Darling Spring Flower Report: 9 Sept 2010

LOCATION OF FLOWERS:

Beautiful flowers are now out in full bloom in all reserves around Darling as well as on roadsides.  It seems that with this year’s peculiar weather it is going to be an exceptional year for the wonderfully scented Blue Pypie, Bobbejaantjies,  Kelkiewyn Moraeas, Romeleas and many others. The yellow and white daisies are also out in abundance

Darling Renosterveld Reserve (At top of village behind the Darling Primary School);

Darling Groenekloof Reserve (R315 alongside the SPCA premises) Park at the SPCA and enter through the small gate in the corner;

Tienie Versfeld Reserve (R315 Darling – Yzerfontein);

Contreberg (along R307 to Mamre)

– at all the above reserves visitors need to park their cars and walk in the veld

Duckitt Nurseries Wildflower Reserve – farm road through reserve (R307 Darling – Mamre – in front of Duckitt Nursery); No buses

Waylands – farm road through reserve (R307 to Mamre)

Visitors must please take care not to drive off the road in the Waylands and Duckitt Nurseries reserves as the veld is very wet and they may get stuck. No buses.

The Darling Hills road past Groote Post wine estate is looking beautiful at the moment so well worth a drive along there (gravel road but in good condition)

Wildflower game drives at Burgherspost Nature Reserve.

Leaving 9.30 every morning except Sundays and depending on the weather @ R150 pp (min. 2 people) from Cloof Cellar.

Please book two days in advance – Contact Jacques vd Merwe  Conservation Manager  Tel: 022 492 2830   Fax: 086 653 7479  Cell: 084 606 3470

e-mail: nature@cloof.co.za www.burgherspost.co.za www.cloof.co.za

TYPE OF FLOWERS:

Waylands Wild Flower reserve is looking really beautiful. There are lots of the White Stars and Sundews out. We saw a lot of the yellow Ixia and the little yellow Geissorhiza, as well as the very pretty Babejana that look like a Kelkiewyn. We even saw some Kelkiewyn, which is very early for them. All in all it looks as if the flowers are already out for Spring Day! The chincerinchees are out, but not yet in flower. Hopefully they will be opening by the weekend. The late Flax has started flowering, and together with the early Flax which is still out, give the veld a very pretty blue haze. This weather seems to suit the daisies very well, as they are looking particularly colourful this year.

Tienie Versfeld

Awash with white and yellow daisies as well as a large variety of bulb species.

Darling Renosterveld Reserve

Spiloxene (poublom), muggiegras (acrosanthes); sneeuvygie (pharnaceum) bokbaaivygies, yellow spiloxene; purple romulea; orange romulea; pink ixias just starting, bloukappie (sparaxis) butterfly lily (wachendorfia) will be out soon; lewertjie (indigofera); lachenalias also starting, moraeas, a few bloupypies, bontrokaandblom (hesperantha); hermannia (poproos); sandgeelgesiggie (hemimeris) Reserve is bushy and visitors must walk off the path to see best flowers – walk to right in front of reservoirs

Darling Groenekloof Reserve:

Hermannia (lanterns-Poproos), Arctotis (daisies), Drossera (Snotroesie), Chlorophytum, Moraeari tripetala (blue), Homeria flaccida (Moreaea), Indigofera (Lewertjie), Dimorphotheca pluvialis (rain daisies) , Muraltia, Arums, Lachenia, Oxalis, yellow Spiloxene – all looking good – people must walk through and around the reserve to see.

Duckitt Nurseries Reserve:

Masses of blue flax (Heliophila); white raindaisies (dimorphotheca pluvialis); yellow cape daisies; bloupypies (gladiolus gracilus); hermannia (poproos); bobbejaantjie (babiana); gifkool (chlorophytum undulatum) and in the dam rhysblommetjie (onixotis atricta)

Burgherspost Wine Estate & Cloof Wine Estate:

Sandveld

Bloupypies (Gladiolus carinatus) – widely distributed, one-one

Cape rain daisies (Dimorphoteca pluvialis) – starting to come out now

Botterblomme (Arctotis breviscapa) – here and there, not abundant

Babiana ambigua – a beautiful little bulb starting to flower now – never abundant, but nice to see.

