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Harry Goemans Garden Centre – a review

Harry Goemans Garden CentreAbout two weeks ago Barbie and I took a drive to Noordhoek to visit Harry Goemans Garden Centre. I’d read about the nursery somewhere and it was on my list of nurseries to visit and then Harry himself offered me some advice by commenting on this blog so we decided it was time to make the effort and travel the few extra kilometres to see what we could find.

About a forty-five minute, very scenic drive from my home to Noordhoek, we found Harry Goemans Garden Centre quite easily, situated on the Kommetjie Road in Sunnydale. The view from the road of the nursery is unimpressive but first impressions were soon put aside once we entered the garden centre. We found a stunning nursery with lovely, well cared for plants and an interesting range of paving slabs and related concrete items (such as edgings, cobbles, sleeper steps), many of which I believe they manufacture themselves which would account for the prices being very reasonable.

We did a quick run through the nursery to see what was on offer and then a shower of rain motivated us to seek refuge in the most charming little coffee shop they have on site, called Easy Dig Café. It was warm and cosy with a roaring fire creating a friendly, welcoming atmosphere. After a few cups of coffee and wonderful croissants, we were recharged and ready to “shop”. (Seriously, the coffee shop alone is worth a stop if you are in the area). We wandered around the nursery picking up plants and immediately had someone carrying and sorting our plants for us (the service was unobtrusive, helpful and great! 10 out 10 for that) and I was delighted to see a lot of plants I’ve been looking for available for sale here.

They have a wide variety of hardy, indigenous plants on offer as well as lots of exotics. I saw a lovely selection of Hellebores (very nice size plants which are obviously more mature than the ones I bought – they are only the second general nursery I’ve found them at, but the first with such large, healthy looking specimens), lovely large sized Clivias, of course the usual Camellias and Azaleas I’m seeing at all the nurseries at the moment. I was impressed by the condition of their plants. For the past few weeks I’ve had difficulty buying anything at my weekly visit to the two usual nurseries I frequent – simply because I’m seeing the “same ol’ same ol'” plants there every week, and everything is looking a bit tired and “wintry-fied”. Not so at Harry’s – I managed to part with a good amount of cash simply because they had a number different plants there that I had on my list of “thing to buy” and the plants all looked great!

As can be expected they offer pots and planters of all shapes and sizes, hardware and garden tools, gifts and décor accessories, a dedicated irrigation supplies department, and all the garden necessities like fertilisers, composts and mulches you expect to find at a one stop garden centre.

Was there anything I didn’t like? Not really – I couldn’t fault them but I was a bit disappointed in the selection of grasses. I would have liked a larger selection and didn’t find any of the grasses I’m looking for. But I suspect this is the wrong time of year to expect a great selection of ornamental grasses at any nursery in the Western Cape.

[one_half]Easy Dig CaféEasy Dig Cafe[/one_half]

[one_half_last]Shade plantsShade plants[/one_half_last]

[one_half]Exotic shrubsExotic shrubs[/one_half]

[one_half_last]Interesting nik-naksInteresting nik-naks[/one_half_last]

For the record:
We did not announce ourselves, they were unaware of who we were and this is an unsolicited review of a nursery I will travel the extra kilometres to visit again!

Where to find them:
Harry Goemans Garden Centre, Kommetjie Road, Sunnydale, Noordhoek.
Telephone: +27 (0)21 785-3201

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(Photographs © Barbara Mueller-Thiart)

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