Erica ferrea is one of the Cape plant species threatened by extinction from human encroaching on its habitat. It is said to be extinct on Table Mountain, but still found in a few other places (www.sanparks.org; Wikimedia).
Urban development, farming practices that provide food for our burgeoning numbers, introduction of alien vegetation for various reasons (or by accident) all contribute to the threatening of species survival. Biodiversity is very much needed by people for survival too! The plant in picture is grown at Kirstenbosch where the plight of such plants is publicised in order to stop or at least retard the destructive processes through enlisting support from caring people.
Humanity can solve some of the problems it creates. A workable plan is always preceded by understanding and commitment. The time all of this takes may reduce the probability of success. Interesting how busy we are contributing to the problem while we are economically active and how caring we become in old age when only other old people have time to listen to such stories! Maybe we just get old too soon and wise too late.
E. ferrea is a delightful flowering plant covered in bright pink globular flowers, growing singly on reddish stalks. The flower has a small opening surrounded by four tiny pink or white corolla lobes. Towards the back of the little sphere there are dark tips of the protruding calyx that “holds the ball”. The leaves are oblong and slightly angular where the edges are rolled under. Leaf tips are pointed and slightly yellow.