Saturday, October 1, 2011

Biking to the Flowers of Namaqualand Part V

Saturday morning dawned bright and clear! We started off with breakfast at a hotel in town. Catherine and Hilton want to buy a camera like mine, so she practiced with my [older] Canon Powershot.

Catherine took the photo of me, Grant and Hilton as a trial run to a day of photography

I took this photo of Clanwilliam dam lined with holiday homes as we drove past

Hilton took us to Niewoudtville to see a collection of motorbikes and cars in an old garage. When we got there, the owner had gone away for the weekend.

While the men peered through the windows at the display, I snapped the interesting front of the garage
Then it was onto a dirt road into the Flowers proper! Although I took this photo from a fast-moving car you can already see the flowers in the fields along the road

The first of the magnificent flowers also taken from a moving vehicle. In the corner you can see Catherine taking photos

When I downloaded the photos, I was amazed to see how beautifully the photos on my [older] camera came out. Catherine, too, excelled herself as photographer seeing as this was the first time she'd ever used my camera. The next few photos are all by Catherine and perhaps there'll be some afterwards which I missed. However, between us, we took so many photos that I eventually lost track of the rightful owner!


More photos by Catherine of more magnificent flowers

And again...

Isn't this a beautiful display?

Catherine's first close-up
And again...
And her piece de resistance!
My first stationary view of the flowers

A capture of field sparklers: purple Mesembryanthemum commonly known in South Africa as vygies
A carpet of beautiful colours, textures, shapes and fragrances

Catherine sizing up her next image!

I wore a purple sweater and jeans that day and Catherine's top was yellow. The men, waiting patiently in the vehicle, said when I lay down to get the angle right and Catherine crouched over a single bloom for a closer image, we were invisible!

 No lack of floral variety!

Note the dry, rocky ground which is home to these beauties
Vygies again, this time close-up

The wildflower phenomenon occurs annually in the Namaqualand and lasts from July to September. This dry, sandy part of Southern Africa bursts into flower and riots of blooms of every shade and hue fills the landscape with rich splendour. At the end of this short season, the show is over, the seeds go underground and wait until next year's spring rains awaken them again.

Note: This was just the first part of our first stop at the flowers. To be continued.

I hope you're all having a wonderful weekend.


  1. Beautiful, colourful display of wild flowers Jo! I think I see the orange one I was interested in. Do you know the name of it?

  2. What a magnificent display you were treated to, Jo. It truly is a veritable miracle the way in which the arid veld transforms itself annually into this floral extravaganza! Another marvellous post, thank you!

  3. What a feast for the eyes and the soul! A lot of these flowers were brought to Australia by the early settlers but here they are not in such great profusion.

    Jo, blogger swallowed your comment as I tried to post it. They have done this before and it is very annoying. I may have to copy each comment before I post it in case it disappears off the face of the earth.

  4. Absolutely mind-boggling, Jo. I've never seen anything like it for variety and colour. Formal gardens pale into insignificance against these riots of colour.
    Luv, K

  5. this is my favourite site. Such lovely flowers is like in Heaven.

  6. What a beautiful display and such fantastic colors.

    Darryl and Ruth :)

  7. A Desert in Bloom! How Gorgeous Jo!!!
    Tell your friend she did GOOD with the camera on her first try!
    Happy travels!!

  8. Spectacular desert blooms! In southern California we have the Mojave (pronounced mo-HAHV-ee) Desert and it blooms in April, our spring...looking similar to Namaqualand in your spring, but not quite as profuse. We don't get as much rain in the Mojave as does Namaqualand.

  9. Very beautiful blog, I love some of the photographs you have taken. The wildflowers are absolutely stunning. I am new to blogging so it is obvious that I have some work to do in order to have a site that retains peoples interests. Like yourselves I enjoy motorcycle touring and I will be posting more images in the future although I must confess none of them will be to the standard of yours.

    Keep on with your adventures, life's too short to regret anything.


Thank you for visiting my blog and taking the time to leave a comment. I appreciate your feedback. Jo