Nature playground de Hennipgaarde
The site is located between the rowing course accommodation and the village of Zevenhuizen. At the end of 2014, it was purchased by the Recreation Board for the realization of parking facilities for the Willem Alexanderbaan for use at major events. The design was developed in consultation with interested parties and residents.
The Hennipgaarde was opened in May 2018 and the Natuurpolders Foundation took over part of the Hennipgaarde. This management is aimed at restoring and strengthening the diversity of plants and animals.
The Hennipgaarde is 9 hectares. large and has various functions aimed at recreation, nature experience and nature education. For the children there is a play polder where children can play in the green, exercise and discover nature. The Natuurpolders foundation grows different crops on three fields of half a hectare each. There is a fruit orchard with apple, pear and plum trees with a picnic table. Stichting Natuurpolders has built a Salicetum (willow willow) with up to 30 species of willow. A unique pilot whale that is maintained by volunteers. A field of flowers and herbs provides a lot of food for bees, butterflies and other insects.
The combination of functions makes Hennipgaarde an attractive area for young and old and for birds, insects and small mammals.
Where does the name Hennipgaarde come from?
Hennip is Zevenhuizens for hemp. This plant used to grow in the Rotte area. It was used to make rope and linen. Hemp (flax) was soaked, clubbed and then transported to, among other places, the rope factory in Moordrecht and to Rotterdam in a diked piece of water (the current Hennipsloot) next to the Catjespolder (now part of the Tweemanspolder). The hemp was transported via water to the lock from the Catjespolder to the Rotte or via the Catjessloot and Ringvaart to Moordrecht. Remains of this lock can still be found at the Koornmolengat.
Sailing transport via the Hennipsloot After the reclamation of the Catjespolder, the current Hennipsloot and the lock were constructed. This lock, the Zevenhuizens Verlaat, better known as the lock of “Van Vliet”, dates from 1740 and connects the Rotte with the Hennipsloot and the Ringvaart. In the past, the Hennipsloot was mainly used for the sailing transport of hemp to Rotterdam.
A lot of hennip
The word hennip comes back in the name Hennipsloot, Hennipdreef and Hennipkade. And now also in Hennipgaarde. A gaard is a (fenced) garden. Sometimes it also means a paradise.
Every year, the Natuurpolders Foundation makes an inventory of the flora and fauna in order to get an idea of how biodiversity is developing. This started in 2019. More information about the types of plants and animals can be found on the foundation's website.