Flora and flower route

Parts of Papkuilsfontein have been managed as small pockets of flower reserves for many years and a 5km flower route has been developed on one side of Papkuilsfontein, taking you through Renosterveld and some Fynbos, where a profusion of annuals and endemic bulbous plants grow.

Nieuwoudtville has earned itself the title of Bulb Capital of the World, as this very small area has the highest speciation of indigenous bulbous plants in the world. In a west-east transect of only 20km, starting at the escarpment edge and stretching east, you travel through 4 different
soil types, supporting four different vegetation types, True Cape Fynbos, Renosterveld, shrub Karoo, and a Dolerite sill. This wonderful diversity owes much to the unique convergence of five different geological forms about which you may read in a file provided in your cottage.

On Papkuilsfontein you will find all soil types represented in the Nieuwoudtville area. Papkuilsfontein is amazingly biodiverse with at least 1,350 floral species on the Bokkeveld Plateau, 80 of which are endemic. Over one third of the endemics are Red Data species threatened with extinction.

Although the greatest shows of flowers are in spring, autumn has its surprises too. After a good summer rain in March/April, you are awarded by a wonderful display of the Amaryllidaceae species, and a few others too.

The Brunsvigia bosmaniae are then out to dazzle you with their bright pink candelabra flower heads, and its sisters, the scarlet paint brush, the pienkkwas and the C flava, are viewing for attention while the Crinum variabile near rivers bend their graceful trumpets to enchant you.

The poisonous Boophone haemanthoides with their lovely scented flowers were widely used for medicinal purposes. Don’t overlook the violet-blue Syringodea longituba and a few more, but come and see for yourself. As this is dependent on autumn rains, we have a contact list to phone you every year and warn that the show will start in three weeks’ time.

A new short flower route (which is open to the public) has been laid out on the northern side of the farm, to maintain the privacy of our own guests at their cottages. This flower route has been designed to take you through a huge variety of bulbous plants in the Renosterveld, just bordering the Fynbos section of the farm.

One of the best places in Namaqualand to view the flowers. Papkuilsfontein is a privately owned farm with a staggering variety of flowers. You can view them at your leasure, no tourbusses, no crowds. Just rest, quiet and a breathtaking colour palette of flowers. You can take a hike to the waterfall or do some bird watching. You will not be disappointed when staying here. Staff are very friendly and helpful. Andre Theron

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