On my knees – finding botanical treasures at Cape Point

The “bush” at Table Mountain National Park – I wish my garden looked like this!

Leucadendron leaves clustered around the enclosed ‘flower’

Every now and again, one will come upon something quite exquisite and very exciting. But to really appreciate the value and get full impact from the feature, one may have to resort to some unusual practices. Cave explorers shimmy up and down ropes in the pitch dark, deep sea divers sit patiently in diving bells as they wait to descend to their favourite wreck, and bird watchers shiver in the crisp dawn as they await the arrival of some exotic species.

I frequently find myself on my hands and knees, camera clutched in one hand, working my way slowly through the undergrowth, taking care to make enough noise to alarm any wildlife (to prevent unexpected encounters)!

Paper daisies – new flowers are pink, old ones are white

I move from plant to plant; photographing, admiring and just being overwhelmed by the sheer beauty of each specimen. The more diverse the environment, the slower is my progress. My family knows the signs and frequently just leave, knowing I could be occupied for hours!

Imagine then, how I revelled in the incredible Table Mountain National Park in South Africa! Thousands of species in flower, displaying their summer garb to any pollinator that would come by: rodents, birds and insects alike. This national park covers the most south western tip of the whole of Africa. It is a plant-lovers dream and the species you will find are awe inspiring.

Touch of gold – a perfect pincushion Protea

There is another reason why squatting down here is a good idea – the plants are short and bushy and the wind is incredible (probably why the plants don’t grow very high). But they make up for their lack of stature by their sheer beauty and in some cases, massive flowers.

These photos give a quick look at some of the enormous number of plants that were in flower. There were a lot of other interesting things about this area too, including some details on the sea which surrounds the peninsula, but they will be left for another day 🙂

The incredible King Protea – this one was 220cm (9 inches) in diameter

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17 Responses to On my knees – finding botanical treasures at Cape Point

  1. Pingback: Travel Theme: Flowers « East of Málaga

  2. Madoqua says:

    This post was nominated as a response to Ailsa’s Travel theme: Flowers. You can check out this lovely post at http://wheresmybackpack.com/2012/07/27/travel-theme-flowers/

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  3. ailsapm says:

    Oh wow, South Africa is home to the most stunning flowers. Those protea are amazing, and the paper daisies are divine. Really wonderful shots, Madoqua. xxx

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  4. Wow! That last one is incredible! The diversity in nature never ceases to amaze me!

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  5. Madoqua says:

    There is no doubt that the King Protea is stunning. It comes in pink as well as the brilliant red in the photo. I have a pink one in my garden and every bloom is highly cherished!

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  6. adinparadise says:

    Such beautiful Proteas, Madoqua. Those Paper Daisies are really pretty too. We do have so many lovely flowers in South Africa.

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    • Madoqua says:

      The South African flora is indeed very special, I agree wholeheartedly 🙂 There are plants there like no others anywhere else in the world. Proteas are my all time favourite plant family!

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  7. Fantastic capture my friend 😛

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  8. Pingback: Travel Theme:Flowers | Beyond the Brush

  9. Tahira says:

    So absolutely lovely! I could feel & smell them the flowers almost through your pictures.

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  10. cathome36 says:

    What can I say??? This pics were taken close to where I live. we live right at the Southern Tip of Africa. At Agulhas. Where the 2 oceans meet officially deep into the sea… and to celebrate that we have a lovely project going – have a look at WWKiP Agulhas (a facebook page) and join in….
    Besides that, it is such a privilege to live here. I am fairly new to blogging and love to see what other people blog, even all the photos, it take me on a journey almost everywhere…. Thanks for this opportunity to get to know such lovely people sahring positive things on your blogs. Catti.

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