WildFields Apothecary - Walk Lightly on the Earth.
A Place of Great Healing.
We are passionate advocates of native plants – our mission is to promote communal understanding and use of native and medicinal plants of the Eastern Free State – we are dedicated to the conservation of native and medicinal plants and the natural habitats that support these culturally and ecologically significant species.
Spitskop – THEN & NOW.
In 2002 when Allen and I returned to this small farm and that wonderful mountain, we were aghast at the destruction that over farming and present day farming methods had done. It was a quiet sad place, in the evenings sitting outside on what was then a crumbling “veranda” the nights were still, no crickets, no frogs, just……silence….and uncomfortable nothingness kind of stillness.
And so the healing began.
The “Old lands” were left untouched, unsprayed, no chemical fertilizers were used, left to heal and recover. Many fences were taken down, hundreds of snares removed from fences and the mountain, overgrazed fields were left untouched to slowly recover.
Now in the year 2024 - 20 years of REWILDING has transformed this once neglected landscape into a thriving haven for nature and humans alike. Amidst challenges, we embarked on a journey of healing and restoration. Over two decades, our commitment to REWILDING has revitalised the land, bringing back native plants, flourishing habitats, and a renewed sense of vitality.
The fields are filled with wild flowers – birds, bees and wild pollinators proliferate.
A comprehensive Geological report tells us this land, this mountain – is some 230 million years old, and that once, long ago, dinosaurs wandered the valley.
Having done a search in the area and found no Sutherlandia Frutescens plants - we re-introduced Sutherlandia Frutescens to our fields and valleys. This one plant, left to wild seed, has proliferated, and we have many wild plants across the Estate.
There are golden fields of helichrysums, artemisia afra has wild seeded across the southern slopes of the mountain, in the summer the bulbine narcissifolia in swathes of yellow is found across the fields and into lower portions of the mountain.
Still to explore as medicinal plants are many others that occur - Eriocephalus Africanus ( Wild Rosemary) various salvia species - and much much more.
We can now forage and wild harvest, and have started a range of healing and soothing medicinal products, which have become available to purchase, both locally and online.
Our Vision – Entrepreneurship – to grow the business – expand in the local economy- create jobs and more jobs – providing secure employment – ongoing training and skills development within the arena of our wild heritage – the indigenous and native plants that sustain and heal us and the planet.