The Society for Ethnobotany

Fostering research and education on the past, present, and future uses of plants by people.

Economic Botany 2015

Joint Society Conference
Society for Economic Botany and Indigenous Plant Use Forum
June 29th-July 2nd, 2015
Clanwilliam, Western Cape, South Africa

Complete Program Book and the Program Schedule

Global Vision on Indigenous Plants and Economic Botany


SEB 2015 Housing Partner Finder Sign-up Form

SEB 2015 Housing Partner Finder Login

SEB 2015 Ride Share Discussion

SEB 2015 Housing Partner Finder Sign-up Form

SEB 2015 Housing Partner Finder Login

SEB 2015 Ride Share Discussion

We are excited to announce the first joint meeting of the Society for Economic Botany(SEB) and 18th annual Indigenous Plant Use Forum (IPUF)! This SEB 56th annual conference and IPUF 18th conference will be held in beautiful Clanwilliam, South Africa. Clanwilliam is located in the Western Cape at the foot of the majestic Cederberg Mountains, about 230 km from Cape Town. It is the center of the Rooibos tea industry in Cederberg. One of many exciting features of this year’s meeting is that all conference attendees will have the opportunity to visit a rooibos farm and factory to learn about cultivation and processing of this important local species during our mid-week field trip!

Cederberg Mountains around Clanwilliam.

Index of Contents
Preliminary Schedule-At-A-Glance
Conference Venue
Important Dates
Call for Papers, Posters, Workshops and Panels
Product Displays
Registration Fee
Travel Awards
Travel to Clanwilliam
Field Trips
Pre- and Post-Conference Tours from Cape Town
Student Events and Awards
Open Science Network Activities and Events
Local Attractions
Attire and Things to Pack
Visa Requirements
Companions and Children
Disability Accommodations
Conference Refund and Cancellation Policy
Questions and Queries
Helpful Weblinks

The main theme of the conference is “Global Vision on Indigenous Plants and Economic Botany”. Conference activities will include the presentation of oral papers, clustered by thematic focus, dynamic poster sessions (following an engaging 1 minute-1 slide format poster introductions to the audience), workshops, and hot topic panel discussions. The symposia themes will include:

  • Ethnobotany
  • Ethnoveterinary studies
  • Cultivation and propagation for sustainability
  • Commercialization successes (rooibos, etc. -from lab shelf to shop shelf)
  • Ethno-pharmacology and biological activity testing
  • Conservation and sustainability
  • Plant use in arts and crafts
  • Quality control in plant product use
  • Future use of indigenous plants for economic botany

2015 Joint SEB/IPUF Meeting Preliminary Schedule-At-A-Glance

28 June 2015

- Optional: tour of area to visit to bushman paintings (extra)
- Visit to Ramskop Nature Reserve and Clanwilliam Dam (extra)
- Optional Tours (to be announced, extra)
- SEB Council Meeting
- Late afternoon: Registration of IPUF & SEB delegates
- Welcome dinner with local delicacies and entertainment (included)

29 June 2015

- Registration desk
- Welcome and official opening of joint Conference
- Guest speaker
- Plenary invited presentations
- Tea / coffee
- Parallel sessions (volunteered papers on the themes)
- Lunch
- Parallel sessions (volunteered papers on the themes)
- Poster session
- Dinner in the evening and Student Evening (at De Kelder Restaurant)

30 June 2015

- Morning: Plenary invited presentations
- Tea / coffee
- Product displays and presentations
- Lunch
- Parallel sessions (“Teaching Tuesday” workshops and “Hot Topic” panels)
- Poster session
- Dinner in the evening
- Open Science Network evening event

1 July 2015

- Field trip to rooibos farm (cultivation) & rooibos factory (processing)
- Lunch included
- Poster session
- SEB business meeting
- Dinner in the evening

2 July 2015

- Morning: Plenary invited presentations
- Tea / coffee
- Parallel sessions (volunteered papers on the themes)
- Lunch
- Parallel sessions (volunteered papers on the themes)
- Distinguished Economic Botanist Lecture
- Gala Dinner in the evening & awards ceremony

3 July 2015

-  Departure
- Optional tours (to be announced, extra)

About IPUF
We are excited to participate in this joint meeting with the Indigenous Plant Use Forum (IPUF)! This organization was started to “promote the cultural, socio-economic and scientific benefits to be derived from the sustainable use of the southern African flora”. The annual symposia are unique, multicultural and multi-disciplinary events that serve as a meeting point for business people, academics, anthropologists, resource managers, conservationists, policy makers and anyone interested in the sustainable use of the southern African flora.

