It’s blooming beautiful on Flower Valley Farm right now.
The Proteas are flowering – and that makes it quite simply one of the most beautiful times of the year to visit the farm for a hike.
(Remember: Flower Valley Farm is now open for hiking and mountain biking. However, in order to adhere to COVID-19 regulations, we ask that groups stick to a maximum of 4 people, and that you wear your mask when in any of our buildings and offices, and maintain social distancing when you’re outside).
A little background check on Proteas:
To find out more about the history of Proteas, we checked in with Flower Valley friend, Zoë Poulsen from Notes from a Cape Town Botanist.
According to Zoë, the genus was named in 1735 by Carl Linnaeus after the Greek God, Proteus. Proteus had the ability to take on different forms – and it’s believed Linnaeus was inspired by the many different forms of Protea flowers.
But Proteas have a much longer history than that. Fossil pollen shows that the Proteaceae family’s origins were on the supercontinent Gondwana, some 140 million years ago. What’s more, according to Zoë, they even once occurred in Antarctica – before the continent was covered in ice.
Proteas today on Flower Valley Farm
There are 112 species of Proteas – and most you’ll only find in the Fynbos Biome. Flower Valley Farm is home to 11 of these species. And if you choose to enjoy the farm’s tranquil hiking routes right now, here’s what you could see:
Protea compacta (Near Threatened)
Protea repens (Least Concern)
Protea cynaroides (Least concern)
Protea longifolia (Vulnerable)
Protea speciosa (Least Concern)
Flower Valley Conservation Trust
Flower Valley Farm
Flower Valley Farm is a showcase of pristine fynbos and indigenous forests covering our mountains and valleys, and a demonstration of how to manage these landscapes well.
For 17 years, Lesley Richardson has guided and led Flower Valley Conservation Trust as the Trust’s Executive Director, and in the past two years, as Fundraising and Partnership Development Manager.
The Pincushion Hill hiking trail is beautiful every day of the year. The trail is especially striking during the months of October and November, when the Leucospermum cordifolium and Leucospermum
The Wonky Hill Trail starts on the Flower Valley amphitheatre, just behind the farmstead beyond the dam.The trail has the same starting
Most of these wonderful aromas can be experienced on a hike through our fynbos. So if you head to Flower Valley Farm now, here’s what’s likely to light up your sense of smell.
When we saw that an intact pristine fynbos farm was threatened by potential agricultural expansion 21 years ago – you, our donors, stepped in to help. This purchase with the help of Fauna and Flora International, saw the birth of Flower Valley Conservation Trust.
At the height of the lockdown during the past four months, Flower Valley Conservation Trust had to react swiftly. At the time, the spotlight fell almost exclusively on the latter half of our vision: for life and livelihoods (our vision is: A fynbos-filled future for life and livelihoods).
Over the past two years, 138 fynbos harvesters received training in how to harvest fynbos sustainably. They were trained in their own home language (Afrikaans, isiXhosa and English).
“The response we received to our call for donations, was heartwarming and enabled us to meet the overwhelming need in these communities.”