9th Annual Atlantic Canada Rare and Unusual Plant Sale, Saturday, May 12th 1PM to 4 PM in Market Square
The Atlantic Canada Rare & Unusual Plant Society Presents:
A Rare Seminar and Reception with Award Winning Photographer
“GARDEN OF THE GODS: The Flora and Ecology of Namaqualand”
Seminar 5pm (doors open to public at 4)
Reception with cash bar to follow at 6:30pm
Reception is catered by Paula Buxton of Leo’s Cafe
Tickets through King’s theatre Box Office
- All tickets $30.00 plus HST
GARDEN OF THE GODS: The Flora and Ecology of Namaqualand
Namaqualand is the semi-arid to arid region in the northwest corner of South Africa, comprising an area roughly the size of New Brunswick. Although Namaqualand has no defined political boundaries, it falls primarily within the province of Northern Cape. What makes it so remarkable botanically and striking visually is that it is the home of approximately 4000 plant species, most of which bloom within the same period of approximately one to two months (late July through early September), following the spring rains that normally begin in late April or May. (By comparison, the great spring floral displays of West Australia are comprised of far fewer species.) Although the spring rains can be very sporadic, most years they are sufficient to bring forth good to incredible floral displays, which may be apparent along the main north-south highway commencing around Vanrhysndorp and continuing north almost to the border with Namibia. However, the greatest discoveries are invariably made by persons who go slowly, wander along unpaved secondary routes and farm roads, then get out of their vehicles and walk in search of plant specimens in the highly varied, often rocky landscape.
Freeman first travelled to Namaqualand in 1980 and returned in 2018 for his 40th extended visit. For 25 years, beginning in 1982 he conducted four annual wild-flower workshops at the Kamieskroon Hotel in the little village of the same name. During this period he amassed what is unquestionably the world’s largest collection of photographs of Namaqualand in bloom, although the University of Stellenbosch has the largest picture collection of individual species. Also, through his educational efforts in conservation and preservation, he helped to initiate land purchases that eventually led to the creation of Namaqualand National Park, which begins across the road from the Kamieskroon Hotel and now extends 70km to the coast and outward from there to include 100km. of the ocean floor.
Beginning in 2007 and continuing to the present, Freeman has led a two-week wilderness camping tour in March (autumn), the first week from a base camp on the Atlantic coast in Namaqualand National Park, the second week in the Richtersveld National Park, the spectacular mountain desert in the far north of Namaqualand along the Orange River, the border with Namibia. Some years this trip also provides the opportunity to see and photograph varieties of March lilies, a few striking species that bloom in autumn, but send forth leaves only after the spring rains.
Namaqualand, the small village of Kamieskroon, and the little Kamieskroon Hotel have become Freeman’s second home. In this program he invites you to visit him there.
***All images copyright Freeman Patterson***
Ticket can be purchased the Box Office or by calling 902-532-7704, or online.
Note that a PayPal account is NOT required to purchase online.
All tickets are $30.00 plus HST.
A KING’S THEATRE RENTAL EVENT.
Online ticket sales for this event are closed.