South Africa’s landscape is one of the most diverse in the world. Its Cape Floral is one of only six flora kingdoms in the world. The ecosystem supports an impressive 9,600 recorded plant species, of which 70% are endemic.
Many of the critical habitats of the Cape Flora (including the lowland fynbos, succulent Karoo and renosterveld) are being severely threatened by human development pressures on the land, through ploughing for agriculture and conversion for viniculture – all of which endanger the unique plants and animals that rely on Cape Flora habitats.
FFI’s work in South Africa is focused on the Cape Floral Kingdom. We are developing and applying tools that will help our local partners increase the area of land under effective conservation management. These tools will range from land purchase or legal designation to packages of incentives derived from the sustainable use of biodiversity.
One of those local partners is the Flower Valley Conservation Trust that FFI has coupled with to conserve the lowland fynbos habitats from invasive alien plants and uncontrolled fires, as well as to support sustainable harvesting of wild fynbos and products.
Since the project’s origin in 1999, 56,000 hectares of fynbos has greater protection through sustainable harvesting.