Spekboom: climate saviour or just another succulent?

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Spekboom: climate saviour or just another succulent?

The indigenous plant has been hailed as the planet’s saviour. But is it? Let’s separate fact from fiction

Pieter Botha

The indigenous spekboom has become an unlikely social media star thanks to the #spekboomchallenge to “do your part to fight climate change”.

The succulent is an easy plant to grow – just pick a cutting, put it in the ground and add some water – but is it really the answer to our carbon troubles? 

Big plans are underway for the spekboom in SA, with city councils, businesses, schools and NGOs all joining the fray. The City of Cape Town wants to plant 100,000 spekboom, a wine farm in the Little Karoo hopes to grow a million of the plants, and outside Stellenbosch a giant spekboom labyrinth is being laid out in the fynbos realm...

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