News 2018-09-20T21:54:13+00:00

Seed Collection in a Land of Extremes | Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden

July 17th, 2018|

Contributions and photos from Cheryl Birker, Naomi Fraga, and Duncan Bell Cheryl Birker examines the lowest point in the U.S. from atop Telescope Peak in the Panamint Range. People thought Cheryl Birker must be crazy when she told them she was going to be doing a 14-mile hike in Death Valley National Park to monitor [...]

Beyond the Islet – Integrated Conservation in Hawaii | National Tropical Botanic Garden

July 17th, 2018|

Contributions from Kenneth R. Wood, Michael DeMotta, and Seana Walsh, and photos from Kenneth R. Wood On a small rocky island, or more accurately, an islet, jutting up off the shore of Moloka’I, eight dwarf Naupaka (Scaevola coriacea) plants cluster together at the very top. It is the second largest population of this endangered species. Lower down on [...]

Prairie Facts

June 15th, 2018|

PHOTO: Meads milkweed In North America, you can find tallgrass prairie, mixed-grass prairie, or shortgrass prairie. Tallgrass: Its main feature is tall grasses, such as indiangrass (Sorghastrum nutans), big bluestem (Andropogon gerardi), little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium), and switchgrass (Panicum virgatum). Mixed-grass: A transition area between tallgrass prairies and shortgrass prairies. Shortgrass: The two most dominant grasses are blue [...]

What May be Limiting Reproduction and Viability of Mead’s Milkweed?

June 15th, 2018|

Missouri Botanical Garden Provided by Christy Edwards and Matthew Albrecht Missouri Botanical Garden is conducting a research project with the Center for Plant Conservation (CPC) on the species Mead’s milkweed (Asclepias meadii). This species is endemic to tallgrass prairies and listed as federally threatened on the Endangered Species Act. It is a long-lived perennial plant that [...]

Central Grassland Research

June 15th, 2018|

Lauritzen Botanic Gardens (Provided by Jim Locklear) Lauritzen Gardens has focused on the Central Grassland of North America and has been engaged in prairie work on several fronts. Three current projects are: Endemic Plants of the Central Grassland of North America, Sandsage Prairie Initiative, and Blowout Penstemon Seed Banking Project. Endemic Plants [...]

Prairie Plant Species Research

June 14th, 2018|

University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum (MLA) (Provided by David Remucal) The University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum safeguards nine species in the CPC National Collection. Three of these species, Cypripedium candidum, Platanthera praeclara, and Besseya bullii, are prairie species. The University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum has had great success growing the [...]

Experimental Prairie

June 14th, 2018|

The Morton Arboretum (Provided by Cathy Bechtoldt and Andrew Hipp) Ecological restoration is a critical component of conservation. Unfortunately, restored sites often fall short of common restoration goals such as maintenance of biodiversity over time, increased ecosystem function, and resistance to invasion by exotic weeds. The goal of this project is to test whether considering [...]

June Announcements, Employment and Events

June 13th, 2018|

Announcements Dr. Peter Raven awarded the National Geographic Hubbard Medal. Each year, National Geographic awards the Hubbard Medal to recognize “lifetime achievement in research, discovery, and exploration.” This year, the Hubbard Medal was awarded to Dr. Peter H. Raven for his work as a botanist and for his work as a conservation advocate. Learn more. [...]

What’s New for North America’s Rarest Conifer

May 31st, 2018|

Atlanta Botanical Garden “What’s new for Torreya taxifolia, North America’s rarest conifer?” Emily Coffey, PhD, Ron Determann, Rebecca Byrd, and Carrie Radcliffe One of the rarest conifers in the world is the Florida Torreya (Torreya taxifolia). It is endemic to northwest Florida and extreme southwest Georgia. A catastrophic decline in this species occurred in the [...]

A Weed or Not a Weed, That is The Question

May 1st, 2018|

Test your skills: determine which plants are considered weeds or invasives and which are rare plants. (The answers are at the end of the newsletter.) Answers to plant quiz above:  1. Houston Camphor daisy (Rare),  2. Ox-Eye Daisy with monarch butterfly (Weed),  3. Two-Spike Crabgrass (Rare),  4. Veldt Grass (Weed),  5. Golden Indian [...]

To Be, or Not to Be, a Weed

April 30th, 2018|

This month we are looking at plants that are endangered but could be mistaken for “weeds.” Both appearance and/or behavior can account for misconceptions and perceptions. What happens when there are plants that display weed-like characteristics, yet aren’t weeds? What happens when those plants are also endangered? How do we address the perception of “weed” to obtain and [...]

What is Darwin’s “Abominable Mystery?”

March 12th, 2018|

A problem that Charles Darwin called an “abominable mystery” was to determine how flowering plants became dominant so rapidly in ecosystems across the world. Darwin wrote to Joseph Hooker in 1879 that “the rapid development as far as we can judge of all the higher plants within recent geological times is an abominable mystery.” After all, plants existed for [...]

Who’s Your Pollinator?

February 28th, 2018|

Seana Walsh, National Tropical Botanical Garden Rappelling down cliffs on Kauai, sometimes suspended a thousand feet above the Pacific Ocean, botanists hand pollinated the critically endangered Hawaiian flowering plant, Brighamia insignis (Alula) in an attempt to save them now that its native pollinator is all but extinct. There had been speculation that the natural pollinator of both Brighamia species [...]

News from CPC | Past Beattie Fellowship Award Winner Christy Edwards

January 29th, 2018|

Highlights of Some of the Past Catherine H. Beattie Fellowship Awardees Each year, The Garden Club of America (GCA) and the CPC together award the Catherine H. Beattie Fellowship to graduate students in biology, horticulture, or a related field. The purpose of the award is “to promote conservation of rare and endangered flora in the United States, [...]

News from CPC Participating Institution Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden

January 26th, 2018|

From Jennifer Possley, MS, field biologist and Conservation Team leader at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden: “One of our two Lyonia truncata var. proctorii is about to flower! These plants were grown from seed collected by CESFO staff in May 2016, and sown by Field Botanist Jimmy Lange, after he carefully researched the best germination methods. Hopefully we will [...]

Pollinator Database

December 28th, 2017|

New this year to the CPC website is the interactive website tool or web app to explore pollinator networks. Most plant species rely on pollinators for reproduction. Without them, plants, including rare plant species, become even more threatened with extinction. CPC received funding from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation in order to compile a database of pollinators of rare plants. Kara Powell, [...]

Hurricane Irma Updates for Bok Tower Gardens and Montgomery Botanical Center

December 22nd, 2017|

BOK TOWER GARDENS “The Gardens are slowly returning to normal. Thanks to the power of Hurricane Irma, Bok Tower Gardens has a new garden feature. The Horticultural team was able to save one of the downed trees, and visitors are enjoying a wonderful arch to walk under as they stroll through the historic Olmsted design. Repairs on the greenhouse have [...]

The Kampong Hurricane Recovery Updates

December 20th, 2017|

“In early September, the high winds and storm surge from Hurricane Irma devastated The Kampong, the National Tropical Botanical Garden’s property in south Miami. I was able to go there a week after the storm and what I saw was heartbreaking. The Kampong was a war zone, and many of our iconic trees, the Baobab, Cannon Ball Tree, Yellow Royal [...]