Spekboom plants to form Great Labyrinth of Africa

Posted by Elise Kirsten on 17 January 2020

Work on an ambitious project to create the largest labyrinth in Africa out of spekboom hedges will continue tomorrow with the help of volunteers in Stellenbosch, in the Western Cape.

Known as the Great Labyrinth of Africa, the 13 circuit labyrinth will have the same dimensions as the base of one of the Pyramids of Giza in Egypt – 230m x 230m – and will have the same design as that of the Chartres Cathedral labyrinth in France.

To help get the plants, which have been growing in a nursery, into the ground, The Great Labyrinth Project has put an appeal out for volunteers to help with the planting. People who are keen to roll up their sleeves and be part of the project can help between 9am and 3pm on any Saturday. The first of these volunteer days takes place on 18 January.

Spekboom plants being grown for planting in Great Labyrinth of Africa. Image credit: Great Labyrinth of Africa.

‘We have 120,000 spekboom trees to plant so we need all the help we can get. We also need folks to help us water and feed our trees. We’re hosting volunteer days every Saturday from 9am to 3pm, you can work for as long as you like. All you need to do is let us know when you’d like to roll up your shirt sleeves and get involved. In January we’re planting the perimeter trees and outer circle, and we’ll start planting the labyrinth inner pathways in Feb. Your help will be greatly appreciated,’ the project posted on its Facebook Page.

Speaking about the choice of spekboom, project manager and labyrinth designer Terry De Fries  ‘The labyrinth being made of this particular tree will help play a role in the neutralising of the carbon footprint.’

The plant is known for its ability to effectively sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere (one hectare of spekboom can remove between four and ten tonnes of carbon per annum.)

‘If we don’t regress carbon emissions by 2025, we’ll go past the tipping point and all of humanity will face extinction,’ said project Peter Shrimpton

Project partners and sponsors include the Head Of Strategy and innovation at Pam Golding Properties and the Chief Executive at Stellenbosch Bridge Smart City.

Those that are interested in offering help have been asked to message Great Labyrinth of Africa with your email address and they’ll send directions and guidelines.

For more information contact: [email protected] wonderplant.co.za

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