The Cape Of Fire

Alien Mug Shots – Know the Enemy !

The Cape Peninsula is home to a wonderful wealth of unique plant species. The indigenous mountain fynbos is world renown for it’s rich diversity of endemic species. Notable amongst these are the Proteas and close relatives, Leucadendrons and Leucospermum (pincushions) as well as Ericas, Restio (reeds), Watsonia , Ixias and Helichrysum (everlastings). However this floral kingdom is under threat, as never before, from robust and highly successful invasive alien plants. The more prolific of these are all natives of Australia, introduced into the Cape more than a century ago and in many areas have almost totally supplanted the indigenous species. These invasive aliens have four main characteristics : –

    a) They are great guzzlers of water, causing the land to dry out.
    b) As exotics, they have no natural enemies or pests that would help to
    limit their numbers.
    c) They are fast growing and produce masses of seed, which is able to remain
    viable, even after severe fires.


Statutory Categories of Invasive Plants

Invader plants are classified in terms of the Regulations pertaining to the Conservation of Agricultural Resources Act (CARA) 43 of 1983 as amended in March 2001

Category 1: These plants are not permitted on your land under any circumstance and must be eradicated.

Category 2: These plants are not permitted on your land and must be eradicated, unless you have special permission from the Dept of Agriculture to have a demarcated area set aside for research or for other exceptional circumstances.

Category 3: These plants are still permitted on your land, if already established – but new plantings are not allowed as their propagation is  actively discouraged.

To assist in recognising the more common types of invasive aliens in our area, we have assembled a “rogues gallery”  to assist you in recognising a few of these dangerous outlaws. More will follow shortly

Show them no mercy – ERADICATE ON SIGHT !!! 

Alien Species

Click on the specific plant below to see photo and description:

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