Kew supporters celebrate the publication of 'The last great plant hunt - the story of Kew’s Millennium Seed Bank'

Kew's newest book title was given a great launch with authors, supporters of Kew's Millennium Seed Bank and staff attending a celebratory party in the Nash Conservatory, to welcome the book's publication.

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10 Jun 2011

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The book launch was held in Kew's Nash Conservatory, a stunning nineteenth-century glasshouse.

Kew’s supporters and members, staff and writers all came together to celebrate the publication of a new book from Kew Publishing, The last great plant hunt – the story of Kew’s Millennium Seed Bank, in the Nash Conservatory at Kew Gardens.

Buy the book


  • Get your copy from Kew's online shop today.
  • Also available in the shop at Kew Gardens and Wakehurst.

Introducing the authors

Two of the book’s authors, Carolyn Fry and Sue Seddon were on-hand to sign copies and were joined by Gina Fullerlove, Head of Kew Publishing together with Dr Paul Smith, Head of the Millennium Seed Bank Partnership (MSBP) and Professor Stephen Hopper, Director, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Carolyn Fry is a journalist and author of two other Kew books, The Plant Hunters and The World of Kew, and Sue Seddon is former editor of Kew magazine. Gail Vines, the third author of the book, is also a regular contributor to Kew magazine.

Helping Kew to make a difference

A joint event between Kew Foundation and Kew Publishing, the evening brought together some of the donors who have helped to support the work of the MSBP over the years. Kew Foundation raises income from membership, donations and grants which all help to fund the vital science and conservation work that Kew does around the world, including projects like the Millennium Seed Bank Partnership.

The last great plant hunt book describes the importance of seed collecting and the work of Kew's Millennium Seed Bank, the process of collecting and taking care of seeds, the uses of banked seed and the future of seed conservation worldwide.

Many supporters that attended the event had sponsored a species through the ‘Adopt a Seed, Save a Species’ campaign, or have been giving a monthly donation through the Kew Fund, both of which help Kew raise vital funds for its work.

Professor Stephen D. Hopper, Director, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew addresses the guests.

About the book

The Millennium Seed Bank Partnership has been described by Sir David Attenborough as 'perhaps the most significant conservation initiative ever'. This beautifully illustrated book reveals how in just 10 years more than 3.5 billion seeds from nearly 25000 species have been collected, in partnership with 120 institutions in 54 countries.

A great read for all who care about our environment and the future of plants. The large-format book is nearly 200 pages in full colour and is now available to buy from Kew's online shop as well as the shops located on-site at Kew Gardens and Wakehurst.

Buy the book today

Get involved - Adopt a Seed, Save a Species

We have successfully banked 10% of the world's wild plant species and we have set our sights on saving 25% by 2020.

Without plants there could be no life on earth, and yet every day another four plant species face extinction. Too often when we hear these kind of statistics there is little that we can do as individuals, but thanks to Kew's Millennium Seed Bank partnership and the Adopt a Seed, Save a Species campaign there is something that you can do to ensure the survival of a plant species.

Adopt a seed for just £25 | Save a plant species outright

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