Hello Crawford, It looks like you're smitten with South Africa just as my family is. We go to Cape Town every year and several years ago we bought a house there since we seemed to be "commuting" to Cape Town. So, I'm warning you... travel to South Africa and South AFrican plants can become addicting! I've made my garden in South Africa an indigenous garden...it's now about 90% indigenous South African plants....and I grow lots of South African plants in my gardens at home in Pennsylvania and indoors, too. Very addicting! We usually go to South Africa during December/January for the same reason you're looking to escape Sweden's winter and because that's when I have off from teaching at York College in Pennsylvania. Each year we always try to add an "adventure" to our trip. Two years ago we went on a 10 day "family roadtrip" through several different ecotypes (though I did not emphasize this plant perspective with my grown children) as we visited and stayed at National Parks. Wonderful places to stay. We visited the Karoo Botanic Garden near Worcester and then on to the Karoo National Park. From there down to Wilderness near Knysna. New Plant Nursery--a wholesale nursery is fantastic! The Tsitsikama Forest is also wonderful. Then on to Addo National Elephant Park--this is a must! You won't only be seeing geophytes. You'll also see succulents and amazing trees and fantastic landscapes, dramatic rock formations, waterfalls, animals and all kinds of plants. The most important thing is to get out and "be" in the landscape whenever you can. HIKE. These are not the "ordinary" European or American tourist destinations...but this trip certainly were one of our favorite adventures. This path will get you into the Eastern Cape then you could go on from there. Where can I find out more about Cameron's "advanced" trip? I'd be interested in that. I'm not just a "bulb" person as I'm sure most of us are not. Any unusual plant tempts me and every plant, dull or fantastic, gives me something to think about. South African plants are my passion. I'm a neophyte to this site too, so I hope this response is not too wordy, personal, or non-geophyte oriented for this discussion. Marilyn -----Original Message----- From: Neil.Crawford@volvo.com To: firstname.lastname@example.org Sent: Mon, 26 Mar 2007 7:41 AM Subject: [pbs] New member and questions about Eastern Cape -----Original Message----- From: Crawford Neil Sent: den 26 mars 2007 13:30 To: 'email@example.com' Subject: New member and questions about Eastern Cape Hi all, First I'd like to introduce myself, I'm a Swedish plant lover, married to Ragnhild who loves botany. We have a big garden full of plants, unfortunately we don't have time to look after it properly, plenty of bulbs and geophytes, although I'm afraid nothing very special. We have Leucojum vernum beginning to flower now, later on we have some nice cypripediums, but I don't think they count here, hepatica is another doubtful sort that we have. Other bulbs we have are Hemerocallis, various Irises, and the usual Narcissus,crocus and colchium. Our pacific bulbs are mostly limited to the ones we see on holiday trips, which is really why I'm writing. We had a wonderful holiday on the Western Cape last September, we visited Darling, the West coast NP,then the Bokkeveld plateau, Glenlyon, Papkuilsfontein and Matjesfontein, after that we did Kirstenbosch, Red Hill and the Cape of Good Hope NP. Next stop was the Overberg at Napier, where we visited DeHoop, and Stephen Smuts a local botanist showed us lots of plants. Finally we drove back to Cape Town via Hottentots-Holland where we saw more plants, which Mary-Sue, Cameron and Rhoda have helped us to identify (that was when I found the pbs-list) To top all this we went to Kruger and saw the big five. We really want to do it again, but this time we'd like to go during Febrary, because that's a dismal time in Sweden, and I've heard (from Camerons site) that the summer rainfall flora is good on the Eastern Cape. So we've been planning a trip from Cape Town, through the Overberg again, so we can stay with Stephen, then Wilderness NP or Knysna, stay some time at St. Francis bay (near Port Elizabeth) and then perhaps do a trip up to the Somerset East, Hogsback, Cathcart sort of area. Wainek flower preserve and Barrydale, are places I've read about. We did think of going with Cameron, but I think it's too advanced for us, we want to relax, and even common plants in South Africa, are marvellous to us, so we don't need to hunt for rare plants. We've been reading Tony Avents trip report with Cameron, which has been very helpful, we'd like to do a sort of "light" version of it. What I'd like help with, is what we mustn't miss on a trip from the Cape to Port Elizabeth? We haven't booked anything yet, so if anyone knows a good plant site along the way, or on the Cape, I'd love to hear, I hope this is a suitable subject for the list, as I know many of you do trips to SA to see geophytes. Best regards Neil Crawford _______________________________________________ pbs mailing list firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.pacificbulbsociety.org/list.php ________________________________________________________________________ AOL now offers free email to everyone. Find out more about what's free from AOL at AOL.com.