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A vegetation survey of the cape of good hope nature reserve south africa 2. descriptive account



A vegetation survey of the cape of good hope nature reserve south africa 2. descriptive account



Bothalia 15(1-2): 259-292



The reconnaissance survey of the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve that formed the background to the trial of methods reported in the first paper is discribed. A vegetation map is provided and an account given of the physical setting, climate, history and, more fully, the vegetation of the Reserve. Two structural formations are recognized, broad-leaved thicket allied to the coastal forests of the Knysna region, occupies scarcely 3% of the area of the Reserve and is confined to dunes, screes and scarps that are usually well protected from fire. The remainder of the plant cover is fynbos. Its 2 floristic categories, coast and inland fynbos, reflect the 2 major soil types present: transported coastal sands which are usually neutral or alkaline in reaction, and inland acid soils derived from the table mountain sandstone substratum. Four communities of coast fynbos and 6 of inalnd fynbos are described. Fire is the most important biotic factor influencing the vegetation. Many coastal communities, if protected from fire, tend to develop into broad-leaved thicket, whereas some inland fynbos communities exhibit a cyclical, self-perpetuating succession. The vegetation of the Reserve apparently has greater floristic affinity with Langebaan and Cape Hangklip than it does with table mountain despite the fact that the latter is geographically closer.

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