January UNfitness and February for disas
by Diana Studer
- gardening for biodiversity
in Cape Town, South Africa
Hiking among wildflowers
in the mountains
around Cape Town
On New Year's Day I hiked with the Ungardener. Strong wind, I hung onto my hat, grabbed hanks of lockdown hair away from my face, wrestled with new glasses and first hike with new Canon G5X camera - all while desperately trying to keep up with him - as he spent most of his walk ... sitting on a rock ... waiting for me. Lost my balance, fell over, hurt my ankle, before we made it back to the car.
We went to Cape Point, from Olifantsbos circling up to Sirkelsvlei then back along the ridge. Baby Agama with cryptic colouring. Roella times two. Aristea.
The dragon, is watching you! Eroded sandstone, is endlessly fascinating. The surface weathered and crafted.
Follow the curved path laid out ahead. To Sirkelsvlei, where there is dark blue water. Looping back to look down to the Atlantic Ocean. Dilatris.
Pelargonium. Rock surface painted in lichen colours. Echoed in flowers white Syncarpha vestita and red Erica cerinthoides. Erica gone to seed in glory!
|New Year's Day flowers at Cape Point|
Second attempt was Silvermine Amphitheatre. Panorama walk. Higher than my Fynbos Rambles usually go. Went better, but as I looked at the path ahead along the ridge, I wimped out and we turned down half way. But I did see a fresh view! Tritoniopsis unguicularis found along the Cape Peninsula mountains, then leaping False Bay, to follow the mountains from Kleinmond to Napier.
Gladiolus carneus. Salmon Watsonia tabularis.
|Silvermine Amphitheatre January flowers|
Rejoining my Fynbos Ramblers, I did, with a few extra rests - sitting in carefully chosen patches of shade, a gentle breeze, birds singing - manage to catch up with them for destination disas above Kirstenbosch. Our disas are sadly targeted by poachers (and their willing buyers?!) To find the Pride of Table Mountain, first, in February, hike up, to a cliff, look on the shady side, where a waterfall trickles even in high summer. Your eye will find that COLOUR!
|Shady cliff with water|
Flash of vivid red. Disa uniflora. Gold sparkles in the sun, and the camera has lost the intensity of that RED.
|Pride of Table Mountain|
Our second Disa hike was up Steenberg in Silvermine. Split neatly like a geode, exposing a weathered surface and wings to lift us up the steep path, and then to sweep us down as tired feet skidded.
Blaze of blue. Disa graminifolia.
Red again, but now we look for a red pyramid. Cluster Disa ferruginea.
Got my second wind at last, and forged ahead to see That View over False Bay. Nothing human to mar a wide and distant view to Africa. We could be explorers discovering a new continent. Aristea glauca
Red spike for Table Mountain Beauty butterfly, but this time Tritoniopsis triticea. Pink marshmallows Stoebe rosea, yet a Nother daisy (confined to the Cape Peninsula)! Tucked in the rock crevice Crassula rupestris, sosatie (= kebab) plant, for the leaf arrangement.
Erica. Golden Serruria villosa. Hermas villosa has the very softest yellow flowers dancing on tall spikes.
|Steenberg for disas in February|
We settle back into our routine. Today he is up on the mountain with his Curious and Adventurous.
PS to the Photographers. Why does the new camera no longer show shooting information when I download my photos? I would like to see the time (but not printed on the picture!)
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Pictures by Diana and Jürg Studer
Teal blue text is my links.
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