Biodiversity Conservation

Sustainable Natural Resource Management

Current projects

Adaptive Capacity and Experiential Learning in the Bokkeveld

This project includes a host of capacity development activities relating to conservation. The project offers a range of training courses, for adults and learners, focusing on computer training, business training, conservation and special plants

This project also funds the continuation of the Eco Fellowship programme, and supports their capacity development and career pathway support. Indigo offers 3 intern positions as part of this programme. This project is supported by the National Lotteries Commission and will come to an end in June 2020.

Demographic Plant Monitoring in Nieuwoudtville

With the Support of the Custodians of Rare and Endangered Wildflowers (CREW), Indigo is continuing the Summer and Winter Schools in Nieuwoudtville. This also includes the monthly monitoring of rare and threatened plant species. The phenological monitoring of the Euryops virgatus and Bulbinella latifolia var doleritica that has been in its 9th year already and is monitored with the support of CREW staff members and interns. This project is supported by SANBI.

Past projects

Wild Olive Training Centre

Indigo will open the doors of a new local training centre this year: the Wild Olive training will offer training and learning activities for young and mature learners in Nieuwoudtville. Activities will include a range of training courses, interactive field trips and an annual local conference.

Eco Fellow Programme

The Eco Fellowship programme was launched in January 2014. It offers 8 Eco Fellows the opportunity to engage in interactive learning activities throughout the school year. Monthly training modules are offered to explore special plants, the use of GPS and GIS, communication skills and other topics. Every Wednesday, the Eco Fellows gather in the Indigo workshop space and have the opportunity to work on specific school projects using computers, accessing the internet with mentoring support from Indigo staff. This project is supported by the Hans Hoheisen Foundation.

Summer and Winter School in Nieuwoudtville

For more than a decade Indigo is facilitating one week long summer and winter school in the first week of the school holidays. These activities allow learners to explore a range of different activities – all exploring how to engage with nature, biodiversity and conservation.

The Summer and Winter School are supported by the Hantam National Botanical Garden, the Environmental Monitoring Group and Avontuur Sustainable Agriculture.

Phenological Monitoring

For the past 5 years we have been doing phenological monitoring of two threatened plant species in the Nieuwoudtville area: Euryops virgatus and Bulbinella latifolia var doleritica. The monitoring takes place once per year in the flowering season (September) and includes measurements of identified Euyops plants, photo graphs and fixed point photography. This project is implemented in collaboration with CREW / SANBI.

Sustainable Harvesting of Wild Rooibos


Indigo has been working closely with small scale rooibos tea farmers to explore ways of sustainable harvesting of Wild Rooibos. We have compiled this information as a manual available in English and Afrikaans.

Rooibos Ecology

Indigo has been involved in Mapping different ecotypes of Aspalathus linearis (Rooibos) in the Cedarberg and Bokkeveld area. Further research is exploring the ecology and its threatened plants in the ecosystems associated with Wild Rooibos.

CREW Nieuwoudtville

Indigo houses the Nieuwoudtville CREW group and organises local events such as Plant Monitoring Day, The Nieuwoudtville Summer and Winter School and biodiversity monitoring activities in collaboration with SANBI / CREW.

Monitoring of Rare Species


Indigo monitors various threatened and rare plants in the Nieuwoudtville area. We work with farmers and scientists to conserve the unique local biodiversity.

Indigo also convenes the Nieuwoudtville Biodiversity Support Group – a local stakeholder group wanting to protect local biodiversity.

Indigo is also working in close partnership with SANBI and the new Hantam National Botanical Garden – situated just 3 km South of Nieuwoudtville.

Wupperthal Small Grant Project

Indigo has been working in partnership with the Environmental Monitoring Group and the Wupperthal community to find collaborative ways to curb land erosion and degradation in innovative ways.

Organic Product and Certification Support

Indigo has been supporting the Heiveld and Wupperthal tea producers to comply with organic certification. This included advice and participatory mapping of all the rooibos tea lands for the farmers.

Management of Alien Grasses

Alien invasive grasses are increasingly threatening the rare and special plants. In the Nieuwoudtville Wild Flower Reserve Indigo is currently undertaking trials to establish best management for wild oat infested Dolerite Renosterveld.

This project is funded by CEPF and is implemented with support of Simon Todd (UCT) and Eugene Marinus (SANBI).

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