Picking Fynbos with Care

Here are some things to think about:

  • When fynbos flowers are removed from the veld, we prevent these flowers from making seeds that will grow into new plants. This is why we should always leave some flowers in the veld.
  • If we do not know which plants can be picked, we could pick rare species that are in danger of becoming extinct.
  • If we allow invasive alien plants to grow in the veld, they could shade the fynbos plants beneath them, and stop them from growing. We should remove these alien plants from the veld.
  • Because fynbos is so valuable, it is protected by law (including the National Environmental Management: Biodiversity Act 2004). For example, it is illegal to plough or clear fynbos veld that has never been cleared before (e.g. to plant another crop in its place). We need to know and respect the rules that protect fynbos.
  • It is illegal to pick fynbos without the correct licenses from the conservation authorities, such as CapeNature. These licenses provide guidelines to help us look after the fynbos.

Understanding how harvesting affects the veld helps us to look after the veld more effectively. After all, if we pick all the fynbos this year, there will be no fynbos to pick in the future. This can have a negative impact on livelihoods.