The Obesa Nursery, Graaff Reinet

The Obesa Nursery

The Obesa Nursery in Graaff Reinet should be on every gardener’s ‘must-visit’ list! This extraordinary succulent and cactus nursery occupies a vast site behind the main street in Graaff Reinet and is a wonderland of strange shapes and colours. I suspect you either love it or hate it – no time or space for hesitation here. If I lived in the town I would be a daily visitor with my camera.

Tall, prickly things

Logan’s Garden in Matjiesfontein

The original Karoo National Botanic Garden was created at White Hill, c.5kms away from Matjiesfontein, in 1921. It was known as the Logan Memorial Garden. However, the site proved too dry and too isolated and the garden was moved and re-established in Worcester in 1945.

Whitehill railway siding (Google)
Whitehill railway siding (Google)

At the Lord Milner Hotel the guests were relaxing around the swimming pool or in the shade on various verandahs so I wandered around by myself, camera in hand. Tweedside was Logan’s home and it seems he made a succulent garden around it – no hankering after plants and flowers which wouldn’t survive the heat. The garden showed signs of the extreme heat and no rain, but even so there were plants at which to marvel.

The Karoo National Botanical Gardens in Worcester

The Karoo Desert 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.

Karoo Desert Botanic Garden, Worcester

I visited this amazing garden on a scorchingly hot day in February – it was at least 35C. The Karoo Desert National Botanic Garden lies just outside the town of Worcester, in the Cape Province, under the Hex River Mountains. The garden is quiet and has a conveniently placed restaurant near the entrance which serves food and ice-cold drinks.The garden was originally established near Matjiesfontein in 1921 as the Logan Memorial Garden, moving to Worcester in 1945. The garden covers 144 hectares of natural vegetation, and 11 hectares are cultivated. It is promoted as the only succulent garden in the southern hemisphere

The restaurant in the Karoo Desert Botanic Gardens
The restaurant in the Karoo Desert Botanic Gardens

The Cycad Collection, Durban Botanical Gardens

The wonderfully peaceful and green oasis of the Durban Botanical Gardens lies between the City of Durban and the hills of the Berea and is the oldest Botanical Gardens in Durban, founded in 1849, and modelled on the Gardens in Cape Town. The Cycad Collection is apparently the rarest in the world and has been built up since the gardens were started.