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Taking a closer look.
A group photo from a recent outing.
Photo: E Gudde
Leevi Nanyeni of the NBRI talking about an exchange visit to the USA, during a talk in 2022.
Photo: Alice Jarvis

Our story - 25 years of BotSoc

Brief history of the Botanical Society of Namibia

On 26 March 1996, 14 people met to launch the Friends of the Botanic Gardens (FOB), with eight apologies. These were representatives of Earthlife Namibia, Greenspace and the Botanic Garden. The focus was on planting indigenous and water-wise gardens and support for the Botanic Garden.

Timeline Events
29 June 1996 An interim committee of three was established to:
  • Draft the aims and objectives of the Society
  • Draft a short Constitution
  • Investigate legislation pertaining to the propagation of seedlings at the National Botanical Research Institute
  • Organise a workshop on plant propagation.
24 April 1997 Inaugural Meeting of the Botanical Society of Namibia.
13 May 1997 1st Council meeting held. Magda Robinson elected Chair & Treasurer.
28 May 1998 First volunteer guides for the Botanic Garden (BG).
5 August 1998 The first Annual General Meeting was held.
The Society had 40 members. Forestry agreed to give 20 trees for planting at schools.
14 September 1998 Stephanie Engelbrecht took over as Chairperson.
21 September 2000 Annual General Meeting, chaired by Barbara Curtis.
2001 Society considers becoming a subgroup of Wildlife Society.
Municipality requested assistance in clearing invasive aliens from Hofmeyr Walk.
As people don't like serving on a committee, the term Core of Active Plant People (CAPP) was coined by Barb Curtis.
The Society formally affiliated with the Botanical Society of South Africa.
Competition launched among members for a society logo.
2002 Barb Curtis elected Chairperson.
The Society became involved in an Aliens Project.
A design by Christine Marais was officially chosen as the logo of the Society.
Training for BG guides held.
2003 The first Open Day, showcasing the NBRI and selling plants propagated in the nursery, was held.
2004 Luise Hoffmann took over as Chairperson.
Monthly talks were held at the NBRI.
2006 Diana Thompson elected Chairperson.
Permission was granted by the Ministry to open the Botanic Garden once a month over a weekend.
2007 First Tree Awards (3) were handed over to those who had gone out of their way to preserve indigenous trees. Now an annual project. Certificates of Recognition were added at a later stage.
2008 Memorandum of Agreement was signed with NEWS.
2017 Introduction of biocontrol agents for 3 species of cacti by Dr Iain Paterson.
Memorandum of Agreement was signed with the Namibia Scientific Society.
2018 Ellen Gudde elected Chairperson.
2020 A campaign was started to raise awareness of other invasive alien species.