Progress on Conserving Genetic Diversity in Botanic Gardens: An Update

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Sean Hoban, The Morton Arboretum The world’s botanic gardens and seed banks collectively safeguard millions of plants from more than 100,000 species. However it is not known how many plants should be preserved of each species to conserve genetic diversity and adaptive potential. At The Morton Arboretum, with many collaborators, we have investigated this question over […]

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Active Management of Exceptional Species is Needed to Maintain Robust Ex situ Collections

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Zoe Diaz-Martin, Chicago Botanic Garden Are botanic gardens effectively managing populations of exceptional plant species held across collections? Do garden collections represent the amount of genetic diversity that characterizes the in situ population? We explore these questions in the rare palm Attalea crassispatha, an exceptional species endemic to Haiti with fewer than 50 individuals found […]

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Coordinating Collections to Conserve Exceptional Species

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Amy Byrne, The Morton Arboretum A 2019 study by Griffith, et al. showed that gardens must collaborate to conserve genetic diversity, especially for exceptional species whose seeds cannot be conventionally seed banked. This process of capturing the genetic diversity of exceptional species in ex situ collections requires a tailored strategy for each species, emphasizing the need […]

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Flexible Seed Harvest: Revisiting the 10% Rule

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Michelle DePrenger-Levin, Denver Botanic Gardens; Michael Kunz, North Carolina Botanical Garden; Emily Coffey, Atlanta Botanic Garden; Tom Kaye, Institute for Applied Ecology; Anna Lampei Bucharová, Institute of Landscape Ecology (ILÖK), University of Münster Seed collection is a vital conservation method used to ensure global food security by maintaining a source of genetic diversity in food […]

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Range-wide Ex Situ Seed Conservation and Population Genetic Architecture Analysis in Venus Flytrap (Dionaea muscipula)

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Dr. Johnny Randall, North Carolina Botanical Garden The infamous Venus flytrap, Dionaea muscipula, found across North Carolina and into South Carolina, has been seen to be declining in recent years. It is currently under review for federal listing, is ranked G2 on NatureServe, and considered vulnerable by RedList. Threats to this charismatic plant include poaching, […]

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Conserving Genetic Diversity of Southeastern Oaks and Magnolias in Botanic Gardens: How Much is Needed?

Dr. Sean Hoban, The Morton Arboretum, Taylor Callicrate, Species Conservation Toolkit Initiative, Chicago Zoological Society, Susan Deans, Plant Biology and Conservation Program, Northwestern University, Michael Dosmann, The Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, Jeremie Fant, Chicago Botanic Garden, Oliver Gailing, University of Göttingen, Kayri Havens, Chicago Botanic Garden, Andrew Hipp, The Morton Arboretum, Priyanka Kadav, Michigan […]

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Science in Recovery: Life History of Euphorbia telephioides, a Threatened Species Endemic to the Florida Panhandle: Are These Data Useful to Evaluate Conservation?

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Dr. Vivian Negrón-Ortiz, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Ms. Melanie Kaeser, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service To protect and manage species listed under the U.S. Endangered Species Act requires the use of the best available science. Field-based studies on topics such as demography, reproductive biology, and seed ecology have provided sound conservation strategies for many […]

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The Ethical Forager: A Review of Harvesting Regulations and Practices for Threatened Medicinal Plants on Public and Private Lands in the Southeast

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Laramie Smith, University of Georgia Dr. James Affolter, State Botanical Garden of Georgia and Department of Horticulture at the University of Georgia As the herbal supplement and alternative health industries grow, foraging for wild medicinals is becoming a more common and profitable phenomenon. In addition to the financial incentive to harvest non-timber forest products (NTFPs), […]

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Conserving Genetic Diversity in Seed Collections

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Joe Davitt, Institute for Conservation Research, San Diego Zoo Global Maintaining a plant species’ genetic diversity can contribute to adaptive potential, prevent inbreeding effects, and potentially preserve traits such as drought tolerance and disease resistance, all of which are critical in a changing climate. Seed collections are often the best method of conserving the genetic diversity of rare plant populations ex-situ, […]

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Genetic diversity, structure and distribution of Australian Cycas

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Manuel Luján, Jian Liu, Nathalie Nagalingum, California Academy of Sciences, Kunming Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences Rare plant species exhibit narrow geographic distribution and are often considered to have smaller populations and lower levels of genetic diversity compared to their more common relatives. The genus Cycas includes about 117 species, 32 of which are […]

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Conservation Genomics and Species Delimitation of Mascarene Ebony trees (Diospyros)

Screenshot of Conservation Genomics and Species Delimitation of Mascarene Ebony trees (Diospyros) video

Alexander G. Linan, Porter P. Lowry II, Allison Miller, George E. Schatz, Jean-Claude Sevathian, Christine E. Edwards, Saint Louis University, Missouri Botanical Garden, Institut de Systématique, Évolution et Biodiversité (ISYEB), Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique/Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle/École, Pratique des Hautes Études, Université Pierre et Marie Curie, Sorbonne Universités, Donald Danforth Plant Science Center The ebony and persimmon […]

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Genetic Diversity Assessment of Sassafras albidum for Conservation Efforts

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Fred Gouker, Abigail Moore, Kevin Conrad, Margaret Pooler, USDA-ARS U.S. National Arboretum, Floral and Nursery Plants Research Unit, Enviromental and Plant Biology Department, Ohio University Sassafras albidum is a well-known, ecologically important tree that is dispersed throughout the Eastern United States. Its root and bark oil were commonly used as a flavoring agent for many products […]

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Applying Genomics to Conservation

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Dr. Aryn Wilder, Institute for Conservation Research, San Diego Zoo Global Human activity has left species worldwide on the brink of extinction, where they are susceptible to the loss of genetic diversity and the accumulation of deleterious mutations that reduce adaptive potential and increase extinction risk. The application of modern genomic tools allows us to more […]

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Trees Will Adapt, Migrate or Die

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Trees Will Adapt, Migrate or Die Barbara Crane, US Forest Service, National Forest System (SePPCon 2016) Barbara Crane, USFS, describes special considerations for trees.  Because the are long-lived, they cannot respond quickly to multiple threats from pathogens, fire, drought and climate change. Rates of historic migration of 300 to 1200 ft/yr cannot keep up with the […]

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Cryobiotechnology for maintaining genetic diversity of exceptional species: The case of Crotalaria avonensis

Screenshot of Cryobiotechnology for maintaining genetic diversity of exceptional species: The case of Crotalaria avonensis video

Valerie Pence and Megan Philpott, Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden Crotalaria avonensis is a Florida endemic found in three populations and characterized by low seed production. In the late 1990s, CREW developed protocols for tissue culture propagation from field collected shoot cuttings as well as cryopreservation methods. In order to develop a genetically representative collection […]

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