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Bits and bobs about my life in my lovely home, Thatchwick Cottage, Pretoria, South Africa.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Saturday, 28 March '09: A Highveld grass garden

Pretoria does not have any striking geographical features. It is situated on the highveld or high grasslands of the interior of South Africa. Lying in a hollow, surrounded by rocky hills, the environs are pleasant but not spectacular. However, it is a city of garden lovers and March is the month of open gardens on display. I visited two last Saturday. This new and most imposing house is found in a new upmarket estate, Cornwall Hill. The latter is a development, which like all similar ventures, has the potential of destroying more of the natural environment. Fortunately in this case the owners limited their formal garden to a small perimeter around the house. The remainder of the huge estate has been more or less left to showcase the indigenous grasses, shrubs and flowers.

Meandering stone paths take you through the rocky grassland. At first I felt let down. Was this all that I had come to see? Then I began to discover the treasures.

A succulent growing in a crack of multi-coloured rock.
Plectranthus spreading at the foot of a knobbly rock whose grooves were filled with spiders' webs and tufts of grass.
Grasses turning to seed.

Indigeous pelargoniums among the stones.

These beauties made me think of Christ's injunction to consider the flowers of the field, which neither spin nor labour; yet King Solomon in all his glory was never clothed in such splendid beauty. What do you think?


Smilingsal said...

I think that you live in a beautiful place and have the good sense to appreciate God's beauty. Thanks for sharing.

pammiejo said...

You're right - there is so much beauty in the way God/nature has planned it out. We humans often think we can do it better! I do like to see landscaping have some of the "natural" in it. PAM

Vicki Lane said...

Close ups are so wonderful! I love seeing the flora of your area. And how nice to see more natural gardens.

Raph G. Neckmann said...

I think it is of vital importance to preserve natural habitat. Many gardens have a wonderful mix of cultivated and wild, which encourages bees and other wildlife, and looks great too!

TheWritersPorch said...

There is no greater artist than our Master!
These are great examples Eleanor of how perfectly he designed this planet! Thank you for sharing your part of it with me!

Sreddy Yen said...

Some lovely photos! Da Vinci once said: "In Nature's inventions nothing is lacking, and nothing is superfluous." Hopefully you will be able to take better close-ups after the "lesson"! Good luck :O)

Muriel (Wipneus) said...

Hi Eleanor

Beautiful photo's!!! Needless to say, I luv Pretoria.


Janet said...

What a super opportunity to be able to visit these homes. I never knew one could. I love the indigenous! My uncle built an indigenous garden at his house and it was beautiful - he lived in an already built up area, so nothing was growing naturally. Thank you for sharing!

Pam said...

I appreciate so much when people make the effort to retain plants indigenous to the area, and leave "nature corridors", where insects and birds are still considered. Thank you for showing me this part of your world.

The Quintessential Magpie said...

I think it's pretty neat, and I also think all good things in life deserve a closer look.

Thanks for sharing, Eleanor...


Sheila :-)

Ms.Daisy said...

I couldn't agree more! I love how nature cannot stand a vacuum and fills every nook and cranny with beauty! Lovely pictures.


Barbara Martin said...

These are such wonderful plants. Thanks for sharing the photos, Eleanor.

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