16 Apr 2009

SA Seven Wonders – Fynbos

Author: admin | Filed under: Articles

5. Fynbos

Why would a drab bunch of plants be among the prized natural wonders of Southern Africa? Because fynbos is among the most extravagant genera of plants on the planet and the incredible number of flowering plants is enough to make a plant taxonomist drool. It is for this reason that the father of modern taxonomy, Karl Linne, called the Cape “this is heaven on earth”, even though he never visited the place.

About 8 600 species of the Cape Floral Kingdom are crammed into just 46 000 square kilometers. That’s staggering when you think that the whole of tropical Africa (20 million square kilometers) has 30 000 species. The Cape Peninsula alone has more kinds of flowering plants than the entire British Isles.


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