What better time to start a garden blog than in Spring time? The days get longer, skirts get shorter, plants grow at a rate of knots, skin gets tanned and time spent ‘in’ the great outdoors increases exponentially. It’s an all-round good time bar sun burn and sweaty pits – but I’d take that any day over the paralyzing chill of winter.
In winter the garden is by and large under water, I’d be better off with a snorkel than a garden fork; the lawn looks like it’s been used for rugby practice, towels gather strange organisms, electricity bills go through the roof and Table Mountain hides the sun by 3pm.
To be honest, I don’t hate winter; I’m just slating it to juxtapose it with the awesomeness that is spring. And on that fine piece of narration let’s kick off with a trip to Yzerfontein and the West Coast National Park for the wild flower blooms.
This was the first time I’ve ever been to the park and it certainly won’t be the last. The blooms are quite simply nothing short of breathtaking between August – September after the winter rains. The West Coast boasts an impressive list of attractions, the azure waters of Langebaan Lagoon are a water sports Mecca, the local fishermen and restaurants bring out the best of the Atlantic, the rugged landscape beckons to those inclined to explore, and the casino beckons to, well, idiots as far as I’m concerned. The West Coasts trump card must be the fact that it’s a mere hour-and-a-half drive from Cape Town, such convenient escapism that I went two weekends in a row. Like a boss.
The first weekend was with family at the luxurious ‘Not Forgotten’ self catering house, a two-storey Cape Cod styled house situated smack bang on the beach sporting a myriad of bells-and-whistles like under floor heating and the biggest showerhead I have ever encountered. The environmentalist in me succumbed to these creature comforts with alarming ease as I slouched on the hammock watching massive swell rolling into the beach. I thought about dusting the cobwebs off my body board but 8ft frozen West Coast bombs on a desolate beach was hardly an appropriate way to break my hiatus from the ocean…
The next weekend was at a friend’s dad’s man-cave. Far better tailored to the shenanigans of a group of twenty something’s this modest house had it all: more braais than you could count on one hand, enough rooikrans to keep Mzolis going for several weeks, numerous TVs set up pub-style ( so you can watch more than one sport at a time) and the largest collection of lazy boy chairs in the southern hemisphere.
It also had a very strange tree, or should I say a tree within a tree?