WELCOME TO THE FLOWER VALLEY CONSERVATION TRUST
We work to secure our often-threatened fynbos landscapes, and protect those whose livelihoods depend on fynbos. Many fynbos species have already been lost, and more than 1000 are endangered.
Why should you care?
– Fynbos is the main vegetation type of the Cape Floral Kingdom – one of only six floral kingdoms in the world, and it’s the smallest and richest of the kingdoms.
– About three quarters of fynbos species are endemic to their area – in other words, they grow nowhere else in the world.
– Fynbos grows in nutrient-poor soil, thereby creating entire ecosystems where many other vegetation types would not survive.
– Fynbos provides life for many animal and bird species, like the beautiful Cape sugarbird, (which is endemic to fynbos regions), and many types of very threatened butterfly species.
– Fynbos plants, like other plants, mark the beginning of the life-providing oxygen cycle.
Fynbos – it’s not only about pretty flowers. It’s also about the wildlife living within our fynbos.
The plants depend on the animals. And the animals depend on the plants. And ultimately, we as humans depend on these living ecosystems.
So we headed into our Flower Valley Farm fynbos to give feedback to those who’ve adopted hectares on the farm. And the wildlife that came alive during our drive was inspirational: butterflies, bees, beetles, birds (even two Verreaux’s Eagles and a Black Sparrowhawk), lizards – and loads more.
Just in time for World Wildlife Day
So we’ve put together some of our favourite moments where animals and plants connected to help create life for us.
BE INSPIRED TO PROTECT FYNBOS
Watch thousands of beautiful reasons to care for fynbos – and be inspired to protect it, thanks to this lovely imagery of fynbos, and those working in fynbos (captured by the wonderful Sledgehammer Studio team). Fynbos is unique – but it does need to be protected, and we can all help. Watch this message from Flower Valley Conservation Trust.
WE PROMOTE GOOD FYNBOS LANDSCAPE MANAGEMENT
So, to counter the threats to fynbos, we promote good fynbos landscape management. That means promoting the responsible picking of fynbos for the markets, keeping fynbos landscapes clear of invasive alien plants and encouraging environmental awareness as part of a holistic education – particularly for children prior to primary school.
We do this by working with land users, conservation authorities, government, and a host of other vital partners, in a number of programmes:
• The Sustainable Harvesting Programme – a programme based on science that helps harvesters pick fynbos responsibly, while encouraging informed buying of fynbos bouquets with retailers.
• The Agulhas Biodiversity Initiative (ABI) – a landscape initiative currently coordinated by Flower Valley Conservation Trust that operates across the Overberg.
• The ABI Alien Clearing Project – where we work with land users, land user groups and government to clear thousands of hectares of aliens, while facilitating hundreds of jobs.
• The Flower Valley Early Childhood Development Programme – supporting five early childhood development centres to provide the best possible education for 0 – 6 year olds.
• The Flower Valley Early Learning Centre – serving 27 children in our Centre on Flower Valley Farm. Flower Valley Conservation Trust is based on Flower Valley Farm, near Gansbaai – a botanical treasure in the heart of the Cape Floral Kingdom in the Western Cape of South Africa. We’re a registered public benefit and non-profit organisation.
A new Fynbos Field Guide has just been launched, which will support sustainability in the fynbos industry. The Field Guide for Wild Flower Harvesting is a guide aimed at fynbos harvesters and landowners. The guide provides information on fynbos, the threats to fynbos and the need to harvest responsibly. It also describes 41 fynbos species picked on the Agulhas Plain for the market.
The Field Guide, available in English, Afrikaans and isiXhosa, was produced through a partnership between Flower Valley Conservation Trust and the Universities of Durham and Newcastle, through the Newcastle University’s Economic and Social Research Council Impact Acceleration Scheme. The guide was also published through support from the European Union and the WWF Nedbank Green Trust. READ MORE