Recently, a few of us creatives visited the Durban Botanical Gardens.  It was a beautiful day and we had a hugely satisfying time snapping away at the photogenic surroundings.  What a privilege to visit this haven with like-minded Durbanites.

These large significant gardens have a rich history.  They were developed in 1849 as a station for growing trial agricultural crops and are the oldest surviving Botanical Gardens in Africa.

The plant life is breath-taking, and so many of the other elements of this, Durban’s well-run and oldest public institution are intriguing.

Here is some of what I saw:

This bright banana petal seems to be pointing the way…

Bright Red Banana Bloom Petal

A large round pond in the centre was ablaze with lumo polka-dot green leaves and gentle spiky pink water-lilies

Bright almost Luminous Water Lily Leaves

This tender installation is a special artwork by Nicci Fourie featuring metal cut-out children holding hands.  They are walking in a spiral line,  representing a cochlea and illustrating the fact that children must be heard.
Durban Botanical Gardens - Tender art metal installation by Nicci FourieThe Orchid House is an exotic oasis brim full of bright green tropical foliage and colourful blooms

The Orchid House - A bright glimpse through the windowThe Gardens are home to both indigenous and exotic plant specimens from the sub-tropics.  The height and rhythm of this ‘orchard’ of palm trees brought me delight.

Palm tree trunks - Strong a rhythmical!The gardens are also home to a host of alien invaders – all safely housed in an enclosed area.  They are a visual reminder of what should not be growing in our area.

We finished the day off at the well-supported tea garden.  The simple nostalgic tea and eats were served quickly and heartily.   If you are close to Durban, and it’s been a while since you’ve visited the Botanical Gardens, this weekend may be a good time to go back and enjoy some deep soul restoration.

Wooden Disc SignsEvents – Visit the Durban Botanical Gardens Event Page. The Gardens host a number of major musical events, the next one being Gangs of Ballet on Mother’s Day – the 10th of May.