Cool Constantia Greenbelts

Posted by on April 5, 2016

Wasn’t it just wonderful to get out into nature on our last Cape Explorer’s outing to the Cool Constantia Greenbelts?  I really enjoyed seeing all that greenery, it’s been a really dry brown summer!

How about you, did you enjoy it?

We live in such a beautiful part of the world it’s great to get outdoors and get the chance to enjoy it sometimes.  Even before we could get started Michael discovered this interesting creature.  Did you see the Rhino Beetle?

rhino

veg

As we strolled past the vegetable garden Karen reminded us of the farming that used to happen in these areas in days gone by.  Nowadays there are horse paddocks and houses where the farm lands used to be. I could just imagine the farm hands walking along the same path as us carrying their buckets, whistling a merry tune into the silence that surrounded them!  It was quite a different experience for us, wasn’t it?  So many joggers, cyclists, dog walkers and horse riders were making use of the greenbelts to get out and to get in touch with nature.  One could say that the greenbelts of Constantia are definitely fulfilling the purpose they were created for!  Wouldn’t it be wonderful if more places like this could be incorporated into town planning in the more densely populated areas?

We had such fun hunting for the different plants and animal life on our scavenger hunt list.  How did you do?  Did you find everything on the list?

Besides discovering the items on the list it was fascinating to see some of your interesting finds.  These were two of my favourites:

rhizome

Gemma found a root which looks very similar to ginger.  We sniffed it to see if it smelt like ginger but came to the conclusion that it wasn’t. However, it does belong to the same family as ginger, the Geophytes, in which it would be classified as a Rhizome.  Other Rhizomes you may know are the Arum Lily, Red Hot Poker, Cape Spinach, Agapanthus and March Lily.  Did you find a Pig Ear Lily on your hunt?  Well then, you probably found the plant which belonged to Gemma’s root!

monster

I love strolling along with different Explorer’s on our outings – it’s fun to get to know you all.  On this outing I had the privilege of strolling along with one of our youngest explorer’s.  Levi was delighted to discover that this plant is called the Delicious Monster-he kept a beady eye on it as he walked past making sure it didn’t live up to it’s name!

pond

lilypads

Wasn’t the pond just beautiful? Did you manage to work out how old it is? Do the maths – it was created in 1790!

Jenna enjoyed taking photographs on this outing-the photos on this post are all taken by her.  She loves to capture interesting subjects-and there were so many on this walk.  Here are two more of her shots:

tree

Can you see the face?

path

Walks in nature are best enjoyed with friends!  Thanks Explorers for making our outing even more enjoyable!

karen

Do you remember that I challenged you to send in anything creative for me to post on the blog? (think photographs, drawings, stories, poems)  Well, while I’m waiting for you guys to send me some of your creative expressions we have been busy with our own challenges.  I challenged Mike and Jen to draw one of the beautiful flowers from our walk.  Here are their awesome drawings they made of the March Lily.  I even had a go at it too!

march lily

Mike's journaljen'sjournal

mom's journal

Have you read up anything about the March Lily?  It’s part of the Belladonna family.  When I heard Caroline say that on our walk, I was reminded of a story I read when I was at school: The Go Between.  In that story we read that the Belladonna is an extremely lethal plant!  I was curious to find out if this was indeed the same flower.  Well, it turns out that the March Lily is related to the Deadly Nightshade – which lives up to it’s name! (by the way we don’t usually find them in our country, whereas the March Lily is endemic to this part of Africa where we live!) The Deadly Nightshade also belongs in the Belladonna group, as does the March Lily.  And guess what?  It’s bulb or root, can also cause death if eaten in large amounts! The amazing thing is that medical science has used these plants for good.  If you follow the links you can read up more about them.

Till we explore again, don’t forget to send me anything creative you’d like to share with the other explorers in our group.  I look forward to hearing from you!

 

 

 

 

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