Gymnodiscus capularis – weedy – loads on the old fields – tiny yellow flower

Ganskos – Cotula turbinatata – also a weedy – loads along the sides of the roads and on old fields

Sugarbush (Protea repens & Protea burchelli) – almost at the end of its season.

Wetlands

Geel pypies (Gladiolus trichonemifolius) – dense patch in the wetlands – smells really nice

Leipoldt-se-bobbejaantjie (Babiana leipoldtii) – Critically endangered – quite a few – one-one

Sterretjies (Spiloxene spp.) – patches here and there.

Bleek Viooltjies (Lachenalia mutabilis) – nice little bulb flowering in patches here and there.

Leucodendron lanigerum – flowers throughout the year, but looks at its best now – not a colorful shrub, but very rare and has some interesting value.

FLOWER SHOWS:

Name: Darling Wildflower Show

Date & Time: 17 – 19 September 2010

9am  – 5 pm  daily

Venue: Darling Sports Club

Admission: Adults R25 scholars R15 / Special discount for pensioners R15 ONLY on Friday

Contact detail: Enquiries 022 492 3361 info@darlingtourism.co.za

Stalls:     083 655 4237

Name: Duckitt Nurseries Orchid Show

Date & Time: 16 – 19 September 2010

Venue: Oudepost Farm

Admission: Adults R25 scholars R15 / Special discount for pensioners R15 ONLY on Thursday and Friday

Contact detail: 022 492 2606 info@duckittnurseries.com

Rare Bulbs Found at Cloof

Aliens Give Way to Endangered Indigenous Species

Over the past few weeks many of the top botanists of the Fynbos region have set their sights on Cloof’s Burgherspost Nature Reserve. This was not only because of the spectacular show of daisies and rare bulbs that we usually have, but also the new populations of critically endangered species recently discovered in the reserve. A species is classified as critically endangered when strong evidence points towards the species declining to such a degree that the likelihood of it going extinct in the wild is very high.

The bulbs pictured below owe their re-discovery and subsequent proliferation entirely to our alien-clearing programme. If the Port Jacksons had remained, it’s likely that these species would have been lost to the Cape Floral Kingdom forever.
Babiana leipoldtii ‘Leipoldt se bobbejaantjie’ is known in only seven locations around Darling and nowhere else in the world. All seven sites have highly fragmented, tiny populations are under threat from encroachment by alien trees (Port Jacksons) and grasses (Cynodon dactylon ‘kweek‘). These little specialist bulbs grow in seasonally wet marshlands in low densities and flower for a brief period from early to mid-August. Last year only three individuals were counted on the reserve, but the early warm weather and intensive alien clearing program saw nearly 150 bulbs flowering in a tiny 2 ha area.
Babiana pygmaea ‘geelbobbejaantjie’ is even more rare than B. leipoldtii, previously known in only two locations, and on the brink of extinction. The locations are kept secret from the public, fearing illegal collecting of the very few remaining individuals by specialist collectors. Three individual plants where discovered in an area recently cleared of Port Jacksons and upon further investigation another site with at least 50 adult plants was discovered only a few metres away.
To come and see these amazing flowers for yourself (depending upon when you visit, there may be others), book a wildflower game drive at Cloof or e-mail your details and dates to nature@cloof.co.za. The drive lasts for about 2 hours and costs R150 per person (minimum two people and no drives on Sundays).

Darling Spring Flower Report: 12 Aug 2010

LOCATION OF FLOWERS:

Best reserves in the Darling area at the moment for shows of flowers are the Tienie Versfeld reserve which is awash with white and yellow daisies and the Duckitt Nurseries reserve which is covered in blue flax.

