Veld rehabilitation on Tanglewood Conservation Area

Aug 11, 2023 | WFA News

Within the proposed Albany Biodiversity Corridor, on the Wilderness Foundation Africa owned Tanglewood Conservation Area property, veld rehabilitation methods are being piloted. This joint initiative between the Foundation and Conservation Landscape Institute, is seeing various rehabilitation methods being piloted on the old farmlands.

One of the methods being tested is soil ponding. Soil ponding is aimed to slow down and collect run off from rain. This helps with water retention in the soil and catches vital topsoil sediments, thus improving soil moisture and improving vegetation growth around the ponds. 

Combined with soil ponding, seed collection and dispersion into degraded areas is also being implemented and tested. In total, 72 000 Azima tetracantha seeds have been collected and dispersed around Tanglewood into degraded areas where bare soil is exposed. Hardy pioneer species such as A. tetracantha are being used as they help with preventing the loss of topsoil, water retention and for these species to act as nurturing plants for other emerging climax species. A. tetracantha was also used due to its resilience to herbivory. 

Additional restoration focus on the property includes brush packing, alien vegetation removal (mostly prickly pear) and silt trapping. In total, over 60ha of land have been restored to date using these three methods.