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‘Lost tree’ returns to Kew Gardens to mark the Queen’s birthday

Photo of Diospyros virginiana (persimmon) being planted
Wed, 2016-04-20 11:23

Kew Gardens honoured the occasion by planting a Diospyros virginiana, a persimmon, on the Orangery lawn.

It is thought the original was lost when the Sun Temple was destroyed by a falling tree in 1916.

The persimmon is located a short distance from where the Queen planted a Ginkgo biloba tree in 2009 to mark 250 years of Kew Gardens.

Missing: 70% of crop wild relatives

Tue, 2016-03-22 10:11

The research, carried out by The International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) in coordination with the Global Crop Diversity Trust (Crop Trust) and the Royal Botanic Gardens (RBG), Kew, has revealed significant gaps in the world’s genebanks, in terms of Crop Wild Relatives (CWR) diversity.

Over 70% of essential crop wild relative species are underrepresented and in need of urgent collection. The paper identifies which species are a priority, and where the hotspots for collections are.

State of the World's Plants Symposium – speakers announced

Photo of forest surrounded by mist
Tue, 2016-03-15 11:03

Find out more and register

State of the World's Plants Symposium, 11–12 May 2016

The State of the World’s Plants symposium will accompany the launch of a major new ground-breaking report highlighting the global status of plants, to be released on 10 May 2016.

The symposium will be a platform to discuss issues raised in the report and to engage the scientific community, policy makers and the public alike.

International Conservation Policy internship

Thu, 2016-02-25 15:17

Cactus specimens (Ferocactus spp.) smuggled into the UK (Photo: N.Smyth)

How sensitive are global ecosystems to climatic variability?

Image showing a global snapshot of the Vegetation Sensitivity Index (VSI), a new indicator of vegetation sensitivity to climate variability using satellite data between 2000-2013 at 5km resolution
Wed, 2016-02-17 18:00

Identifying sensitive ecosystems

Projected changes in climate in the 21st century are likely to have profound impacts on global ecosystems and it is essential to identify those regions that are most sensitive to these changes. In this study, the authors use a novel approach to characterise ecosystem responses to climate variability across global terrestrial systems. The new metric designed by the team is called the Vegetation Sensitivity Index (VSI) and measures the sensitivity of vegetation to air temperature, water availability and cloud cover.