Protea raindrops in Van Stadens

On Sunday we decided to swing by the Van Stadens Wildflower Reserve west of Port Elizabeth. The reserve really is one of my favorite nature reserves around the city, but it's also home to a huge amount of Geocaches, some that was still awaiting me to turn them into smileys on my map. There was a drizzle falling all morning so jumping in and out of the car at every cache meant that I was soaked after a while. It…

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Pincushion Proteas at Van Stadens

We stopped by the Van Stadens Wildflower Reserve on Sunday afternoon for a quick walk.  I've always found that it doesn't matter what time of year I visit the reserve, there is always something in flower.  At the moment it's the Pincushion Proteas.

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Proteas in the city

I went Geocaching in Lorraine this afternoon and had to follow a trail into the bush in the area to go and find a cache up a tree.  You can see it is spring by the amount of wild flowers in bloom and I specially liked these Pincushion Proteas close to the cache location.

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A blooming nice display at Van Stadens

 The West Coast and Namakwaland is famous for their spring flowers while a number of reserves in the southern Cape, one of these being the Baviaanskloof Wilderness Area, are UNESCO World Heritage Sites as it is where the Cape Floral Kingdom occurs.  Living in Port Elizabeth it's not always possible to do the trek west to go and view flowers but a few weeks ago I realized that it's not  necessary.About 40 kilometers west of Port Elizabeth is the Van Stadens Wildflower Reserve,…

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Celebrating Heritage Day at Van Stadens

Today is Heritage Day in South Africa and all South Africans celebrate the day differently.  Some like to dress up in their traditional clothing while others come together for a braai.  Political parties have gatherings, clubs use the day to organise events and some people just stay home and do a few chores or watch tv all day long.  I celebrated Heritage Day with my fellow Geocachers at the Van Stadens Wildflower Reserve taking part in the second annual Geocaching…

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Langkloof protea

The Langkloof may be a "less desirable" tourism destination than the adjacent Garden Route, but it doesn't mean that its less beautiful.  It may not have the breathtaking coastline or inspiring indigenous forests of the Garden Route, but it doesn't have to stand back one step when it comes to scenic beauty.  Framed by mountains in the north and south, the predominant vegetation is Fynbos, interspersed by farmland and summer fruit orchards.  A little detour on my last trip up…

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African Blogger Awards – Photography runner-up

I am currently exploring the Wild Coast a bit while on my way to #Indaba2015 in Durban and have had very periodic internet access.  On checking Twitter yesterday afternoon I saw a tweet announcing that The Firefly Photo Files has taken the runner-up spot in the Photography category of the African Blogger Awards.  Say what?  It took a double take and a quick check at the other tweets announcing the different winners and runners-up before it dawned on me.  I actually…

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Pincushion Protea at Van Stadens

The Pincushion Protea (Leucospermum) is a genus of about 50 species of flowering plants in the family Proteaceae - part of the Cape Floral Kingdom also known as Fynbos.  They occupy a variety of habitats, including scrub, forest, and mountain slopes.  In the case of this one, I photographed it in the Van Stadens Wildflower Reserve.  They are evergreen shrubs (rarely small trees) with tough and leathery leaves.  The flowers are produced in dense inflorescences, which have large numbers of prominent styles,…

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