Location: Chinziwa, Vumba

Image 1

Photo: Bart Wursten
Striga elegans among the grasses

Image 2

Photo: Bart Wursten
Chinziwa seen from Castle Beacon, showing the patchwork of grassland and forest.

Image 3

Photo: Bart Wursten
View towards the summit with Cloudlands Forest on the right

Image 4

Photo: Bart Wursten
Mark and Petra watching the clouds gather over neighbouring Lion Rock

Image 5

Photo: Bart Wursten
Acacia abyssinica near the margins of the forest

Image 6

Photo: Bart Wursten
Protea caffra on the slopes above Cloudlands Forest, one of the few woody species in the grasslands

General Information

Quarter degree square: 1932B1

Country: Zimbabwe

Habitat: Large hill mostly covered with submontane grassland with patches of evergreen forest in depressions on the slopes and Brachystegia woodland on the drier, rocky western slopes.

Altitude range: 1630 - 1810 m

Annual rainfall:

Location (short):

Location (detailed):


Chinziwa is one of the main hills of the Vumba Mts. The eastern slopes and the summit area are largely covered with submontane grassland with some rocky seepage areas near the top. These areas were once dominated by Brachystegia woodland and were cleared by man many centuries ago, most likely to provide firewood for large-scale iron-smelting and to generate grazing for cattle. Nowadays the grassland ecology is maintained by regular fires and well established with many typical exponents of this type of habitat present. In the depressions on the steeper slopes patches of evergreen montane forest are found. The best known example is the Cloudlands forest, which is bisected by the main Vumba road.

The western slopes are much drier, due to the rain-shadow effect, and are still mostly covered in rocky Brachystegia spiciformis woodland. These areas can be seen when one drives up from the lower Vumba towards the Cloudlands, particularly in September the colourful display of new spring foliage are a spectacular sight along this road.

Useful links

View a list of records for Chinziwa, Vumba

View a list of unique taxa (excluding cultivated plants) for Chinziwa, Vumba

View a list of unique taxa (all taxa whether cultivated or not) for Chinziwa, Vumba

View map showing records

View a list of recorders who have visited this location

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-24

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2024). Flora of Zimbabwe: Location details: Chinziwa, Vumba.
https://www.zimbabweflora.co.zw/speciesdata/location-display.php?location_id=37, retrieved 27 February 2024

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