Time for Noordhoek Open Gardens again

One of the gardens to explore.

It is spring, and in Noordhoek this means gardens are in full bloom: just in time for the sixth annual Noordhoek Open Gardens event.

This year it is being held on Saturday and Sunday October 17 and 18.

Sixteen gardens will be on show – large rambling estates, small and cottagey, indigenous and exotic, shade and sun-loving, water-wise and food-producing.

The Noordhoek Environmental Action Group will offer tours of the Chapman’s Peak Nature Sanctuary, where visitors will learn about eco-systems that once covered large parts of Noordhoek and are mapped as critical biodiversity areas by the City of Cape Town. Guided tours will run at 11am, 1pm and 3pm on both days.

There will be workshops on how to propagate clivias and the correct pruning of bonsais.

Visitors will be able to pick their own vegetables, enjoy wine tasting and buy plants and garden treasures at different gardens. Some gardeners, who are also artists and potters, will allow a peek into their studios.

In line with the times, visitors will be asked to adhere to Covid-19 regulations by wearing masks and maintaining physical distancing.

Partnered by Noordhoek Tourism, the event is organised by On the Verge, a non-profit community greening and social responsibility project. Proceeds from Noordhoek Open Gardens enable On the Verge to continue and expand its community work.

On the Verge was formed 10 years ago to preserve the natural beauty of Noordhoek, while providing jobs for unemployed Masiphumelele residents.

The project employs six gardeners, who can be seen every Wednesday digging, weeding or planting somewhere along the roadsides. To date, On the Verge has planted more than 100 trees and beautified 28 verges. It helps with alien vegetation clearing and maintaining/extending various walking and horse riding paths.

“We have also revamped and maintained Noordhoek’s historic Village Lane Post Office garden and have planted trees in two play parks,” said On the Verge founder, Kathy Fish.

“In conjunction with the City of Cape Town environmental management department, we are now tackling public open spaces, opening up forgotten footpaths and greening some of these underutilised and forgotten spaces for the community and visitors to enjoy.

“We are extremely grateful for the support from our sponsors, from the business community, private individuals and community groups. Many local residents and our two local nurseries have also been extremely enthusiastic and supportive.”

Tickets will be available at the gardens for R25 single entry, R125 for a day pass and R200 for a weekend pass.

Children under 18 enter for free and there will be pensioners’ discounts.