Darling Renosterveld Reserve (At top of village behind the Darling Primary School);

Darling Groenekloof Reserve (R315 alongside the SPCA premises) Park at the SPCA and enter through the small gate in the corner;

Tienie Versfeld Reserve (R315 Darling – Yzerfontein);

Contreberg (along R307 to Mamre)

– at all the above reserves visitors need to park their cars and walk in the veld

Duckitt Nurseries Wildflower Reserve – farm road through reserve (R307 Darling – Mamre – in front of Duckitt Nursery); No buses

@ Cloof and Burgherspost Wine Estates

Wildflower game drives probably next week depending on how the flowers look. At the moment it’s still early, just here and there – nice for botanists interested in the little obscure flowers and rare and endangered things, not fields covered in daisies.

Minimum of three people @ R100 per person – the drive takes about two hours.

Contact Jacques vd Merwe  Conservation Manager

Tel: 022 492 2830   Fax: 086 653 7479  Cell: 084 606 3470

e-mail: nature@cloof.co.za www.burgherspost.co.za www.cloof.co.za

TYPE OF FLOWERS:

Tienie Versfeld

Awash with white and yellow daisies

Darling Renosterveld Reserve

Spiloxene (poublom), muggiegras (acrosanthes); sneeuvygie (pharnaceum) bokbaaivygies, yellow spiloxene; purple romulea; orange romulea; pink ixias just starting, bloukappie (sparaxis) butterfly lily (wachendorfia) will be out soon; lewertjie (indigofera); lachenalias also starting, moraeas, a few bloupypies, bontrokaandblom (hesperantha); hermannia (poproos); sandgeelgesiggie (hemimeris) Reserve is bushy and visitors must walk off the path to see best flowers – walk to right in front of reservoirs

Darling Groenekloof Reserve:

Hermannia (lanterns-Poproos), Arctotis (daisies), Drossera (Snotroesie), Chlorophytum, Moraeari tripetala (blue), Homeria flaccida (Moreaea), Indigofera (Lewertjie), Dimorphotheca pluvialis (rain daisies) , Muraltia, Arums, Lachenia, Oxalis, yellow Spiloxene – all looking good – people must walk through and around the reserve to see.

Duckitt Nurseries Reserve:

Masses of blue flax (Heliophila); white raindaisies (dimorphotheca pluvialis); yellow cape daisies; bloupypies (gladiolus gracilus); hermannia (poproos); bobbejaantjie (babiana); gifkool (chlorophytum undulatum) and in the dam rhysblommetjie (onixotis atricta)

Burgherspost Wine Estate & Cloof Wine Estate:

Sandveld

Bloupypies (Gladiolus carinatus) – widely distributed, one-one

Cape rain daisies (Dimorphoteca pluvialis) – starting to come out now

Botterblomme (Arctotis breviscapa) – here and there, not abundant

Babiana ambigua – a beautiful little bulb starting to flower now – never abundant, but nice to see.

Gymnodiscus capularis – weedy – loads on the old fields – tiny yellow flower

Ganskos – Cotula turbinatata – also a weedy – loads along the sides of the roads and on old fields

Sugarbush (Protea repens & Protea burchelli) – almost at the end of its season.

Wetlands

Geel pypies (Gladiolus trichonemifolius) – dense patch in the wetlands – smells really nice

Leipoldt-se-bobbejaantjie (Babiana leipoldtii) – Critically endangered – quite a few – one-one

Sterretjies (Spiloxene spp.) – patches here and there.

Bleek Viooltjies (Lachenalia mutabilis) – nice little bulb flowering in patches here and there.

Leucodendron lanigerum – flowers throughout the year, but looks at its best now – not a colorful shrub, but very rare and has some interesting value.

FLOWER SHOWS:

Name: Darling Wildflower Show

Date & Time: 17 – 19 September 2010

9am  – 5 pm  daily

Venue: Darling Sports Club

Admission: Adults R25 scholars R15 / Special discount for pensioners R15 ONLY

on Friday

Contact detail: Enquiries 022 492 3361 info@darlingtourism.co.za

Stalls:     083 655 4237

Name: Duckitt Nurseries Orchid Show

Date & Time: 16 – 19 September 2010

Venue: Oudepost Farm

Admission: Adults R25 scholars R15 / Special discount for pensioners R15 ONLY

on Thursday and Friday

Contact detail: 022 492 2606 info@duckittnurseries.com