Collecting Driftwood from the Beach in South Africa

We had a fun day collecting driftwood from the beach in South Africa in late August 2017. We spent 5 hours collecting driftwood from the beach at a beach near East London in South Africa.

Collecting driftwood from the beach in South Africa

Collecting driftwood from the beach in South Africa


Well, we say it was a fun day collecting driftwood from the beach, but it was also hard work! We foolishly wanted to try make less trips to the car to load up our collected driftwood pieces, and carried a bit too heavy for each trip from the beach to where we had parked the car. We were sooooo stiff that night and the next day! Sore legs, arms, shoulders, hands, neck, back.
Packing driftwood into a small car

Packing driftwood into a small car – already so many driftwood pieces in the car and still more pieces to still try to fit in!


I guess very many squats in 5 hours to pick up the driftwood pieces added to the aches and pains too! Not to mention all the times we bent over from our back down towards the rocks or sand instead of bending at the knees and squatting! But still, simply collecting driftwood from the beach wasn’t supposed to hurt us!
carrying driftwood on the beach

Carrying driftwood on the beach – carrying too much at once!


Carrying a bundle of driftwood

Carrying a bundle of driftwood – AND 6 packets of driftwood in one hand – see the first picture on this page!


But of course we laughed about our aches and pains that evening, and the next day, and about how unfit we were, and were quite prepared to go collecting driftwood from the beach for 5 hours or more all over again as soon as possible. Maybe collecting driftwood more often might even make us more fit!

We didn’t go collecting driftwood from the beach in the few days after that though because we wanted to start lightly disinfecting and rinsing some of the driftwood pieces we’d already collected.

area for keeping new driftwood pieces

area for keeping new driftwood pieces


We needed to move some of the pieces from the new driftwood pieces area to the wire baskets we have on our fence for our “ready to go” (already lightly disinfected, rinsed, dried naturally outdoors in the sun for a few days, measured and sorted) driftwood pieces in different lengths – we place each specific length group into their own wire basket or baskets on our fence , so that we could free up some space in the new driftwood pieces area for the next time we did a driftwood collecting beach trip.
cat exploring new stock of driftwood

cat exploring new stock of driftwood


that cat loves his driftwood

that cat loves his driftwood


Some of our stock of specific lengths was running a bit low, so having some work to do at home was another reason not to go collecting driftwood from the beach again anytime soon. Promise! We weren’t just being too lazy or sore to go get more driftwood pieces in the following few days!
driftwood stock in wire basket

driftwood stock in wire basket – some of our “ready to go” driftwood stock in our wire baskets was getting a bit low


We did also have two customers who sounded like they needed some driftwood pieces that were mostly in our new stock rather than in our stock piles we already had. So we wanted to choose some pieces for them so that we could photograph the pieces and get the ball rolling. (Email them the photo or photos, let them choose their favourite pieces, lightly disinfect and then rinse the pieces, and then let them dry naturally in the sun for a few days before we’d pack the pieces and get them posted off from Postnet).
driftwood for aquariums in South Africa

driftwood for aquariums in South Africa – or for whatever purpose!


Actually the one customer just needed the driftwood pieces for her order lightly soaked and then rinsed, rather than lightly disinfected and rinsed, as the driftwood pieces were to be used in fish tanks. Any further disinfecting or soaking or rinsing or anything else like boiling the driftwood pieces would be up to the customer to do after she received the pieces. We do not do any boiling of our driftwood pieces ourselves.
driftwood for fishtanks in South Africa

driftwood for fishtanks in South Africa – or for whatever purpose!


There were some lovely driftwood pieces in our new batch of collected driftwood – perfect for use in fish tanks.
nice driftwood pieces for use in a fish tank

nice driftwood pieces for use in a fish tank – or for whatever purpose!


twenty pieces of driftwood on two tables

twenty pieces of driftwood on two tables – driftwood pieces ideal for use in wedding table centerpieces or in other wedding decor arrangements


The other driftwood customer was looking for fairly long pieces (45cm to 60cm, and 60cm to 80cm) to make a driftwood chandelier, but that order fell through as the customer was called away on business for several weeks, so we sold almost the same batch of 20 driftwood pieces to another customer who was looking for the same or similar driftwood pieces (that we’d already measured and sorted for the other customer) to use in her wedding table centerpieces at her wedding in Durban in South Africa.
driftwood pieces for wedding decor in South Africa

driftwood pieces for wedding decor in South Africa


But back to collecting driftwood from the beach on that day in late August when we spent 5 hours collecting driftwood. There were quite a few more pieces than usual as there’d recently been some exceptionally strong waves along the East London coastline, waves that came up the shore much higher than usual, even doing some damage in some areas like to the sidewalk and little wall along the East London beachfront near Eastern Beach.

We quite often usually go collecting driftwood from the beach on the way home after a morning of trading at a local craft market, but then can only squash about 2 to 4 small packets of driftwood pieces into the car because the car is already so full of our craft items and craft market tables etc. It was nice to this time have lots of space in the car. We’d made a special trip to go collecting driftwood from the beach after a recent stormy ocean event along the East London coastline. And that space was needed – there were so many driftwood pieces on the beach! What fun! And sore muscles later.

Rocks and driftwood

Rocks and driftwood


Packets of driftwood at the beach

Packets of driftwood at the beach


It got quite windy a bit later on the beach, and a little chilly, but we didn’t want to stop collecting driftwood pieces. We had to stop eventually though, as the car eventually got so full it could hardly take another piece!
Driftwood up to the roof of the car

Driftwood up to the roof of the car – and poking through to the front of the car between the two front seats!


Terry and Tony while collecting driftwood at the beach

Terry and Tony while collecting driftwood at the beach – just messing about – and she wore seaweed in her hair


We did take a bit of time to enjoy ourselves though too, taking selfies and other photos, just fooling around and having fun, while collecting driftwood from the beach in South Africa.
driftwood snake on the beach

driftwood snake on the beach


man flees from driftwood sea monster

man flees from driftwood sea monster


seaweed and driftwood

seaweed and driftwood

If you live in South Africa and you’d like to order some small (from 5cm to 80cm lengths) driftwood pieces for your next craft or decor project, or for your fish tank or aquarium, or for your beach themed or rustic themed wedding decorations, or have some sort of special request in mind – want holes drilled into the pieces you order, want us to make you some craft or decor item with driftwood pieces, etc etc, contact us and let’s start communicating!

© Copyright Teresa Schultz and Tony Flanigan 2017