IPUF Organizing Committee. From left to right: Helen, Margaret, Kimi, Ashton, Ben-Erik. Missing in photo: Gerda and Emmy. All communication with IPUF should be addressed to

Conference Venue
Most conference activities (including presentation of papers, posters and workshops) will be held in the Augsburg Agricultural School Hall and NG Gemeente Clanwilliam Hall in Clanwilliam.

Conference Venue: Augsburg Agricultural School Hall

Conference Venue: NG Gemeente Clanwilliam Hall

Important Dates

December 2014

The call for submission of abstracts for papers (oral presentations), posters, workshops and panels will be released. 

March 1st, 2015

DEADLINE  for abstract submission online (for papers, posters, workshops and panels)

March 20th, 2015

Notification of acceptance or not of posters, papers, workshops, panels

April 1st, 2015

DEADLINE for early registration. Rates go up after this date.

May 31st, 2015

Last day to cancel registration and receive a refund (subject to $50 processing fee)

Call for Papers, Posters, Workshops and Panels
A call for the submission of papers, posters, workshops and panels will be issued in December 2014. More details are coming soon. See the Open Science Network section for more information on “Teaching Tuesday Workshop” proposals.

Product Display
An opportunity will be provided for individuals or companies that have registered for the conference to display and/or sell any product relevant to indigenous plant use / economic botany. Tables (0.9 meter wide; 1.8 meter in length and 72cm high) will be provided upon request on the registration page.

Registration Fee
The registration fee for SEB members, SEB Student/Postdoc members, Non-members and Companions are listed below in USD. The registration fee includes all lunches and dinners, including the final gala banquet, the mid-conference excursion to the rooibos farm and factory, all teas/coffees and a printed program. Expenses for lodging and transportation are NOT included in the registration fee.

Registrant Type

Early Bird (Before April 1st)

Late (After April 1st)

Professional Member



Student or Post-doc Member









** Registration of companions (e.g., spouse, partner, child, friend and etc. accompanying a conference delegate) is only required if they plan on participating in the conference social events, midweek fieldtrip, and meals. Companion registrants do not have access to the scientific program or activities.

Student and Post-doc Travel Awards
We are now accepting submissions for merit-based travel awards from student and post-doc members of SEB. Applications are due March 1st. Details are provided here: Student and Post-doc Travel Award Info

All lunches (Monday to Thursday) and dinners (Sunday evening, Monday to Wednesday and gala dinner) are included in the registration fee. The lunches and teas will be served at the lecture halls. Evening meal venues are to be announced. In addition, there are a few coffee/rooibos tea shops in town as well as area restaurants available at the delegates’ own expense. Although meat is a favored component to South Africa meals, we will cater special dietary needs (vegetarian, vegan, kosher, halaal, allergies, etc.) to the best of ability. This can only be accommodated with advance notice during the registration process.

Conference attendees are responsible for booking and paying their own accommodation. Below is a list of accommodation available in or close to Clanwilliam. Additional descriptions of local lodging is available from the Clanwilliam tourism website. Please book as early as possible! Clanwilliam Lodge is closest to the venue (best choice for those without transport). Blommenberg is also located within easy walking distance from the conference venue. Clanwilliam Dam is a few kilometers away and persons staying there would need own transport (or special transport arrangements). The organizers will arrange for a limited number of minibuses for local transport but strongly advises delegates to hire their own minibuses/cars for transport at Cape Town airport. Budget accommodation is available at the school hostel (next to the venue). For further advice please contact Emmy Reinten (

Lodging is quite affordable at many of the sites. For example, the Clanwilliam Lodge nightly rates are R585 ($52USD) per person sharing and R700 ($63 USD) for a single room in their standard suites. Likewise, Blommenberg  offers standard twin rooms at R440 ($39USD) per person in a shared room or R480 ($43USD) for a single. Additional budget accommodations are also available in and out of town. Several locations also offer larger family style suite accommodations and more info is available on individual websites (see below).

