Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, Cape Town
Camphor Avenue Kirstenbosch Gardens
The land occupied by Kirstenbosch Botanical gardens was previously farmland.
The earliest recorded history starts back in 1660 when van Riebeeck who was then commander of the garrison at the Cape planted a hedge of wild almonds and brambles to form the boundary of colony.
This hedge is still visible in the Gardens as they are today.
The whole of the area where the gardens are used to be covered in timber and it was harvested by woodcutters for the colony.
Over the years the land was owned by a number of families and finally in 1895 was purchased by Cecil John Rhodes.
Statue of the Cape Clawless otter
Restaurant - Kirstenbosch gardens
A number of years ago this beautiful avenue which formed part of the road to Constantia Nek came under threat as it was very narrow and made it difficult for cars to drive through.
The authorities wanted to widen the road and to do so would have had to pull out many of the trees.
They however came to their senses and moved the road to the east outside the gardens leaving the beautiful Camphor lane intact.
In 1902 when Cecil John Rhodes died he bequeathed the land to the people of Cape Town as part of his Groot Schuur estate.
A Cycad growing in Kirstenbosch
One of the many varieties of Protea in the garden
In the Dell under the trees that now grow there one can still visit Colonels Bird's bath which was built in about 1811 and is bird shaped.
The bath is fed by four springs and its water is chrystal clear.
Many shade loving plants such as ferns, tree ferns, plectranthus, impatiens and Mackaya bella have been planted in around the Dell to enhance its beauty.
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