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Blog: Blog2

Global Garden Challenge Winners

Updated: Oct 26, 2020

We challenged followers, families, and wineries to participate in our first Global Garden Biodiversity Challenge and it was a hit!

The goal? To appreciate the natural beauty and biodiversity around us and provide everyone at home with a view of the beautiful outdoors while we were locked away!

For the final part of our challenge, we asked our followers to submit their sightings from all around the world. This wraps up our Global Garden Biodiversity Challenge 2020!

These are some of our lockdown garden highlights from Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route, South Africa.

Cape Protea Flower

Overall Winner of the Global Garden Biodiversity Challenge

We received so many stunning drawings and photographs throughout the challenge. Thank you to everyone that participated!

Past and Present Wildlife Art by Nelis Singels

The overall winner of the Global Garden Challenge is Nelis Singels of @rewild_art on Instagram!

Miniature art of the indigenous animals of Langebaan, West Coast, South Africa by @rewild_art

Thank you to @rewild_art for joining our 21-day challenge so enthusiastically and your daily contributions of amazing hyper realistic miniature animal drawings of the local Langebaan wildlife – past and present.

The beautiful Bokmakierie, a well known bushshrike in SA, and the smaller Rooibandsuikerbekkie

Did you know that according to Nelis, South Africa is a hotspot for tortoise diversity, with the highest number of species right here, most of them being endemic!

Local Rooipensie or Angulated tortoise

This is Nelis’ lockdown challenge completed:

“21 consecutive paintings. One painting a day. No backzies. The white squares are fauna that still visit the garden in Langebaan. The black squares are animals that used to occur in Langebaan, but became locally extinct in the last 300 years. Observing the wildlife in the garden the past three weeks has been wonderful. Calming reassurance in each animal going about its business, blissfully unaware of the troubles that Homo sapiens are experiencing. They are actually flourishing in our 'absence'. On the other hand, painting the animals that have gone extinct from this area served as a stark reminder of the damage that we as humans have already caused. But more than that it serves to remind us that we are not removed from nature. We are part of this planet and just like the Cape lion we can be here the one minute and be gone the next.

This lockdown gave me, as with many other privileged people, the opportunity to realise what is really important to me. If we want to enjoy the things we hold dear we should do what we can to ensure our future on this planet. It is a wondrous place and we should enjoy it, but don't make a mistake planet; earth will be just fine without us.“

Langebaan wildlife species past (in black squares) and present (in white squares)

Notable Contributors

An incredible Bio-diverse Garden in Gauteng – A Microcosm of the World

The pollinators collecting nectar from a Gazania and Strelitzia... as they have been for the past 400 Million years!

Our inspiration for the Garden Challenge was our Grandpa John. He’s been documenting species from his suburban garden in Pretoria, South Africa for over a decade .. with around 100 flower species, over 70 bird species, and an incredible 250 insects. Thank you to my Dad, Dr John Anderson of @microcosmoftheworld for sharing his extensive and diverse garden species with us, as well as his incredible knowledge of natural history, palaeontology and geology. Head to their Instagram account to see and learn more.

Follow their ‘Journey through Earth Time’ and the eventual 100 posts throughout the lockdown from 27 March!

From Pink Orchids to a Burchell’s Coucal visiting the Meerkat sculptures

If you are interested in this content, please check out Gondwana Alive at and on facebook @gondwanaalive – a non-profit organisation founded by Dr John Anderson and colleagues in 1998 to keep Gondwana alive and help stem the sixth extinction.

Nature and Poetry as Captured by Pepasketches

Beautiful nature and poetry by Pepasketches of @pepasketchesking – follow him on Instagram and at for more nature & poetic inspiration!

Three-horned chameleon clambering through thicket

“A walk through the thicket, sun still beat down through the green leaves... She was ruler of the day after all and no questions could be raised to her. My head, forehead rather trickles with sweat... Finding my way back, through a broken down trail... Filled with grass and leaves.... This three horned little monster sways onto my path... I almost stepped on him... And that woulda been disastrous.. So with my heart pounding, hoping it was a snake instead... I flip my frustration through the lens... Ain't he a beauty and nature a giver in its quake?”

Other Contributions

Organic bananas from a Johannesburg garden
Spectacularly vibrant flowers all the way from Australia!

Spring flowers from London in all the colours of the rainbow

Photos: Credit to Nelis Singels @rewild_art , Dr John Anderson @microcosmoftheworld , @pepasketchesking , Dr Heidi Holmes, Dr Rosy Shaw & Dr Margie Stanford

Thank you to our followers for joining our biodiversity journey and for making our first Global Garden Biodiversity Challenge such a success!

To see future contributions, follow the hashtags:

If you like this content, please like our page, follow us on Instagram @winetots, and subscribe to to follow our adventures in the spectacular and diverse Cape Winelands and beyond as we share our top spots!

Click here to check out our previous blog “Tots Celebrating Nature this Lockdown”!

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