Tag: autumn

Goodbye Coastal Foraging courses, see you in November!

On a blustery, grey skied morning, our final group gathered at the beach for the last coastal forage of the season.

All our forages are run according to the season, and this one has sadly come to a close for now, but don’t worry – we will be resuming the coastal forages in November!

Reasoning for our seasonal coastal foraging includes: the bitter cold winds and weather at the beach in the colder months,big swells making for dangerous foraging close to the tide line and bigger wave action leading to less seaweed in the rock pools through bashing of the algae and sweeping organisms out of the pools.

If the hold-fast or roots of these washed-away seaweeds remain on the rocks, they will regrow in Spring,Like plants, there are also annual and perennial seaweeds, so in winter some will die off and only grow again in Spring.We give them this break to regenerate and from late spring to early summer is the time when all seaweeds are highest in nutrients with their succulent new growth, bursting with vital vitamins and minerals, highly beneficial for your health.

Here are some beautiful photos taken at our last coastal forage by the very talented Sitaara Stodel.

Coastal Foraging Cape Town

Coastal Foraging South Africa

Coastal Foraging

Coastal foraging Cape Town

Porphyra capensis

Coastal Foraging Cape Town

Seaweed coastal foraging

Coastal Foraging

Coastal Foraging Cape Town

Coastal Foraging - Good Hope Gardens Nursery

Edible seaweed and shellfish

Coastal Foraging

Dead mans fingers

Coastal Foraging South Africa

Coastal Foraging

Coastal Foraging


Organic Veg - Forage Harvest Feast

Edible seaweed

Coastal Foraging course Cape Town

Edible sea lettuce seaweed

Coastal Foraging with seaweeds

Seaweed salad

Cooking with seaweed

Seaweed face mask

Seaweed face mask

Kelp sushi rolls

Coastal Foraging Course

Seaweed coleslaw

Mussel pot with tomatoes and thyme

Coastal Foraging cooking course

Kelp and cocoa icecream

Up next – news of Fynbos Feast events, Veld and Sea inspired pop-up dinners and the upcoming Fynbos Foraging courses dates. Watch this space!

Mushroom foraging

The soil is moist, the days are cool, the rain has fallen.

Its time for mushrooming in the forest.


The atmosphere in the forest is calm and clear and fresh. Under the pine needle mulch, the earth teems with life.

Led by my father, a very keen and experienced mushroom hunter, we were hoping to find the romantically common named saffron milk cap/pine rings or the scientifically named Lactarius deliciosus. The Latin name says it all.

In the parking lot, we met foragers returning from the forest. With baskets in hand and a glint in the eye, foragers are easy to identify.

What was collected and how they were going to prepare them were discussed. Then we were off, excited and dreaming of mushroom dishes already.

Mushroom foraging

These orange-brown fungi start popping up in the Autumn in the acidic soil under conifers. If they are handled too much, they bruise a dark green colour. Knives are used for harvesting and baskets are used for collecting them in, so any spores that are released from the gills may fall back down onto the ground.

Rusulla mushroomThe first mushrooms we spotted were one of the toxic Russula species. These were quickly shown to the children to identify as poisonous. Please – never go mushroom foraging without an experienced mushroomer – there are far too many seriously toxic species out there. Don’t risk it – this is a job for a knowledgeable human, not Google images.

Wild brambles

Wild brambles were spotted. But no mushrooms yet.

We were not the only species foraging in the forest.

Finding ourselves surrounded by a big troop of baboons, we stopped gazing down and looked around. A huge alpha male, mothers, uncles, aunties, sisters, brothers and babies. About 20 Chacma baboons were playing and slowly making their way up the mountain, scratching and nibbling at bits and pieces along the way.


Two massive baboons had recently and unusually raided our house, terrifying our kids in the process. So it was quite special to walk quietly through this playful and nonchalant troop and watch and enjoy them in their own environment as opposed to being fearful of them in ours. My kids now have a different outlook on them and the fear factor is somewhat reduced.

