Planting Oxygen for Arbor Week
The famous Spekboom, also known locally as the Elephant's Bush (because Ellies love their moisture-filled leaves) is a true South African Wonder Plant.
This Arbor week, our volunteers have been busy planting an oxygen garden - yes you read correctly - a real-life oxygen garden. To be specific, our oxygen garden consists of cuttings from the very humble and way under-rated Spekboom.
Why the hype?
Well first things first, it has edible leaves, jam-packed with Vitamin C. Some high-end restaurants in the Mother City (Cape Town) has even included this unique delicatessen to their menus. It's a very resilient shrub, meaning they're easy to plant and they have a means of thriving in water-scarce regions, offering solace and some splashes of green in often barren landscapes. Environmentalists also claim that this wonder plant can rehabilitate and prohibit erosion when planted... already three amazing reasons to add this to your 'must-plant list'.
So just when you started thinking 'wow, this plant is pretty amazing', we can assure you - it gets way better!
It is an answer (perhaps not the only answer) but an answer to fighting climate change!
This carbon-eating shrub can capture 4 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year per hectare planted. This amazing trait makes this magician-of-plant more effective at carbon dioxide management than the Amazon Forest. Though every effort must go toward protecting the Amazon Forest, being in the news a lot recently for large scale burns and deforestation, we would be naive to rely solely on it as the Earths lungs.
The low-key looking bush with its round, succulent leaves, can reach an age of up to 200 years, is especially good at photosynthesis (turning sunlight into plant food), which produces a byproduct our lives depend on: OXYGEN.
So let's stand back and reflect.
Spekboom is edible, literally catches Carbon Dioxide, works on Solar power to create Oxygen, restores the soil it is planted in AND doesn't need any other resource than space and natural rainfall...
Spekboom + Sunlight = Oxygen
Spekboom + Carbon Dioxide = Oxygen
Spekboom + Erosion = No Erosion
Spekboom = Food supply
Thank you to our hard-working vollies for their hard work in helping us fight climate change!