Welcome to Cheerio Gardens


Cheerio Gardens was established by Sheila, also known as Box Thompson after she was discharged from the army in 1946. Box was a keen botanist and wanted to establish indigenous plants. The valley was too cold so she decided on deciduous trees and shrubs from the Northern Hemisphere that had beautiful autumn colours, trees such as maples & flowering cherries. Many of the indigenous bulbs were eaten by bush pigs, porcupines and moles. Even the tree ferns were eaten by porcupines during the drought. The garden was established by 3 people : Box Thompson, Audrey (Googoo) Thompson (Box’ Mother) and Station (a Mozambican employee). The walled terraces were all made by hand. Walking through the gardens one can appreciate the love and dedication with which the garden was created. The farm was bought by Box’ Father in 1918 and other than for a period of two years, has been in the family ever since. We welcome you to come and enjoy the peace and tranquility these beautiful gardens have to offer.

Spring Festival

Every year during our spring season, guests from around the world flock to Haenertsburg for the annual spring festival. Cheerio Gardens is the heart of and reason for this annual event. During this time the valley is a wash of pale pinks, reds and vibrant spring green. The farm boasts 9 different varieties of flowering cherries and many unusual varieties of azalea’s. Crab apples and the early flowering azaleas start at the second half of august reaching their peak about mid September. The later flowering azalea varieties and the cherries start flowering in the second half of September and peak at the end of September, beginning of October. The gardens contain rare botanical specimens from around the world.

During this time there are a variety of stalls that sell local art, organic cheese, yummy food and so much more. Magoebaskloof Hotel hosts the annual spring fair festival with a number of stall holders selling all sorts of goods. Haenertsburg hall is also filled with goodies from homemade jams to eats and all sorts of locally made crafts.

End your day of shopping at cheerio gardens where you can retire in the gardens and sit down to a lovely lunch and tranquil surroundings.

In loving memory of Sheila Thompson.