About our Garden
In 2007, owner Karen Roos commissioned French architect Patrice Taravella to plan the layout of the garden. His work at Prieuré Notre Dame d’Orsan in France had impressed her greatly. There Patrice had reconstructed a medieval cloistered garden on the site of a restored 12th-century monastery.
“I was drawn to Patrice's inherent discipline. It is almost Cartesian in the tradition of classical French gardens. And he's remarkable in that he really understands the movement of people: how to make a garden hold you and calm you down.”
The garden comprises 15 clusters spanning vegetable areas, stone and pome fruits, nuts, citrus, berries, bees, herbs, ducks and chickens, a prickly pear maze, and more.
Gravity feeds water from a stream by rills into the garden, flowing through ponds planted with edible lotus, nymphaea lilies and waterblommetjies.
Every one of the more than 300 varieties of plants in the garden is edible or has medicinal value. They are also grown as organically as possible and in a biologically sustainable manner. The fruit and vegetables from the garden are harvested all year round for use in two farm-to-fork restaurants. Along the edge of the garden, a natural stream flows from the Simonsberg Mountain to the Berg River, creating a space for indigenous wild olives to flourish. In their shade a collection of some 7000 clivia lilies explode in a spectacular display every spring.
Our head gardener Liesl van der Walt and her team tend the plants that have flourished beyond expectation – so much so that it’s quite hard to believe that the garden is still relatively young.
LATEST GARDENING TIPS
The most zesty citrus varieties to know
Citrus is the world’s most important tree fruit crop and at Babylonstoren we take great pleasure in celebrating this versatile and much-loved fruit.
Rediscovering the citron
Three years ago our exotic grower, Anton Roux, planted two very rare trees in the Babylonstoren garden: Etrog citrons. A now lesser-known variety of citrus, the citron was once a kitchen staple with cultural and religious significance and medicinal properties.
Besticide: How to make an organic insecticide using household ingredients
Surely the reason for growing your own food and flowers is that you know the love and labour you’ve put in will manifest in nutritional value and beauty.