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“Pick your own organic vegetables and prepare them with a chef…”
As the magical Secret Season dawns upon the Overberg, it brings with it the much-needed winter rains. The drizzle of nourishment ignites the blossoming of the fynbos and the flurry of feathered activity that goes along with it. The soft rains bring out a vibrant new dash of green, not only to the endemic fynbos of the region, but also the gardens at Grootbos Private Nature Reserve.
Early mornings see the gardens around the Lodges adorned with beads of morning dew, making them a lovely spot to watch the creatures of the land and sky welcome in the new day. Birds bathe in the small puddles formed on the ground as insects savour the sweet drops of moisture formed on the leaves and petals of the vegetation. The occasional spiderweb hangs heavy in the shape of a jewel-encrusted necklace and the pretty Pincushions glisten like lit-up candelabras in the early morning rays. This forms part of the Golden Hour and lends itself to spectacular photography opportunities.
As much as the rains brighten up the gardens and fields around the Lodges, it also feeds the gardens at our Growing The Future project farm, Siyakhula, which feeds into the Grootbos kitchens. If our chefs are the heartbeat of our kitchens, then the produce from Growing the Future is the life force that keeps it going. This social enterprise project is managed by the Grootbos Foundation, which is where you’ll find the students of the project hard at work growing and harvesting the fresh, organic veggies that feature in the Grootbos menus.
And during the Secret Season, guests have the opportunity to head to the gardens with one of our chefs and hand-pick vegetables that will be prepared in a delicious lunch or dinner. Learn all about the different produce we grow, when is the perfect time to pick them and cook them in the kitchens with professional chefs.
Siyakhula is also where our delicious honey is harvested, where you’ll find our happy piggies and free range chickens, and also where we bottle our natural spring water. The students of Growing the Future is also involved with the Grootbos Nursery, another project of the Grootbos Foundation. Here you can buy a wide selection of endemic plants and flowers for your garden as well as find out how you can start and grow your own indigenous garden at home.
Remember to keep an eye out for the next journey of the Secret Season: Cave Tours & Mussel Foraging