Walking through vineyards and fynbos part 2: Bouchard Finlayson

On our recent trip to the Cape ..

Let’s get straight to it !!!   From the top of the ridge overlooking the vineyards of Bouchard Finlayson and Hemel en Aarde Valley in Hermanus, our walking trail continued ..

Collages147

I was quite surprised at the amazing colours of the fynbos (natural vegetation in the Cape region) at the top of the ridge.  Most pockets of colour didn’t come out well in the longer distance photos .. to the naked eye it was very pretty!  I didn’t expect to see so much up there.  The estate has more than 260 plant species !! Fynbos:  indigenous natural vegetation characterized by 3 plant families – Ericacea, Proteacea and Restionacea.  The Cape Floral Kingdom, or fynbos, as it is commonly known, stretches from the west coast of the Cape Province, eastwards to Port Elizabeth and is the only place in the world where these families occur together.  Fynbos needs fire, ideally at 12-15 year intervals, in order to remove the plants which have become senescent and allow seeds to germinate and restore species diversity.”

  Copy of IMG_3987 Copy of IMG_3988 Copy of IMG_3994 Copy of IMG_3996 Copy of IMG_3997 Copy of IMG_3999 Copy of IMG_4000

At the point, the boundary line of the estate, is a wetland which “interrupts the water flowing from Galpin kop in the neighbouring Fernkloof Nature Reserve.  The koppie gets its name from the renowned amateur botanist Thomas Galpin which is also the name of our signature wine – Galpin Peak Pinot Noir.”

Copy of IMG_4001

Have brightened this photo trying to get the colours … didn’t succeed very well 😦

Copy of IMG_4002   Copy of IMG_4003 Copy of IMG_4004
Patches of alien Kikuyu grass and dense colony of Sour Fig suggests this spot was at one time a sheep kraal”

Copy of IMG_4005

Sour Fig …

Copy of IMG_4007 Copy of IMG_4008

Beehives house the Cape Bee, unique in that of the several hundreds of bee species in the world, the workers, during a queen-less period, will lay eggs that can develop into workers, or even queens …

Copy of IMG_4009 Copy of IMG_4011 Copy of IMG_4012 Copy of IMG_4014

Next we came across a protea plantation, established about 30 years ago by the previous owner to supply cut flowers for export.  “ It is now over-mature … and should be cleared and burnt to allow re-seeding to take place“.

Copy of IMG_4015   Copy of IMG_4020 Collages148

By this time was very hot and bright .. we started our descent down an old jeep track which was “badly sited and has led to soil erosion which is now being repaired.  Vegetation is being allowed to recover to the edge of the trail”  Descending is made easier by thick ropes strung between wooden poles  …

Copy of IMG_4022 Copy of IMG_4033

From here we spotted the cyclists again, on the Wines2Whales Mountain Bike race  (see previous post).. zoomed in for a closer look

Copy of IMG_4031 Copy of IMG_4027

I then spotted hang-gliders …. zoomed in for a closer look too 😉

Copy of IMG_4028 Copy of IMG_4035 Copy of IMG_4037

Very friendly lot !!!   ..  greeted us as they passed  ” good morning … hi …. hello there … have a nice day … lovely day to be walking … enjoying the beautiful weather? … enjoy your day …  🙂

Copy of IMG_4042

We passed an area “densely infested with aliens which has been used for the past 15 years as a research project under the management of University of Cape Town.  Various species of insects, mainly Australian in origin have been released to monitor the efficiency of biological control methods …. despite the success of these control methods, the impact of these alien trees has been such as to lead to 100% suppression of any indigenous plants”.

Copy of IMG_4040

On the right is a composting facility which utilizes chipped alien branch wood and residue from wine production …

Copy of IMG_4045 Copy of IMG_4047

Continual stream of cyclists ..

Copy of IMG_4049

This is where we parted ways.   We chose to walk back through the vineyards …

Copy of IMG_4050 Copy of IMG_4051 Copy of IMG_4052

Galpin Peak (under cloud when hubby and I started our walk)  ..

Copy of IMG_4053 Copy of Copy of IMG_4054 Copy of IMG_4056

Watching the field workers working in rows I wondered what they were doing.  I discovered hooks on the poles which supporting wires are hooked into.  As the vines grow, so the wires need lifting.  I’m sure I’m correct in my assumption 😉

Copy of IMG_4057 Copy of IMG_4059 Copy of IMG_4060 Copy of IMG_4065 Copy of IMG_4066 Copy of IMG_4068 Copy of IMG_4067

Back to where we started from … the estate’s beautiful home and tasting room ..

Copy of IMG_4069 Copy of IMG_4071 Copy of IMG_4070

What a super day!!!   We didn’t do the wine tastings 😦  on an empty stomach .. lunch was needed!!    We have done them, a few years ago and will return for tastings at Bouchard Finlayson Winery on our next visit to Hermanus

Advertisements

About momsmeanderings

Wife ... mom ... granny .. in a nutshell ! Never a dull moment !
This entry was posted in Cape, countryside, flowers, Hermanus, insects, Landscape, mountains, plants, travel, trees, wine estates and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Walking through vineyards and fynbos part 2: Bouchard Finlayson

  1. mithriluna says:

    Such a wonderful post of such an amazing place! Your pictures are terrific! I especially liked the one of the white flowers with the purple centers. Gorgeous.

    • Thank you mithriluna. The white flower is an on the many ‘everlasting’ .. Google it to find the botanical name but there seem to be a couple for similar looking plants, so to avoid confusion, I shall just stick with ‘everlasting’ 🙂 So called, they can withstand days without nutrients and are popularly used in dried flower arrangements without losing their bright colours

  2. Pingback: 'The Wine Kingdom: Celebrating conservation in the Cape winelands' - Musings with coffee

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s