Cape Beech

Rapanea melanophloeos

Even though its leaves look quite tough, bushbuck love them and the adult trees in our pilot area don’t seem to have been able to produce any surviving youngsters. We’re planting more, as the purple fruits are a hit with birds, vervet monkeys and bushpig, and the flowers support bees and flies. (Flies need trees too!)

The wood from these trees is also quite special: pinkish, with a grain fine enough to make violins from (source: Elsa Pooley). The tree also treats heart, stomach and respiratory complaints. But we’d like our trees to stay intact for at least the next century or so before such transformations!


It’s one of the easiest climate crisis mitigation methods we know. Trees absorb and sequester carbon – and indigenous forest is far better at carbon capture than degraded lands or plantations. Trees also provide habitat to incredible living creatures, help purify the air, protect soil from erosion, and protect our water catchments. Never mind offering local residents a rejuvenating space to relax and exercise in.

Yes. They are all species that occur within the reserve itself, or the immediate area surrounding it, including the corridors through the plantations. Trees are grown from seed and cuttings sourced from the area, or purchased from local nurseries or organisations as our nursery grows.

In the Ferncliffe Nature Reserve, in a corridor of indigenous trees, or in an area designated for rehabilitation in conjunction with a landowner. We have full permission to plant from the municipal authorities or relevant landowners.

Once a year for two years. After this period, you can sign up for additional news of your tree for a small annual fee. Our website’s blog will have the latest news, and you can follow us on social media for all the latest progress and sightings.

Physical certificates feature hand-drawn and painted artwork by Connor Cullinan, and are printed on quality A4 paper. Digital certificates look the same as the paper versions, but are issued as PDFs via email. If you’d like to print them yourself, we recommend choosing a matt paper of 250 gsm. Both are designed to be beautiful..

Connor Cullinan is a fine artist with many solo and group shows to his name. He is producing a series of original prints to help Ferncliffe raise funds for its restoration work. The images are based on fauna and flora that can be found in the forest and on its fringes. The images are open editions*, and are signed and dated. The first two prints in the ongoing series are of a porcupine and a forest weaver, and they are produced at Black River Studio in Cape Town, South Africa.

*An open edition print means an unlimited number of prints of the same artwork is sold.

If your order is urgent, please contact us first to see if we’ll be able to deliver on time. We’re a very small team and this system is not automated.

Digital certificates will be sent electronically via email, within three business days, Monday to Friday (excluding RSA public holidays).

Postage of print orders is by courier. We post once a week, however, so please expect the order to take longer than a standard delivery — or contact us to make a plan.

NOTE: 2022-2023 holiday closures: We’ll start processing digital tree certificates again from 27 December 2022.  Print certificates can be posted from 3 January to  noon 4 January 2023, and then there will be a break until 17 January 2023 due to various holiday closures. Thanks for your understanding.


Prints and certificates will be packaged flat, sandwiched between stiff cardboard.

As soon as conditions are right. Generally this means spring and summer, as this is the rainy season and the young trees will need water at first. So your tree may have to wait its turn for a few months before ‘release’ into the wild!

Yes. We are registered as a Public Benefit Organisation, number 93 007 2645, and can issue Section 18A tax certificates on request.



Plant a tree certificate