Elgin Open Gardens is back this year with 10 gardens that are open to the public. The event takes place over two successive weekends running on Saturday, 28 – Sunday, 29 October 2023 and again on Saturday, 4 – Sunday, 5 November 2023 from 9:30am until 4pm.


Not only will you have access to picturesque gardens, you will also be contributing to the bigger picture, as all participating gardens will donate a portion of their proceeds to a local charity of their choice. 

Here are the 10 participating gardens at Elgin Open Gardens 2023:


A plantswoman’s hilltop garden that skilfully mixes unusual indigenous and exotic plants, with a focus on colour combinations. Panoramic views over the Kogelberg biosphere are framed by informal mixed plantings dominated by flowering cherries and roses. Also two ponds & a stream.

Entry: R35
Charity: Grabouw Animal Welfare Fund.
8.5 km from N2 on Highlands Rd.


Image credit: supplied

Elgin Vintners Country House

A recently restored formal garden from the 1920s with original stonework, wisteria pergola, rose beds, and oak copses. Trees include a mature Magnolia grandiflora and a huge tulip tree which must be one of the largest in the country. Magnificent views.

Elgin Vintners wine tasting and sales; light refreshments.

Free entry.

Donations to GAWS welcome.
2 km from the N2 on Appletiser Rd; follow the signs for Elgin Vintners.


Fresh Woods

Rambling, romantic plantsman’s garden with a major collection of heritage & species roses; many rare trees & shrubs, some wild-collected, including rhododendrons, unusual  hydrangeas, deutzias & over 80 Japanese maples; collections of cyclamen, epimediums & lilies; woodland garden under pine. Bamboo walk. WFRS Award of Garden Excellence 2003.

Teas, and unusual plants for sale (Snapscan, Zapper, contactless cards).

Entry: R40. children: 2-12 pay half-price.
Turn off the N2 at the Freshwoods sign (between the Viljoenshoop and Glen Fruin turnoffs)



A suburban-sized rose garden on a working apple farm with companion plants flowing into the adjoining orchards. Roses and Inca lilies form a mixed planting with bursts of bright colour inspired by French and English cottage gardens. Large My Granny roses ramble over a bird bath and lace flowers attract bees. A new garden room with pink roses like Andrea Stelzer, Sylvia and Colby’s Diamond invites guests to the entrance of the garden where a statue of Marieke Prinsloo stands in a pensive mood.

Entry R20. 

Charity: Helderberg Animal Welfare.

3 km from N2 along Viljoenshoop Rd.


Keurbos Nursery Garden 

A large natural garden designed for birds, with both indigenous and exotic sections as well as Acer and heritage rose beds and a large nursery area. Collections of bulbs and buchus, acers and azaleas, rhododendrons, heritage roses and more.


A 3-hectare south-facing hillside of old contoured farmland is being slowly rehabilitated with indigenous planting. Just about everything is propagated by the owner herself, who gardens almost singlehandedly. Many rare plants and forms, some unique to the Elgin area. Bring walking shoes if you would like to see a work in progress. Lovely views onto a bird lake, with a walkway on one side. A tractor and trailer will leave every hour to take you there. 

Garden teas at Keurbos, lunches, a picnic area, and plant sales include vireya rhododendrons, azaleas, camellias & Japanese maples, and a range of indigenous plants. 

Entry: R30 (includes both Keurbos and Sonop gardens). Card, EFT payments. 

Charity: Bird Research & GAWS.

8km from N2 on Highlands Rd. Lavenham


Lothian Vineyards

Bordered by the Palmiet River on one side and a tranquil lake on the other, this 3-hectare garden features a rose arbour, a vertical garden, numerous ponds, a perennial country garden, a woodland garden, an indigenous garden, natural fynbos areas and an orchard. 

Wine tasting and sales, pizza and wine, gourmet teas. Jungle gym and croquet, gentle walks along the river.

Entry: R20.
Charity: Siphila Sonke.
3.6 km down Rockview Dam Rd, off the N2. Ph: 021 859 9901 / 082 565 7869


The Stone Kitchen 

Waterwise organic garden on a rocky, sandy koppie with pergolas, indigenous plantings, and olive trees; organic permaculture kitchen garden, stone and cob building.

Food by arrangement only.

Entry: R20.
Charity: Humane Education Trust, GAWS.
From Grabouw Main Rd, turn up opposite FNB; left at T-junction into Bosbou/Forest Drive, 1st right into Karee through stone pillars, 1st right into Celtis & 1st left into Essenhout.


Wildekrans Country House 

A diverse informal garden at the foot of the Houw Hoek Mountain, fringing the core of the World Heritage Site – the Kogelberg Biosphere. Mature trees, rose garden, shaded lawns, indigenous beds, olive groves, fruit trees, water ponds, streams and contemporary sculptures surround the historic homestead, dating back to 1811.
New this year, AN ODE TO WILD CLIFFS: Moments In Time (exploring what landscapes can mean and what moments in time can be captured through the artful eye), curated by Voni Baloyi and led by Jill Trappler.
Country-style food and farm shopping at the Barn. 


Image credit: supplied

Entry: Donations to Bot River Education Fund. 
Directions: The Houw Hoek main road has been severely damaged in the recent Western Cape floods, but Wildekrans Country House is still easily accessible via a farm road.

N2 from Cape Town

  • Leave the city on the N2 in the direction of Somerset West/Hermanus,
  • Continue through Somerset West and over Sir Lowry’s pass,
  • You will pass the town of Grabouw and Peregrine alongside the N2,
  • About 11km after Peregrine, you will turn left off the N2. The turnoff is opposite Jackal River Farm, at the 1km sign to the Houw Hoek Hotel,
  • Continue slowly down this road and Wildekrans Country House is just across the railway line.

N2 from Bot River/Caledon

  • Continue over the Houw Hoek Pass,
  • Pass the turnoff to the Houw Hoek Hotel and Houw Hoek Farmstall,
  • Take the next right turn off the N2 (about 1km after the Farmstall and opposite the Jackal River Farm entrance), it is hidden so indicate well ahead and go slow.
  • Continue slowly down this road and Wildekrans Country House is just across the railway line.


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