The new section of the Garden Route Botanical Garden has become more accessible through the addition of two more wooden bridges, which were constructed with funds provided by donors. Photo: Ken Gie
GEORGE NEWS - The Garden Route Botanical Garden now boasts two new bridges over the river, which crosses the mini hiking trail twice on the Mushroom Meander.
The 800m trail, in a stretch of indigenous forest to the northwest of the garden, has a variety of mushrooms and fungi growing along the path and is a photographer's paradise. The two bridges were generously sponsored by a local George couple who wish to remain anonymous except by having their first names placed on the bridges.
Ken Gie said this week, "The trustees wish to extend their sincere gratitude to them since the river was quite treacherous to cross, especially after heavy rains, and this is a step in the right direction to turn the trail into a wheelchair-friendly facility. This will enable the disabled to enjoy the pristine beauty of a natural forest in future. It shows that there are folks in George who appreciate the garden and are prepared to contribute towards making it a world-class tourist attraction, which is the trustees' ultimate aim.
"Unfortunately for dog owners, dogs are not allowed on the trail or at the picnic spot. A pack of dogs running around, messing on the path or engaged in dog fights, will spoil the tranquility. There are large areas elsewhere for dogs to romp around freely. The trustees are in the process of compiling a detailed information pamphlet and map, which will indicate where all the places of interest are, and will soon conduct tours for those who wish to learn more about trees, our indigenous flora and the rich historical links to the garden."
The garden is soon to become a hive of activity when construction starts on a new education and research centre. This facility will play an important role in creating awareness of our rare but threatened floral kingdom, which is unique to the Cape region. Anyone who wishes to contribute by providing ideas, material, funds or energy towards the centre, which still needs to be filled after completion, can phone 044 874 1558.
ARTICLE: PAULINE LOURENS, GEORGE HERALD JOURNALIST
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