Trees for Tourism
The Trees for Tourism rehabilitation site on the Klein River Cheese Farm, 7 km outside the village of Stanford, is a dedicated project to restore one of the few remaining riparian forests on the Klein River. The forest is approximately 8 ha in extent and includes a wooded kloof on its southern boundary.
Over the years the forest has been degraded by settlers planting blackwoods, poplars and oak for harvesting. There are areas of original forest which remain and include a swathe of milkwoods along the eastern boundary which act as a good fire barrier.
Berg river yellowwoods are naturally present in the forest. The forest is bordered by fynbos, renosterbos and agricultural grazing on the opposite bank of the river which forms its one boundary.
The Baleta family have, since settling here in 2015, declared it their lifetime legacy to restore the forest and kloof. Working for Water were initially involved in 2015 with the removal of all the exotic blackwoods.
All the thirsty Eucalyptus were also removed to increase the flow of the river. Because of their natural occurrence and fire retardant properties milkwoods were planted to replace felled blackwoods.
The natural regeneration of Kiggelaria, Gymnosporia, Sideroxylon and Olea Africana as pioneer species has been encouraging. The reforestation project will involve planting indigenous species under the canopy of remaining exotics until they have established themselves and more of the exotics can be removed.
The sensitive nature of the riverine banks and the unpredictability of the rain make this the most feasible manner of rehabilitation to minimize erosion.
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