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About Eastern Arc

The Amani [= 'Peace' in Swahili) Botanical Garden is situated on the eastern slopes of the East Usambara Mountains in Tanzania. Its position is lat 5.06 south and long 38.38 east. The station is located about 75 km from the port of Tanga, and 26 km from Muheza.

The area of the garden covers some 350 hectares, of which about a third remains under the original forest, while a large part of the remainder is occupied by permanent plantations of trees and shrubs collected from all parts of the tropics and each having some economic interest.

The garden is bounded in the south by the Sigi River and in the north and east by the Dodwe and Kwamkuyu Rivers, respectively. The Sigi Plantations form a long, narrow strip of land running in a north-east direction and are separated from the Amani Plantations by the Kwamkuyu River. These are also bounded in the south by the Sigi River, in the east by the Sengere River which joins the Sigi in the south-eastern corner. There is no clearly defined or natural boundary in the north.

The garden is surrounded by tropical evergreen rain forest, very rich in species, many of which are endemic. A few genera are discontinuous in their geographical distribution and are only recorded again in West Tropical Africa.

The plantations occupy the crests and slopes of a series of narrow ridges. In general, the slopes are east and south-east facing. The altitudinal range varies from 400m at Sigi to 1125m at Bomole with the result that there is very little level ground in the whole area and the majority of the slopes are excessively steep.

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