Sammy Marks Museum gardens, Zwartkoppies, Pretoria

Sammy Marks Museum rose garden

The rose garden in front of Sammy Marks' house, photographed in early spring

Proof that the South African taxpayer does get bang for its buck: the gardens around the house of pioneering enterpreneur Sammy Marks, now a museum under the auspices of the Public Works Department.

Horticulturalists at the department took over the maintenance of the gardens in 2000 with the brief to resurrect a garden reflective of the heyday of Sammy Marks when the top brass from both sides - Boer and Brit - was entertained at Zwartkoppies (Black Hills) Hall.

The rose garden was still extant, but since Bertha Marks (Sammy's wife) planted the roses of the Victorian era, adapted to a British climate, it was replanted with rose varieties that thrive on the South African highveld. >>