Help Kew save 25% of the world's plants by 2020
Kew’s Millennium Seed Bank will soon celebrate a global landmark - conserving 10% of the world’s plants.
24 Sep 2009
Seed vaults at the Millennium Seed Bank
Kew working in Botswana
Dr Sacandé planting his Mongongo tree in the community garden at Tsetseng
Kew’s partners in Botswana are:
National Plant Genetic Resources Centre (NPGRC)
National Herbarium and Botanic Garden (NHBG)
Veld Products Research and Development (VPR&D)
National Tree Seed Centre (NTSC)
Botswana College of Agriculture
A personal appeal by Dr Moctar Sacandé, Millennium Seed Bank Regional Co-ordinator, West Africa.
By mid October 2009, Kew will have saved 10% of the world’s plants
We must all now ensure that our ‘global insurance policy’ continues to grow and I hope I can count on your support, needed now more than ever, to:
- Safeguard 25% of the world’s plants by 2020
- Use our seeds to bring a better quality of life to communities across the globe
- Share our skills and expertise to help our partners to conserve seeds and protect plants
We have saved virtually all the UK native plant species - as many as 300 UK plants are threatened with national extinction. But Kew also works worldwide with partner organisations collecting seeds to be stored at Millennium Seed Bank (MSB), at Wakehurst Place, West Sussex and in the country of origin.
But seed collection alone is not enough. The species we have already conserved are in great demand. We make the seed collections available to partner countries for research purposes.
Our work on the Mongongo tree (Schinziophyton rautenenii), a wild plant of Botswana, provides a good example of how our approach can benefit communities in Africa. The Mongongo tree produces a highly nutritious fleshy fruit and a nut that form part of the daily diet of subsistence communities in Botswana.
Our partners were struggling to germinate seedlings; from 100 seeds they could grow no more than 15 trees. Our research at the MSB helped discover how to germinate this species. Having shared our skills and knowledge they now grow an average of 87 saplings from 100 seeds. A greater harvest will hopefully create a better diet and a better quality of life.
We are also sharing skills, expertise and knowledge with partners, subsistence farmers and community organisations. By doing so the MSB is helping to solve some of the problems we face today, ranging from food production to new medicines, renewable energy to the preservation of important habitats.
The scope of our work is immense. We need your support to protect the resources that will help ensure our survival and that of communities across the globe. On average it costs us £2,200 to collect and store seeds of one species.
Please send a donation to help us achieve our goal of saving 25% of the world’s plants
You will help us save some of the 30,000 critically endangered plant species, before they are lost forever.
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