If you are interested in sharing accommodations please visit the Room Share Message Board to find roommates.

The following is a list of accommodations available in town. Participants can walk to the conference venue from the Clanwilliam Lodge or may sign up for optional shuttle service between the lodging and these locations (for an extra fee).

Name and Contact Info

# of Rooms

Additional Info

Clanwilliam Lodge


Hotel. Closest walking distance to the conference venue.



3-star, B& B and Self-catering. Walking distance to conference venue.

Elephant River Guest House


2-star, Guest House

Saint du Barrys


4-star, Guest House

The Rectory Guest House


3-star, Guest House

Ndedema Lodge


4-star, B&B

The Long House


3-star, B&B and Self-Catering

Yellow Aloe


4-star, Guest House. Has accommodations for mobility impaired.

De Vlei Gastehuis



Budget hostel accommodations are also available in-town at the “Augsburg Agricultural Gymnasium".  Ideal for students, and for those wanting to save on accommodation costs, this location requires that guests bring a sleeping bag, cushion and towel. Breakfast is included. The nightly rate is $15 USD. To register for accommodation at this location, please contact IPUF organizer, Dr. Emmy Reintein:

The following is a list of accommodations located outside of town. Participants who choose to stay at these locations will need to arrange for rental of a personal vehicle (from Cape Town). The shuttle service will NOT go to these locations.

Name and Contact Info

# of Rooms

Additional Info

Elandsberg Eco Tourism


3-star, Has accommodations for mobility impaired.

Vrede Oord Guest Farm


Guest Farm located 6 km outside of town.

Klein Boschkloof


4-star, Cottages. Located 9 km outside of town.

Klein Boschkloof


Located 3.5 km outside of town

Cedar Rock Resort


3-star, Self-catering. Clanwilliam Dam

Zandkraal Private Nature Reserve


3-star, 30 min. drive from Clanwilliam

Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve & Wellness Retreat


5-star, luxury resort. 60-km from Clanwilliam (1 ½ hr. drive)

There are several out of town budget and backpacker accommodations and camping accommodations available. Rental or sharing of a personal rental vehicle is necessary as the shuttles will not serve accommodations made outside of town.

Travel to Clanwilliam
The closest airport to Clanwilliam is Cape Town International Airport. Clanwilliam is located about 230 km north of Cape Town. Getting there is very easy – simply take the N7 route through the wheatfields of the Swartland and go along until you reach Clanwilliam. It takes about 3 hours and road work can be expected along the way. For the most flexibility in lodging logistics, delegates are encouraged to reserve a vehicle for rent at Cape Town airport. A check on popular car rental websites projected affordable prices (starting at $130 USD total) for a 6 day rental during the conference period. Please note that South Africans drive on the left-hand side of the road.  Thus, all rental cars are right-hand drive vehicles, the gear shift being operated with the left hand. All distances, speed limits (and speedometers) are marked in kilometres. Mostly cars are manual shift, not automatic. More information can be found HERE.

If you are interested in sharing a vehicle during the conference please visit the Ride Share Message Board. We encourage delegates to book all travel and lodging arrangements early to secure low rates!
If not driving, the following services can be contacted for transportation:

Map: Cape Town to Clanwilliam

Several interactive workshops will be offered. Additional details will be provided following review of workshop submissions.

Field Trips
All conference attendees are invited to attend the mid-week excursion to a local rooibos tea farm and factory on Wednesday, July 1st, 2015. Clanwilliam is the main center of the rooibos tea industry (the most important indigenous crop in the region). Fees for this experience are included in attendee registration.

Additional pre- and post-conference tours are being organized. Please see the list below.

