The official flower of South Africa is the Protea, named for Proteus, the son of the Greek god Poseidon, who could alter his appearance or assume new shapes. Proteas come in many colors and can live in many different conditions. Some people say it’s fitting for South Africa, symbolizing diversity and courage, change and transformation.
We’ve seen many Proteas; we took these photos at the lovely Botanical Garden at Stellenbosch University.
Not far from this bush was a sign with a quote from Nelson Mandela’s Long Walk to Freedom:
I am not a gardener, but I learn from people who are. Their perseverance, joy in natural beauty, and careful tending of things that grow embodies hope and reminds me of God’s tenderness and creativity.