A stroll in a tiny garden …


‘Benvie’ is a garden in the KwaZulu Natal Midlands, at Karkloof some 15 Km beyond Howick, which was established in 1882 by a Scottish immigrant cabinet maker, John Geekie. Naturally (haha) his interest was mainly in trees, and there are some really old conifers and eucalypts.  Some of the latter (mountain ash) have a circumference of some seven metres.  However, his garden allowed space for sweeping lawns, and vivid colour is added by, mainly, rhododendrons and azaleas.  There are also water features and a stream, and birds abound.

You might imagine that this would have taken some space, and probably expect a couple of acres, or a hectare? Actually, the garden occupies some 30 hectares, or 74 acres! The ‘stroll’ on the main path open to visitors is about two kilometres long.  Arrangements to view can be made with John Geekie’s great granddaughter, in residence.

Our visit just over a week ago was part of my birthday celebration, and we started with lunch at Yellowwood Café just outside Howick, which has a distant view of Howick Falls, boasts farm animals including a miniature horse  (a pig bit young R, but she was careless) yellowwood-cafe

as well as some buck which had left the scene before I got my camera ready, and donkeys in football jerseys. yellowwood-zebra

On to a small selection of the pictures I took of  the garden:


benvie-hedge benvie-below-car-park benvie-pond-1 benvie-pond-2 benvie-pond-3 benvie-woods

Finally, we returned via a stop for afternoon tea at The Farmer’s Daughter on the outskirts of Howick which boasts this view of a branch of the gorge into which the falls plunge.gorge-from-farmers-daughter

© October 2016 Colonialist (WordPress)

About colonialist

Active septic geranium who plays with words writing fantasy novels and professionally editing, with notes writing classical music, and with riding a mountain bike, horses and dinghies. Recently Indie Publishing has been added to this list.
This entry was posted in Africa, Excursions, Gardens, Nature, Personal Journal, Photography and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to A stroll in a tiny garden …

  1. By the bye do you really have zebras just roaming around?


  2. Lovely photo’s , you set them out really well. perhaps you should give lessons to those not so talented.
    No names! No pack drill!


  3. The Asian says:

    Looks like a great place to spend a get old day. I hope that you had a great time and best wishes to you


  4. Veels geluk, Col! Hoe gaan dit nou met klein R?


  5. Belated greetings. Love to see local photos.


    • colonialist says:

      Thank you. I wish I could have flooded the post with them, but there is a limit to how many can be handled by system and viewer!

      Liked by 1 person

        • colonialist says:

          Yes, but my system often goes into rebellion when I visit him!


          • A few too many photos occasionally methinks? Ten mins to load?


            • colonialist says:

              That is the problem. Also, the chunks of story he serves tend to be so large that, although he has certainly captured my attention, I decide to return later. Later often doesn’t happen, overtaken by more recent offerings.

              Liked by 1 person

            • disperser says:

              I am trying to slow the pace of today’s entertainment. “From breakneck, to glacial!” is my motto. People need to slow down and enjoy life.

              I’ve given my suggestion before, by I’ll repeat what I consider the best way to enjoy my stuff:
              1) bring up any of my posts.
              2) go make a cup of tea
              3) call parents or sibling as you sip tea
              4) make a run to the drugstore (or equivalent) and buy eye-drops.
              5) get a few snack ready along with another cup of tea.
              6) sit and enjoy the brilliance that is me.

              Alternatively, get a faster internet hookup.

              By the way, none of this would be necessary if people, anyone, really, ever clicked on links to my photo galleries. If you go back to my early posts, you will see sparse use of photograph with concise (but still brilliant) writing and a link to the gallery associated with the post. Three people might click on it, and one of them was me. One other was my sister.

              It then occurred to me I was mainly writing for my own amusement, and I don’t mind wading through hundreds of photos and thousands of words.

              BTW, one can also break up the reading into multiple sessions seeing as I’m not currently publishing as much as I used to.


  6. Stephanie Haahjem says:

    Wow! What a lovely day it must have been! Thanks for sharing with us, Les.


  7. de Wets Wild says:

    Seems you had a beautiful birthday, and we wish you many, many more of the same!


  8. elspethc says:

    What a lovely place to be for a birthday. Best wishes


  9. Nice place to include for birthday celebration. Enchanting, animals and room to really wander.Cool


  10. equinoxio21 says:

    A nice stroll. Many happy returns of the day, Col.


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