Walter Sisulu National Botanical Garden

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South Africa - Gauteng - Johannesburg

Institution Code: NBGW

International Agenda Registration: Yes

BGCI Member: Yes

About the Walter Sisulu National Botanical Garden

Parastatal organisation, the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) under the national Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA)

Named after the late Iconic Apartheid Struggle Hero Walter Sisulu Against the backdrop of the magnificent Witpoortjie waterfall, this Garden (previously called the Witwatersrand National Botanical Garden) covers almost 300 hectares and consists of both landscaped and natural veld areas. The history of the Garden shows that it was founded in 1982, but has been a popular venue for outings since the 1800's.

The natural vegetation of the area is known as the "Gold Reef Mountain Bushveld" and consists of a mosaic of grassland and savanna, with forest communities in kloofs and along streams. A list of naturally occuring trees is available.The variety of habitats accommodates over 600 naturally occurring plant species. View the seasonal highlights.

Main Address:
Walter Sisulu National Botanical Garden
Physical: End of Malcom Road, Poortview, Roodepoort, 1724
Postal: PO Box 2194, Wilro Park
Gauteng 1731 South Africa

Telephone: +27 (0) 86 100 1278
Fax: +27 (0)11 958 1752
Primary Email:

Staff Details

  • Director's Name: Christopher Willis
    Curator's Name: Ms Xolelwa Mokoena
    Plant Records Officer's Name: Mrs Alice Aubrey
  • Total Staff:
    Horticultural Staff Number: 3
    Educational Staff Number: 2
    Research Staff Number: 1
    Administration Staff Number: 4

About the Garden

  • Institution Type: Botanic Garden
  • Status
  • Status: Private: No
    Status: State: Yes
    Status: Educational: Yes
    Status: Municipal: No
    Status: Satellite: No
    Status: Trust: No
  • Date founded: 1982
  • Physical Data
  • Natural Vegetation Area: Yes
    Natural vegetation area: Size: 288 Hectares
  • Landscaped Area: Yes
    Landscaped Area: Size: 20 Hectares
  • Total Area: 308 Hectares
    Latitude: -26.0873
    Longitude: 27.8446
    Annual Rainfall: 750 mm
    Altitude: 0.00 Metres

Features and Facilities

  • Herbarium: Yes
    Herbarium: Number of Specimens: 300
    Arboretum: Yes
    Arboretum Size: 1
  • Micropropagation/ Tissue Culture Facilities: No
    Seed Bank: No
    Published Plant Catalogue: No
    Computer Plant Record System: Yes
  • Open to public: Yes
    Friends society: Yes
    Retail Outlet: Shop: No
    Retail Outlet: Plant Sales: Yes
    Disabled access: Yes
  • Number of Visitors: 240000

Plant Collections

  • Special Collections:Over 90% of the garden is made up of natural vegetation of Gold Reef Mountain Bushveld which is comprised of Protea caffra wooded grassland slopes with, Acacia caffra, Cussonia paniculata subsp. sinuata, and rocky ridges with Englerophytum magalismontanum, and Ancylobotrys.

    Plant Groups in the collections: Agapanthus; Huernia; Haworthia; Plectranthus; Orbea; Aloe; Adromischus; Conophytum;

    Flagship Threatend taxa: Orbea elegans
  • Invasive Species Monitoring: No
    Invasive Species Policy: No
    ABS Policy: Yes
    Plant Collection Policy: Yes

Conservation Programmes

  • Conservation Programme: Yes
    Medicinal Plant Programme: Yes
    Ex Situ Conservation Programme: Yes
    Reintroduction Programme: No

Research Programmes

  • Biotechnology: No
    Plant Breeding: Yes
    Conservation - Biology: No
    Conservation - Genetics: No
    Data Management Systems and Information Technology: No
    Ecology: No
    Ecosystem Conservation: Yes
    Education: Yes
    Ethnobotany: Yes
    Exploration: Yes
    Floristics: No
    Horticulture: Yes
    Invasive Species Biology and Control: No
    Molecular Genetics: No
    Pollination Biology: No
    Restoration Ecology: No
    Seed/Spore Biology: No
    Systematics and Taxonomy: Yes
    Sustainability: No
    Pharmacology: No
    Agriculture: No
    Land Restoration: No
    Urban Environments: No

Education Programmes

  • Visitor/Education Centre: Yes
    Education Signs in Garden: Yes
    Public Lectures/Talks: Yes
    Education Booklets/Leaflets: Yes
    Guided Tours: Yes
    Permanent Public Displays: Yes
    Special Exhibitions: Yes
    Courses for School Children: Yes
    Courses for University/College Students: No
    Courses for General Public: Yes
    Education Programme: Yes