Please check back here occasionally to find updates and more details on a variety of exciting experiences to be offered (at an extra expense).

Pre-conference Field Trips

  • Tour of area to visit to bushman paintings.
  • Visit to Ramskop Nature Reserve and Clanwilliam Dam.

Post-conference Field Trips

  • Regional tours. More details are forthcoming.
  • Pre- and Post-Conference Tours from Cape Town
    Registration for the following tours is available on the conference registration site. Space is limited. Please arrange for your accommodation in Cape Town at one of the two hotels listed below. All tour pick-ups and drop-offs will be made at these two sites.

    Preconference (June 25-27) Thursday, Friday or Saturday
    Post conference (July 3-5), Friday afternoon Sat. and Sunday

    Accommodation options for pre- and post-conference excursions:  

    • The Vineyard Hotel. $160/night
    • Parliament Hotel - Double room is approximately $100 

    Trips include lunch (typically) and transportation to the venue.
    All trips have a minimum of 12 participants and a maximum of 26.

    Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens: $55 (Half Day Excursion) June 25
    The Jewel in the Crown of South Africa’s National Botanical Gardens is nestled into the side of Table Mountain, offering breathtaking views and amazing examples of southern African flora. This half day excusrios to the gardens offer spectacular fynbos gardens with specimens of  Protea, Restios, and Leucodendrons. There are outdoor and indoor conservatory gardens filled with succulents native to the area as well as medicinal plant gardens, cycad gardens and rolling lawns.

    Table Mountain:  (Canceled - Full Day - $80 (suggest they sign up for the half-day table mountain option)) (Half Day- $55) Excursion June 25
    One of the New Wonders of the World, Table Mountain is the iconic symbol of Cape Town, particularly beautiful after a rain when it produces spontaneous waterfalls. It is said that there are 365 ways to hike to the top, some more vigorous than others. We have arranged to have an experienced botanist accompany you to the top at your pace for a full day excursion. For those who prefer a less strenuous visit to experience the breathtaking views from the top, you can take the cable car to the top, have a walk, meet the dussies and have a lunch at the café  a half day event).

    Cape Point:  $70 (Full Day Excursion) July 4
    The nature reserve at the tip of the peninsula jutting out of the southwestern corner of the African continent is a mix of rocky cliffs, beaches, fynbos and the occasional baboon. A guide will tour you to the top of the rocky outcropping or you can ride the funicular up. Either way you will be exposed to coastal fynbos plants and the rich maritime history of the cape. We will stop on the way to see a colony of African penguins in Seapoint and pehaphs stop to look at some African sculptures if time permits.

    Canceled - West Coast Day Trip to Harold Porter Botanical Garden and Cape Agulhas: (suggest to them to choose the Cape Point - Full Day Excursion instead (also on the July 4th date)) was $100 (Full Day Excursion) July 4
    As you travel up the West Coast, we will traverse Sir Lowry’s Pass to the Overburg agricultural region where a great deal of South Africa’s fruit is produced. Set between the mountains and the sea, Harold Porter Botanical Gardens boast examples of coastal and marshland fynbos within the Kogelberg Biosphere reserve. Our tour will continue to Cape Agullus the southernmost point of the African continent where the Atlantic and Indian oceans meet.
    Township Tour:   $66 ( Half Day Excursion) July 3
    Townships are where the vast majority of South Africans live. This half day experience will start with a tour of District Six, once home to thousands of people of various cultures, and visit the oldest mosque in S.A. We will tour Langa, the oldest formal black township in Cape Town, and see the local market, an art & crafts centre. We will meet a traditional healer. Experience the warm hospitality of a local B&B. We visit a crèche offering fun, and a safe haven for the local children. We also visit some other nearby townships Bonteheuwel, Nyanga, Crossroads, Khayelitsha, and Gugulethu where we see the Gugulethu Seven Memorial and the Amy Biehl Memorial.

