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South African Journeys

The Cape of Good Hope was once called the Cape of Storms due to the dangerously unpredictable weather which dashed many ships on its hazardous shores. The Cape is a very worthwhile visit today for its spectacular views, unique ecosystem comprised of nearly 1500 species of the same plant, Fynbos.

Nearby Cape Town with its cloud cloth enveloped Table Mountain can be counted among the world's most beautiful cities.

Bruce Damer

Views of the Cape of Good Hope
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Incoming storm front as seen over the Fynbos on the Cape of Good Hope

Site visitor Comments

By Andynix in South Africa:

Hi, your page of pics from the Cape Peninsula popped up while I was doing a search trying to id some lichens. Even though it wasn't what I was looking for, I enjoyed taking a break from work and looking at your photos.

There are a few facts that are incorrect though, which bothered me enough to email you:

firstly, "...unique ecosystem comprised of nearly 1500 species of the same plant, Fynbos."

Fynbos is not a plant, it is the name of a vegetation type which is characterised by three main plant families: proteas, ericas and restios, as well as members of seven endemic plant families. There are over 8000 plant species in the fynbos biome, over 5000 of which are endemic. On Table Mountain alone there are 1470 different species.

your "Dry flowers of a species of Fynbos" are from the Asteraceae (daisy) family and are called everlastings - "Helichrysum vestitum".

the "Protea flowering in the strange setting" and "Protea in bloom" is the "Leucospermum conocarpodendron" or Yellow pincusion (and, like a daisy, each one of those "stamens" are in fact the styles and stigmas of individual flowers, all making up the inflorecence. The stamens are the little curly bits tucked underneath.)

the "Wright Whale" is actually a Southern Right Whale, so named in the 1800's because they are slow moving, have lots of blubber, and float when dead - which meant they were the right whales to hunt.

your "Flower on Table Mountain" is a Watsona tabularis - indigenous to the Cape Floral Kingdom, and now grown in gardens world wide!

and the "More flowers on Table Mountain" is Erica plukenetti, one of the few wind polinated heaths.

Lastly, it's Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, in Cape Town.


  Cape Town, Table Mountain and environs
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Views of the cliffs on Table Mountain

Cycads at the Cape Town Botanical Gardens

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