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.
STORIES FROM OUR GARDEN
It’s mulberry season
The sun has started rising a little earlier, and the bees and birds are buzzing and twittering their spring songs. This awakening period between winter and summer is when mulberry trees display their deep-purple glory of berries between the dense canopy of lush, new leaves.
A life less ordinary
Horticulturalist, pruning maestro and, in our view, a botanical alchemist, our beloved Anton Roux recently celebrated a milestone birthday. At 80 years young, his wisdom and enthusiasm makes him one of Babylonstoren’s most valued gardeners.
We’ve got a taste for turmeric
Food sleuths and clued-up plantophiles will have noticed the presence of certain little rhizome that we are especially fond of here at Babylonstoren and that, despite its unassuming appearance when harvested, is one of the world’s most celebrated culinary ingredients.