Native Flora & Fauna

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Sharing our knowledge: seed banking and other forms of ex situ plant conservation to safeguard our future 

16-08-2022 15:50

Everyone working to conserve native plants who needs to study or store them outside their natural habitats now has access to up-to-date research and evidence-based guidelines in the new edition of ‘Plant Germplasm Conservation in Australia’.

The Australian Network for Plant Conservation and the Australian Seed Bank Partnership joined forces with the restoration and agriculture sectors, botanic gardens, CSIRO and universities to produce the publication, which was generously funded by The Ian Potter Foundation.

Australia is home to more than 23 000 plant species, many of which occur nowhere else. Our national plant treasures face a multitude of threats and more than 10% of Australian plant species are considered threatened. Australia’s ex situ (off site) conservation collections provide plant material and knowledge so we can better understand, protect and restore populations and landscapes.

The plant material – known as germplasm – is stored as seeds in conservation seed banks, as nursery and ‘living plant’ collections in botanic gardens, as tiny shoots grown in tissue culture, as fern spores and fungal filaments, and even as cryo-stored seeds or plant parts ready to be reinvigorated many years after storage.

A National Landcare Conference 2022 poster by the Australian Network for Plant Conservation.



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