Home from a Contiki style wild flower seeking tour of the West Coast and Namaqualand, I’m excited to share the wonders of our trip. Over the next few days I will share details of every stop in separate installments but this is an overview. I hope that this summary will be useful to other flower hunters.
En masse the most impressive picturesque displays which we saw were on 3 September at Ramskop Wild Flower Garden in Clanwilliam, 4 September at Namaqua National Park in the Skilpad Section and Darling on 7 September. The most diverse range of flowers was at the Oudepost reserve in Darling. The furthest distance visited from Cape Town was Springbok in Namaqualand which is 560 km North of Cape Town. Aside from the grand scale picturesque scenes, flowers lined our journey in a near unbroken daisy chain. At almost any point on our 5 day journey, stepping out of the car reveals beauty at every step. In most instances in one step up to 4 or 5 different types of flowers lay at our feet.
It is valuable to know that on cloudy days most flowers close their petals, their nyctinastic natures protect the pollen which is best transferred dry. This trait however does hamper flower viewing when the sun is not out. In sunshine, flowers turn to face the sun, a field may not look like much from one side but be spectacular from the view which they are facing.
Different areas peak at different times. Nieuwoudville peaked around mid August. Namaqua National Park may have been just past its peak when we were there and Darling peaks from Now (early Sept) to mid September
I found the Namaqualand and West Coast in Spring Facebook page useful to see what others are currently sharing.