Kouga Honeybush-tea

Scientific Name
Cyclopia intermedia E.Mey.
Higher Classification
Cyclopia aurea Fourc., Cyclopia brachypoda Benth. var. intermedia (E.Mey.) Hofmeyr & E.Phillips, Cyclopia subternata Hofmeyr & E.Phillips, Cyclopia vogelii Harv., Cyclopia vogelii Harv. var. intermedia (E.Mey.) Harv.
Common Names
Bergtee (a), Kouga Honeybush-tea (e), Kougabergtee (a)
National Status
Status and Criteria
Least Concern
Assessment Date
A.L. Schutte-Vlok & D. Raimondo
This is the most widespread of species in the genus Cyclopia. Harvesting of wild subpopulations to supply the honey bush tea industry is widespread. Overharvesting is causing declines to subpopulations particularly in the Langkloof, Tsitsikamma and Kouga mountain ranges. Proper regulation and management is needed to ensure sustainable harvesting within this trade.
South African endemic
Provincial distribution
Eastern Cape, Western Cape
Witteberg Mountains near Touwsrivier to the Van Stadens Mountains near Port Elizabeth.
Habitat and Ecology
Major system
Major habitats
Rocky, loamy, sandy soil, 500-1 700 m.
Declining due to overharvesting for the honey bush tea industry. This species is difficult to propagate and the majority of the tea trade is supplied by wild harvested product. Illegal harvesting (poaching) of leaves and branches for tea has been reported in many areas. Populations have been reported to be declining particularly in the Langkloof, Tsitsikamma and Kouga mountain ranges.

The population is declining due to overharvesting. The extent of decline is currently unknown but it is unlikely to be greater than 10%.

Population trend
Assessment History
Taxon assessed
Status and Criteria
Citation/Red List version
Cyclopia intermedia E.Mey.Least Concern Raimondo et al. (2009)

Goldblatt, P. and Manning, J.C. 2000. Cape Plants: A conspectus of the Cape Flora of South Africa. Strelitzia 9. National Botanical Institute, Cape Town.

Raimondo, D., von Staden, L., Foden, W., Victor, J.E., Helme, N.A., Turner, R.C., Kamundi, D.A. and Manyama, P.A. 2009. Red List of South African Plants. Strelitzia 25. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria.

Schutte, A.L. 1997. Systematics of the genus Cyclopia Vent. (Fabaceae, Podalyrieae). Edinburgh Journal of Botany 54(2):125-170.

Vlok, J. and Schutte-Vlok, A.L. 2010. Plants of the Klein Karoo. Umdaus Press, Hatfield.

Schutte-Vlok, A.L. & Raimondo, D. 2016. Cyclopia intermedia E.Mey. National Assessment: Red List of South African Plants version 2020.1. Accessed on 2022/05/17

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Distribution map

© D. Turner

© D. Turner

© J.H. Vlok/A.L. Schutte-Vlok

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