    Canceled - Winelands Tour:(Unfortunately, there isn’t really an alternative trip that day), was $120 (Full day Excursion) July 5
    We begin our tour in Paarl at the Anura Wine Estate for a cellar tour and a cheese and wine tasting. We then make our way to picturesque Franschhoek with a photo stop at the Groot Drakenstein Prison where Nelson Mandela was released in February 1990. The village of Franschhoek nestled amongst the mountains, can easily be mistaken as being in Switzerland. Home to some magnificent wine estates, you will have time to walk through the village and soak up the atmosphere of rural sophistication. After lunch the tour continues over the Hells Hoogte Mountain Pass to Stellenbosch. The backdrop of the Hottentots Holland Mountains, the white gabled Cape Dutch homesteads and the oak lined streets and lanes all blend in to give this place a charm that will not be forgotten.

    Safari at Aquila Game Reserve: $260 (Overnight Excursion) July 4-5
    The overnight safari near to Cape Town boasts a 2 – 3 hour game drive with specialist. Awaiting your return is a traditional African meal, sparkling, an invitation to cool-off in a natural rock pool, and luxury accommodation. Aquila host South Africa’s big 5 wildlife legends including: elephant, lion, buffalo, leopard and rhino. For an overnight Safari our transfer pick up is between 09:00 – 10:00. Transport leave the reserve the next day at 12:00. Both pick up and drop off is at the two hotels listed already on the site.

    Guided birdwatching tours: can be arranged before or after the conference. Contact Ethan Kistler by email at for inquiries and booking.

Student Events and Awards
The SEB Student Council will host a student evening at De Kelder Restaurant on Monday, June 29th, 2015. This event is free of charge and all students are encouraged to attend this fun networking event! SEB has an active and engaged student membership! Some activities include nominating and selecting faculty mentors for the Charles B. Heiser, Jr. Mentor Award and participation in the SEB Student Blog and SEB Student Facebook page. For questions on how to get more involved in SEB student activities, email the Student Representative at:

SEB student members are also eligible for several awards. The Richard Evan Schultes Award application is typically due in March and the winner of this research funding award is announced at the meeting. Students presenting posters at the annual meeting are eligible for the Julia F. Morton Award for the best student poster. Students presenting an oral paper at the annual meeting are eligible for the Edmund H. Fulling Award for best oral presentation by a student. To be considered for either of these presentation awards, you need to select the box indicating that you wish to be considered during online registration.

Open Science Network Activities and Events
Teaching Tuesday Educational Workshops (Tuesday, June 30th) 
(organized and hosted by the Open Science Network
SEB is continuing a tradition of providing Teaching Workshops at the 2015 conference in South Africa. As in the past, these optional workshops will provide a hands-on activity useful to teaching in ethnobiology. In the past, participants have received opportunities to learn more about creating fibers from plants, Caribbean medicinal teas and bush baths, introduction to flintknapping, the biogeography of the family meal, training in ethnoecology and the lists goes on. We are currently looking for possible workshops to host at the 2015 conference proceedings. Through this call, we invite you to propose a workshop. Workshops must be hands-on and have a tangible measurable outcome. All workshops come with a budget of $25. Budgets greater than this amount will be considered with ample justification.

If you are interested, please send an email to Sunshine Brosi ( with the following details by February 1st, 2015.

  • The title of your presentation and detailed summary of your specific objectives, activities, and measurable outcomes of participation;
  • A budget;
  • The requested amount of time to complete the activity; and
  • The number of people who may take the workshop.

Open Science Network Reception (Tuesday, June 30th) 
Cost $20 (Includes membership in OSN) 
Come join the Open Science Network (OSN) in an evening ‘active’ reception and networking event as we share ethnobiological knowledge with each other. OSN was originally an NSF-funded network of ethnobiologists, seeking to create a virtual and in-person network of scientists willing to share curricula, ideas, research, grant writing and more! In 2013, OSN spun off into its own organization and we hope to continue positively influencing the careers of ethnobiologists. We encourage all attendees to plan on bringing an ethnobiologically-focused item that can be shared with others. Examples could include food, drink, handmade items, or even a small ethnobiologically-focused brochure or flier. A registration link to the event will be available soon. We hope to see you there!

