Within the Serrania we are lucky enough to have three natural parks, (Grazalema, Sierra de las Nieves, and Alcornocales). El Bosque Botanical Gardens in the village El Bosque is a small botanical garden called “El Castillejo” and it is devoted exclusively to the local and endemic plant species of these mountains.
Due to the Serrania being both Mediterranean and European, many of the tree species are common throughout Europe, whilst most of the shrubs are generally Mediterranean. Most of the flowers and grasses are either Mediterranean or endemic to the area.
Your stroll will take you through several mini ecosystems, each with their own viewing area to sit and appreciate the surroundings.
Why not reserve a hotel in the village?
Continue reading El Bosque Botanical Gardens
In the winter months around the Serrania, you really won’t need to go very far to see more Paper White Narcissus than you could ever dream of.
Around Ronda and the Pueblos Blancos – the white villages – you won’t even need to get off the beaten track. This scented flower blooms in December through to February while the weather is cool, and if March and April are wet and cold they may stay in flower. Continue reading Paper White Narcissus (Narcissus papyraceus)
The Woodcock Orchid is my favourite flower any time I go into the countryside, even though it isn’t always visible since it only blooms from March to June.
To find this orchid really means getting off the roads in most cases and onto farmland or public land in the Natural Parks, preferably to areas that haven’t had sheep or goats present.
Whilst the Woodcock Orchid is found all along the Mediterranean, as far as nature in Ronda goes, you really want to get up to Grazalema, which is where you’ll have the greatest chance of seeing it accessibly. Continue reading Woodcock Orchid – Ophrys Scolopax
The mandragora autumnalis is an autumn and winter flowering beauty here in Andalucia and is a plant totally surrounded in myth and folklore. The mandrake belongs to the Solanaceae or Potato family and has been mentioned over the centuries many times, even in the Bible it was noted as an aphrodisiac.
From September to March it can be seen in olive groves, in fields or even along the verges growing as a large clump of enormous dark green leaves. If you take a closer look you will see the wonderful lilac-pink crocus like flowers, often 10-30 on a single plant and after flowering there are enormous yellow/orange seedpods. Continue reading The Autumn Mandrake