Town in South Africa)

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Photographs and Copyright

Photographs are from Diana Studer or Jurg Studer.
His Panasonic Lumix FZ100 (info from Panasonic)
My Canon PowerShot A490 (info from Canon)

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Midnight in Darkest Africa

Midnight in Darkest Africa
For real time, click on the map.