Professor César Gómez-Campo - a founder figure in wild species seed banking
The Millennium Seed Bank conserves seeds of wild species. It might not have existed but for early pioneering work in Spain and at Kew.
19 Nov 2009
Professor César Gómez-Campo, one of the pioneers of seed banking
Professor César Gómez-Campo, who passed away on 6 September 2009, was one of the first people to use seed banking for the conservation of wild plant species.
In 1966 Professor César Gómez-Campo established a seed bank primarily for Crucifers at the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Spain. He was a contemporary of Dr Peter Thompson who pioneered wild plant species seed banking at Kew not long after, and who passed away in 2008.
Through their visionary work, seed banking has become a mainstream method for conserving plant species away from where they are threatened in the wild. This has paved the way for regional and global activities such as the European Native Seed Conservation Network (ENSCONET) and the Millennium Seed Bank partnership, both of which have involved Kew.
Professor César Gómez-Campo was active to the end on seed banking issues, highlighting the necessity of good quality containers for long-term banking and the value of ultra-dry storage.
Get involved - Adopt a Seed, Save a Species
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.
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