Boophane disticha : Photo courtesy of Kevin Gilll

Mense of the Magaliesberg

The Magaliesberg people are enduring, courageous and often they are pioneers. In a regular series about the Mense of the Magaliesberg, we introduce the stalwarts of the region.

Kevin Gill is a long-standing member of the Magaliesberg Protection Association, volunteers on the Magaliesberg Biosphere Committee, and is a representative on the Steering Committee of the Biosphere. His connection to the Magaliesberg and his interest in the natural environment prompted him to write a fascinating book which is due out soon.

“For years I have toyed with the idea of producing a modest, simple introduction to the Wild Flowers of the Magaliesberg, omitting botanical terminology that would intimidate the ‘first-timer’ and including English, Afrikaans and Setswana common names.  I wanted a guide that is straightforward, uncluttered,” says Kevin, who has done the work with the help of a young computer-wise helper.  And he has had a stamp of approval from one of South Africa’s foremost experts in the field.

“For a long time, Prof Braam van Wyk of Pretoria University’s Botany Department, has been aware of my project. A fortnight ago, we spent a couple of hours with him. His approval and support are truly gratifying.

"The Guide is aimed at tourists, hikers, all people who live in the area, including those whose past opportunities to really enjoy the Magaliesberg were limited, week-end visitors and flower-lovers"

Kevin and Andy Engelbrecht feature more than 530 flower species in this easy-to-use guide which groups flowers according to their predominant colour, making it as easy as possible for the user. The emphasis is on those most commonly seen or of special interest. Each description will give key information on the scientific name, derivation thereof, family, common names (English, Afrikaans and Setswana), identification features, flowering time, habitat and abundance.

Kevin describes the work as a pioneering publication. “It will be the first devoted exclusively to the flowers of the Magaliesberg region. To make it a reality, further funding is needed. A strong vote of confidence was given by E Oppenheimer & Son, which made a substantial contribution. If you believe you can help, whether financially or otherwise, please let us know at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Visit: for a sneak preview.

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