I recently realised that I have a huge passion for plants and gardening. Weird, I know! Pity I never knew this as a child/teen, because then I would have jumped at every opportunity to help my parents in the garden and get my hands dirty with a good and solid dig in the earth… but alas, I always thought of it as horrid Saturday afternoon work.
Now, living in a flat, I have to make do with with clay pots, an overly sunny balcony and a constant battle to keep my little plants watered and well.
Anyway, so with this new-found love for all things green and growing, I was absolutely blown away by a recent visit to Babylonstoren estate just outside Franschhoek. Located on the local wine route, the three-and-a-half century old Cape Dutch werf breaks away from the typical rolling lawns and pretty dams of ordinary wine farms, and instead presents the visitor with an overwhelming eight acre garden of botanical diversity.
Within this garden there are more than 300 different plant varieties, and they are all edible. Inspiration for the garden came from Cape Town’s historical Company Gardens, as well as the mythical hanging ones of Babylon (the name obviously lends itself nicely to this!) and they are curated and cared for by an elf-like woman named Gundula Deutschlander.
The next time you head to that area, you just HAVE to go and have a walkabout. It truly is quite an experience. Cost: R10, feeling of refreshed oneness with nature after: priceless!
Here are a few pics