As a visitor, one of the many striking things you find in Cape Town are the peculiar shaped trees found all over the lower slopes of the famous landmark of the city—the Table Mountain. Frankly, when we saw them, we thought they were very different from what we’d ever seen before. The trees had a flattish crown, with very few branches lower down, that gave it a sort of an umbrella shape. We had a couple of days in Cape Town to ourselves to explore the key attractions and needless to say, everywhere we went, we found these trees, that were almost like an inseparable extension of the city itself.
If you know me well, you’ll also know that I have a fondness for capturing the woody perennials, every time I go traveling. Naturally, here too, I was drawn to them and my curiosity got the better of me as I explored further to understand how these trees came to be here in the first place. Over a casual chat with our guide, I gathered that these are the Umbrella Pines, and although they grew everywhere in Cape Town, they were not indigenously a product of this region.
In fact, they were planted extensively in the 1700’s, and three hundred years later, they had come to be an integral part of the landscape of Cape Town. That was interesting. During the three days we were in the city, we saw them everywhere. Until, of course, we set off for the road trip, three days later.
It was only then, that we found other vegetation taking over. I could tell when the vegetation changed, that we had entered a new territory. Such an amazing variety of flora and fauna —it was hard not to feel drawn to them. Over the next few days, South Africa left us spellbound — its’ magic working its way into our wandering souls.
Joining Parul today for #thursdaytreelove which is a photo feature on Parul’s blog where you get to see beautiful trees from different places. If you’d like to join in, do visit her blog to know more.