King Protea. The national symbol of South Africa. It was actually already in New Zealand, not so long time ago, that I got to learn about these amazing flowers from a South African friend. I didn't even know such a beauty existed... Last weekend, we spent some days on a Protea farm. Each and every single one of them left me speechless... Do you want to know why?
So, what is a Protea, you might wonder... These beautiful flowers, known for their wide variety, were named after the ever changing Greek God, Proteus. They grow mostly in the Southern Hemisphere, in bushes. They love the sun and are pretty hardy. Proteas have extremely soft, almost cotton like, long petals. You touch them once and never want to let go, believe me... Their smell is very gentle and sweet, almost hard to sense. Their light pink-white beauty, especially when the flowers open up, just take your breath away! I spent quite some time just looking at them, running my fingers through the soft surface, observing how the petals grow one by one, how the opening blossom reveals a little piece of magic!
The owners of the farm export the flowers to Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan and to the US, and also supply some local flower shops. They can last pretty long and are really decorative, thus can make a bouquet truly unique. Not even to mention if they just stand alone. The white ones are more precious, I was told. They make a perfect home decor. We were so lucky as the next shipment was due soon, and the flowers were freshly cut during our stay. We got some beautiful pieces to take home as a lovely weekend souvenir... :)
We were absolutely blown away by the Proteas. A real flower power moment... And then, the cherry on top - we discovered a secret garden, just nearby the Protea plantations, a once stream transformed into the most magical pond ever... a tropical version of Claude Monet's impressionist waterlily heaven...
Just like in Giverny in France, except for palms and ferns surrounding the little lake... Really inspirational! The owners had a great eye for the design, creating a piece of paradise out of nature, with nature...
We had a bit of rain, a bit of shine. A bit the four seasons in a day, so usual here. All special in their own way... All made me feel so special.
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