BaboonChacma BaboonsThe real foragers.

And then we found them. Nestled in between some wild Centella asiatica, a couple of beautiful orange caps were winking at us. Our mushroom eyes were now open – let the hunt begin!

Mushroom foraging

Pine ring mushrooming

Mushroom hunting

Pine ring mushroom foraging

Mushroom foraging

Wild mushrooms

Did you know there is such a thing as mushroomers etiquette? Never pick the small ones, rather leave them to grow bigger. He who finds it, picks it. Dont wander over to where a stranger has struck it lucky and start picking, its rude. If you have founds loads and a sad forager walks by with nothing in their basket, you can share a few if you are feeling generous.

Mushroom foraging

Satisfied with our gathered goods and our afternoons adventures, we made our way back down the mountain, discussing recipes and getting hungrier and hungrier with each step.

Mushrooms fried with garlic and fresh herbs in butter. Eaten on toast. Blended up for a hearty soup. Mushroom risotto. Mushroom quiche. Mushroom omelet. Creamy mushroom pasta. Mushroom steaks slow baked with Camembert and rosemary.

Mushroom foraging

Unfortunately I have no food photos to show you – somehow the eating of the food became more important than the photographing of it.  But I can assure you they were the best mushroom omelet and mushroom, Bree and rosemary quiche ever. Next time I will take photos, I promise – for there are more mushroom forages to come. We thank you mycelium. If you want to join us, we will be going on a few very small grouped forages this winter – email roushanna@hotmail.com for more info.

Keep warm and happy Autumn!


Good Hope Gardens Photo Story

Summer is ending. A chill hits the air as soon as the sun falls behind the icy Atlantic Ocean. Autumn is here.

We have been blessed with rain over the past few days and the plants are loving it. It’s the very best kind of rain…a constant drizzle over a few days. It really soaks the earth and gives it a perfect watering.

With rain come growth and life. We have also had new developments at the nursery in the form of interesting landscaping projects, a rehabilitation project, wild food forage expeditions and progress in the Veldkos garden.

Not to mention working on our very exciting book – a big thanks to Robyn Hoepner – editor supreme – for helping make our dreams and ideas become a reality.

So to continue with all these positive vibes

Now you can just relax, kick back and enjoy this fun photo story of Good Hope Gardens…

Balmy days and cool crisp nights

Now that I have posted about the nip in the air….it has of course turned into an Indian Summer….the past few days have been *bliss* here with balmy hot windless days and cool crisp mornings and evenings. Ericas are in flower all over the mountainside and planning for propagating Spring flowering plants is underway.


Syncarpha in tiny flower…..delicate papery pink beauties.


Coastal tree area in the retail. You can tell its Autumn from the leaves on the tree!


Pelargonium reniforme. Its second name means “kidney-shaped” in Latin which is what the leaves are shaped like. Its bitter-tasting root has many medicinal properties.


Agapanthus seed head. We get excited about seed heads. Generally.


 Superboy with awesome Aloe afro.


Child of the Non-GMO corn.

Enjoy the sun, go for a mountain walk and come visit us soon!


We have had an eventful past few days with glorious rainfall and not so glorious visits from baboons yesterday and porcupines last night. The plants have been loving the former and hating the latter! Autumn has definitely hit us….the chilly nights have us making cosy fires and the fynbos is starting to look lush again on the mountainside. Kirstenbosch’s plant order has been delivered and plans for a Spring event here at the Nursery are floating around.

The next few pics show the Good Hope Gardens Landscaping team doing what they do best, the Farmstall roof garden established and flourishing and Baby Girl helping with the potting up….best intern ever!

Steep slope log retaining
Steep slope log retaining

Good Hope Gardens Landscaping roof garden....established and flourishing
Good Hope Gardens Landscaping roof garden….established and flourishing

Little messy Missy
Little messy Missy