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Fynbos

Fynbos is the major vegetation type of the small botanical region known as the Cape Floral Kingdom.

Only five other floral kingdoms are recognised, and these cover huge areas such as the whole of Australia and most of the northern hemisphere. The Cape Floral Kingdom is both the smallest and the richest floral kingdom, with the highest known concentration of plant species: 1 300 per 10 000 km2! The nearest rival, the South American rain forest has a concentration of only 400 per 10 000 km2. 

What is Fynbos?


Fynbos plants are readily recognised by the sclerophyllous (hard, tough and leathery leaved) and microphyllous (small leaved) nature of almost all woody plants and is characterised by having more than 5% cover of Cape reeds. Additionally, it contains proteas, ericas and members of seven plant families found nowhere else in the world. True grasses are also relatively rare. Most of the plants have small, thin leaves, typically defined as ericoid leaves. The word fynbos comes from the Dutch for fine-leaved plants. Fynbos plants include the King Protea, South Africa's national flower, the beautiful Red Disa, symbol of the Cape Province and the popular garden plants, pelargoniums, commonly known as geraniums.

 

 

 

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