Monday, 15 May 2017

Summer celebrations at Fynbos


Summer was the time for marvelous celebrations at Fynbos. The smallest was 30 or so in De Perdestal and the largest was 170 in the Pavilion with huge tent over the pool. Feedback was great so the team is very happy.

Ciska and Stan







Photographed by Agape 
Comment

We couldn't have dreamed of the happy day we had when we started this journey! Thank you again and we will be back!

Love

Cisca and Stan 

Jaco and Stephanie






Kim and Adam






Adene Photography

           Comment

           We are so happy that you were able to make our wedding possible.
         From the beautiful chuppah ceremony under the oak tree, to the blistering heat, 
         and then the relief from that perfectly placed pool.           

         Kim & Adam


          Maryna and Roderick








         Comment

         Thank you so much for all . It was indeed a day all are talking about and it is thanks to you !  
         Maryna & Roderick

             Sharon and James






Photographed by Koa Photography 

Comment

First and foremost, Wendy and I would like to thank you all specially for having us celebrate Sharon and James wedding at what one can only describe as a magical place, Fynbos Estate. It is not only the estate itself , but by those who work it, love it, protect it, give it living character and is wonderful to see such passion.

The event is over , Sharon & James left on Sunday for their honeymoon but we all cannot stop talking about it, and we are amazed at how so many of our family and guests, simply loved it.

Gail, a very special thanks to you for the co-ordination/planning of the event, the weekend and day , and it is often not realised what goes in behind the scenes to create such a day. To you and your team , you made it wonderful and special for all of us, and the hard work , I trust rewarding. Oh , and the food was delicious!, even if my 23 minute speech was making you nervous. Remember I promised 41 minutes!

The weekend stay over from Friday to Sunday, just topped it all, especially for the family.

Johan and Gail, as owners and hosts, wow, your warmth towards your guests is amazing , from our family ice breaker (we met James parents that day) "wine tasting" on the Friday, followed by our braai to making no problem an issue, even to a little glue that I needed for my sandal that had a "blow-out".  

Anya and Jeanne 






Cecilia 21st





Monday, 8 May 2017

Volunteers

Once again we have many thank you’s due to volunteers who helped us in the second part of 2016 and early 2017. These included Yoann, Nina and Tina from Germany, Anthony and Margot from France and Nick from South Africa
Everyone left happy we think and we got some heart-warming emails.

Winemaking

Nina and baby Winston



Margot and Leena


Yoann
"I spent one month and a half in Fynbos as a volunteer and it was a really great experience. When you enter this place, first you fall in love with this beautiful spot in the middle of the mountains and when you fall in love again but this time you do this with all the persons working there and the owners. It was really great to see these people every day; they all had good vibes and a lot of experience and knowledge to share with me. 
I already saw the wedding and events season, I can't wait to go back there to help with the harvest and discover this atmosphere which makes a really good wine.
Now that I'm back in my country I really know that I was lucky to live in a place like this with beautiful people in this beautiful country. 
Thank you a lot for everything!!!”

Yoann

Nick

Is like 5 months or something sinceiI’ve been there? So by now you and Johan must be on the cover of 'natural medicine' with that diet. (But loved every moment of ever inch gained!)  I often think of that time , it was more challenging than the places I’ve been to before in terms of work and general relationship  I smile about it as I’ve learned many great lessons , with you I had a lot more time to figure things out regardless how 'clownish' it might’ve looked I always appreciate the slowness in experiencing something new …I’m very grateful the experience and thought about you a lot with this incredible draught , I do hope you have a lot of harvest , I think I would’ve enjoyed the grape pickings , can you imagine me? I can hear you say 'nick you must bend' …. I trust you are well ,do send all my love to Gail and Johan , also for the dogs , I really enjoyed Karl , he was one of the coolest dogs I’ve met in a while! 
I hope we continue to write, if not reconnect again eventually

Much kindness

Nick 

Leena and Grace

Fynbos Estate was the perfect place to be for my 1 month wwoofing plans! Escaping from cold & grey Europe for a while to discover a country that had been on my list for such a long time was great! And it was perfect timing, too: after a week of helping with different things on the farm (weeding the vegetable garden, labelling bottles, sanding & painting chairs, etc.) the harvest started. What a gift to learn about and participate in wine making at a small-scale winery! Joining the picker team in the morning to harvest beautiful (and tasty ;-)) grapes while glancing at the beautiful landscape every now and then was simply gorgeous. And for sure it also teaches you a lesson about the hard work wine making involves… After a few hours of sun and heat and bending down one does look forward to helping with the grape processing in the winery during the afternoon - hard work as well, but shade, cool temperatures and Charles & Doubt who are truly fun to work with. And lucky me to also have met Andy - the associate wine maker - and his wife Becky during the last week of my stay! Their enthusiasm and knowledge-sharing was simply great! Cooking with the other wwoofers in the evening was fun too - though I would recommend other wwoofers to split up in cooking teams as to have a free evening every now and then during the week (weekends are off anyway!). 4 weeks went by super-fast. But I very much enjoyed the experience, the learnings, the people at the farm and all the stories - and also the great accommodation! Will be back to South Africa for sure... 
Leena Kuhne

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Tree work and holding thumbs




After two of our giant 150 year old oaks crashed to the ground (making us think the 3rd world war had started), we brought in Leon Visser and his team to take a look at them. Nothing to be done about their age, dryness and rot, he said, but a severe pruning to balance the trees better would prolong their life.



So that’s what we have done and now we just have to hold thumbs. We are very impressed with Leon’s work. Lots was taken off but the trees still look good.

Pruning 
Before
Lots of clearing and after pictures

Thursday, 13 April 2017

PAARDEBERG SANDMINING UPDATE




Mines we are contesting

The mines on the other side of the Paardeberg that we have appealed and the mine next to Fynbos both await responses. We will keep you posted

Illegal extending of the DE HOOP mine

Apart from the above mines there is an existent sand mine on DE HOOP farm in Joubertskloof near us that was passed and not contested.  Visitors to Fynbos have commented on how terrible it looks right here in the heart of the mountain and how bothered they are by the sand trucks and the dust they have to share the road with.

3 areas
Area across road

Watching the mine carefully, we have seen that the applicants have extended their mining well past the legal consent given. They asked for 2 areas of 2.5 hectares and have already mined more than 5 hectares and are continuing to mine additional areas besides. The extent of the mine can be seen on the photos with and additional illegal area mined across the road as well as preparation being made to mine on yet another large area.

Second area has begun

We have complained to the Swartland Municipality who say they will look into it as well as to the DMR (Department Mineral Resources). It is rumoured that the latter has little capacity to deal with their own sector. (For example the illegal mine on Granaatfontein after a year is still just in the state it was left).

Paardeberg mining on SABC

This Sunday Evening on Focus @ SABC2 there will be a program on sand mining in our area. 

50/50 to do a program on illegal mining in Gauteng and rumour has it Carte Blanche will do something too

We will keep you posted.