by Natia van Heerden, Executive Chef @Summerfields_K
Since I can remember, I’ve been surrounded by roses because of my mother’s profound obsession with them. Our small garden in Johannesburg had around 200 rose plants and Ilse use to tell me how she’d love a farm full of roses one day.
And so, one school holiday we drove through the Sabie Valley and ended up buying a farm after the owner had to tow us out of a mud pool, on a Sunday afternoon. A couple of years later we bought the neighbouring farm called Summer Fields.
Hazyview’s climate is not nearly suitable for growing roses, the rainfall is in the wrong season, it’s way too hot in summer and the roses need a lot of attention during the high rainfall months when the risk of contracting diseases like red spider and botrytis is sky high. Fortunately, our cultivation facility ensures that the plants’ growth is successful. Growing roses is extremely labour intensive; spraying for diseases twice a week, mixing plant food with water three times a week while pinching, bending and de-budding must be done daily.
Ilse spent time in Italy, France and Holland at horticulture shows picking out varietals before planting each and every plant herself. She finds it calming and is in her element when working with the roses.
The lodge and spa came next, with the idea of being in a luxurious tent to resemble camping- but in style- surrounded by nature and lots of roses. We have selected twelve varietals and named our suits after each of them. Roses bring a certain warmth and elegance to a room; with pure fragrances that brings a smile to any guest.
Today we have over 20 varietals, where the Glam Girl and the Red Eye are our newest arrivals. We are also very excited to receive new fragrance varietals within the next couple of weeks!
All our roses are sold directly from the farm, so why not pop in for a cappuccino while we make a bunch up for you.