12 Apr 2023
Welwitschia, Quiver tree, Hoodia. Lithops, Baobab. Not to forget the camel thorn tree. Despite its rather dry climate, Namibia has an amazingly diverse and fascinating flora. A good overview and introduction is provided by the new website of the Botanical Society of Namibia (BOTSOC).
Around 4,300 plant species and subspecies can be found in Namibia, the website tells you. Areas with particularly high diversity include very dry regions such as the Succulent Karoo in the southwest and the Kaokoveld in the northwest of the country. More than 1,000 species are endemic or almost endemic, i.e. occur exclusively or almost exclusively in Namibia.
The website serves the Botanical Society's aim to raise awareness of the unique flora. Founded in 1997, BOTSOC has been providing information about plants and their traditional use by humans for more than 25 years. The organisation also campaigns for the conservation of the plant world.
One of the biggest problems are introduced plants such as cacti, which are spreading rapidly and displacing the native flora. Therefore, BOTSOC has even dedicated a separate section on its website to combating these "alien plants".
A tip for plant fans among Namibia holidaymakers is the Botanical Garden in the heart of Windhoek. It is located on the south-eastern slope of the hill that separates the city centre from the residential district of Klein-Windhoek. The entrance is at the Namibia Botanical Research Institute (NBRI) on the hilltop.
At the institute you will also find a wide range of books on plants of Namibia and the region for sale. The website of BOTSOC provides an overview and the opportunity to order books. Those who would like to support the work of the Botanical Society can find options to "get involved" here.
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