Afro-montane forest Assegaaibos in Fernkloof

Afromontane Forest

 Afromontane forest – Fernkloof nature reserve

Assegaaibos an example of an Afro-montane forest

Walking in the Afromontane forest – Fernkloof nature reserve, we approached the pristine Afromontane forest called Assegaaibos .The tree communities known as Afromontane Forest are generally restricted to moist, sheltered kloofs that are protected from the prevalent fynbos fires. Afromontane forest are also the highest level of plant communities requiring higher annual rainfalls of 800 mm. This isolated pocket of Afromontane forest – Fernkloof nature reserve, boasts a rich variety of coastal and montane plant species. The fynbos biome is generally  not rich in trees, there are however roughly 30 tree species found in the Afromontane forest – Fernkloof  nature reserve. 

Afromontane forest – Fernkloof nature reserve


1. Alberta magna  Natal Flame Bush, Breekhout, isiQalaba
2. Bauhinia galpinii  Pride-of-de-Kaap,Vlam-van-de-vlakte
3. Brachylaena neriifolia Kloof brachylaena, Water witels
4. Calodendron capense umBaba, Cape chestnut, Wilde kastaling
5. Cassine peragua umNquayi, Bastard saffronwood, Bastersaffraan
6. Celtis africana Witstinkhout, White or Camdeboo stinkwood/umVuvu
7. Chionanthus foveolatus Fine-leaved ironwood, Fynblaarysterhout
8. Curtisia dentata Assegai tree, umGxina
9. Cunonia capensis Rooiels, Butterspoons, umQwashube
10. Dais cotinifolia  Pompon tree, Kannabas, inTozani
11. Dovyalis caffra  umQokolo, Kei-apple, Kei-appel
12. Ekebergia capensis umGwenyaezinja, Cape ash, Essenhout
13. Ficus sur Cape Fig, Wildevyboom, umKhiwane
14. Greyia sutherlandii  Natal bottlebrush, Natalse baakhout
15. Halleria lucida Tree fuchsia, Notsung, umBinza
16. Harpephyllum caffrum  Wild plum, Wildepruim, umGwenya
17. Ilex mitis African holly, Without, umDuma
18. Kiggelaria africana Wild peach, Wildeperske, umKokoko
19. Leucospermum conocarpodendron Grey tree pincushion, Kreupelhout
20. Maytenus acuminata Silky bark, Sybas, umNama
21. Ochna serrulata  Carnival buhs, Fynblaarrooihout
22. Olea capensis Ironwood, Ysterhout
23. Olea europaea ssp africana Wild olive, Swartolienhout, umNquma
24. Olinia ventosa Hard pear, Hardepeer
25. Osyris compressa Cape sumach, Pruimbas
26. Podalyria calyptrata Waterblossom pea, Waterkeurtjie
27. Podocarpus falcatus Outeniqua yellowwood, Geelhout, umGeya
28. Podocarpus latifolius Real yellowwood, Opregte geelhout, umGeya
29. Protea nitida Waboom, isAdlunge
30. Psoralea pinnata Fountain bush, Fonteinbos
31. Rapanea melanophloeos Cape beech, Kaapse boekenhout, isiQwane sehlathi
32. Rhus lancea Karee,
33. Rhus tomentosa Wild currant, Korentebos
34. Sideroxylon inerme White milkwood, Wit melkhout
35. Tarchonanthus camphoratus Camphor bush, Kamferbos, isiDuli selindle
36. Virgilia oroboides Keurboom
37. Virgilia divaricata   
38. Widdrington nodiflora Mountain cedar, Bergsipres


We were not even 2km from the visitors center in the  Reserve and had walked from the Fynbos biome into the Afro-montane forest biome , a unique experience., Gill was doing a guided walk with a F.G.A.S.A assessor, who was testing her to qualify as a F.G.A.S.A guide. We were startled by a swooping Rufous-Chested Sparrow hawk that literally passed our heads less than an arm’s length away as it marauded through the Silky-bark, Rooi Els, and Boekenhout trees in search of prey. We stopped at the Assegaaibos waterfall for freshly brewed coffee and “Mosbolletjie” bread. Mosbolletjie is a local South African bread which is dough leavened with the must of grapes and aniseed.

Afromontane – Wikipedia


Fernkloof Reserve flowers