Group Photo of OSN participants at the 2010 Society for Economic Botany meeting in Xalapa, Mexico.

Local Attractions
Clanwilliam has a variety of activities and attractions to offer, including: agritourism, arts & crafts, birding, bouldering, fauna & flora, health & wellness, guided tours & trips, hiking trails, hunting, mountain biking, river rafting, rock art, 4x4 routes and quad biking.  Other things to do around Clanwilliam include a visit to the Old Gaol Museum, Rooibos visit and tastings, art gallery, visits to the Cederberg Wilderness area, rock art and more. A TV documentary on Clanwilliam can be accessed HERE.

More information on travel and tourism in the whole Western Cape, including the Swartland, Cederberg, Penninsula, Bergrivier and Namaqua West Coast, is available on the Cape West Coast site. Information of the top 10 natural attractions in the Western Cape is available HERE.

Local Attractions: Ramskop Nature Reserve

Clanwilliam information office.

Attire and Things to Pack
The elevation of Clanwilliam is 300 ft (100 m) and is included in part of the winter rainfall area in South Africa, but is classified as semi-desert. Being in the southern hemisphere, June & July are winter months. Winter days are often dry, sunny and mild to warm. Average temperatures are 16°C (60°F) during the day and 8°C (46°F) at night, but it is usually very cold when the sun sets in the Cederberg region. [bring a warm jacket and sweater; gloves and a scarf]. As daytime temperatures range from cool to quite warm, bring along a short sleeved top.  Attire for the conference is casual and delegates are encouraged to bring appropriate attire for the optional field trips (boots, hiking stick, etc.).

Cederberg is a malaria-free region with no particular health concerns. The tap water is drinkable. This is a provincial hospital in Clanwilliam in case you need medical attention. A list of doctors, dentists, etc will be supplied at registration. Regarding Ebola, South Africa is Ebola-free. The distance between Clanwilliam, South Africa and Sierra Leone is 5,671miles [9,127 km]; this translates to a driving time of 5 days 6 hours.  Map:

Clanwilliam is a small town with apart from general stores only a few unique shops. (rooibos tea, handcrafted shoes, local products). Cape Town is better known for shopping experiences.

Clanwilliam is a township located in the countryside and is generally very safe. As in all parts of the world, it is recommended that you are careful with valuable belongings, such as electronics, money, and travel documents.

Visa Requirements
U.S. citizens (U.S. passport holders) visiting the Republic of South Africa for ninety (90) days or less for tourism / business purposes do not need visas. Visit the South Africa Consular website for more information. Attendees from other countries should check here to view the list of Visa Exempt Countries for entry to South Africa.  Attendees requiring a Visa should secure them early. If you require a letter of invitation for your visa application, please contact Dr. Cassandra Quave at .

Companions and Children
Companions and children accompanying conference delegates are welcome to register in the “Companion” registration category in order to participate in the conference social events and meals. Companion registrants do not have access to the scientific program or activities. Additional details concerning childcare options are forthcoming.

Delegates traveling with children to South Africa from abroad should be aware that in addition to a valid passport, the South African government also requires an unabridged birth certificate. Specifically, with effect from 1 June 2015, parents travelling with children into or out of South Africa may be asked to show the child’s full birth certificate, and where only one parent is accompanying, proof of parental or legal authority to travel with the child. More information on these new travel rules is available at the South African Consular website.

Disability Accommodations
Some of the lodging locations have accommodations for the mobility impaired. See the Lodging section for more info.

Conference Refund and Cancellation Policy

Requests for registration fee refunds will be honored if received in writing before May 31st, 2015 to:

Society for Economic Botany, Conference Registration
PO Box 299
St. Louis, MO 63166
or e-mailed to:

Registration fee refunds will be subject to a $50 processing fee. Full fee refunds will be granted for Field Trips and Workshops if they exceed maximum enrollment, do not meet minimum enrollment, or are cancelled for any reason. ALL refunds will be issued AFTER the conference.

Questions or Queries?
Please contact Dr. Emmy Reinten:

Helpful Weblinks