The Karoo National Botanical Gardens in Worcester was originally created near Matjiesfontein in 1921 and moved to Worcester in 1945. We parked under a tree and set off, smothered in sun blocker, to enjoy the delights of the garden. I had visited the previous year and loved the strange forms and curious habits of the plants.
The Quiver Trees are … extraordinary! The branches of the tree were hollowed out and used by the Bushmen as quivers for their arrows.
I have no idea what this is – but look at it!
The spekboom is found as a pot plant in the UK, but I believe they absorb carbon from the atmosphere and can also be eaten in a salad as a source of Vitamin C – and the elephants in the Addo Elephant Park enjoy the spekboom as a staple food in their diet!
Thorn trees are of course a common sight in South Africa and in these gardens the Acacia Karroo, or Sweet Thorn, were flowering abundantly. Their thorns are impressive!
I love the aloes and in the springtime they must be spectacular with their red-orange pokers of flowers.
Ground-covering succulents are everywhere, although this year even the fat fingers of the succulents were wrinkled – the drought has been long-lasting and punishing.
And look at this odd plant – I think it is called the ‘Cat’s Tail Euphorbia’.
The Wild Grape is apparently not really edible, I don’t know what the round fruits are, the colourful flowers are in the Cape Coral Tree, and finally there are the wonderfully named ‘Chinese Lanterns’.
Euphorbias are everywhere!
And just as I was leaving… the Karoo Boer Bean tree
This interesting garden is a ‘must-visit’ in Worcester and I think it would be particularly beautiful in the spring when all the vygies are flowering. But it was sad to see the effect of the drought on the plants, even though they are adapted to these arid conditions.