Science & Conservation at Kew
As well as a World Heritage Site with 250 years of history, Kew is a world leading plant science and conservation organisation. Our scientific resources and expertise are focused on finding plant-based solutions to global challenges such as biodiversity loss, food and water security, poverty, disease and changing climate. The strategy at the heart of this work is Kew’s Breathing Planet Programme.
Helping the planet breathe
Kew's Breathing Planet Programme consists of seven roads to a more resilient planet. Find out more about our work here.
The latest news and blogs
07 Mar 2014
William Milliken, Head of Kew's Tropical America team, examines the importance of Kew's collection of over seven million herbarium specimens, and how this resource is being used to tackle the global challenges of our time.
21 Feb 2014
André Schuiteman, senior researcher in orchids at Kew, relates the discovery by the intrepid Evelyn Cheesman of one of the very few blue-flowered epiphytic orchids, Dendrobium azureum, which he recently described as a new species.
14 Feb 2014
Madeleine Groves, the CITES Implementation Officer at Kew, describes how the application of science can help combat illegal wildlife trade.
08 Nov 2012
A new study from Kew suggests that Arabica coffee could be extinct in the wild within 70 years.
18 May 2010
Kew’s top propagation ‘code-breaker’, horticulturist Carlos Magdalena, has cracked the enigma of growing a rare species of African waterlily. The 'thermal’ lily (Nymphaea thermarum) is believed to be the smallest waterlily in the world, with pads that can be as little as 1 cm in diameter.
The Plant Family Tree
Mark Chase, Head of the Jodrell Laboratory at Kew, reveals how Kew's science work has shaped our understanding of the plant family tree forever.
Making a difference around the world
Find out about the new discoveries Kew's science teams have made across plant science and mycology, how the Millennium Seed Bank Partnership is driving vital global conservation work and how our innovative research into the use of plants is helping communities worldwide.
All life depends on plants - and not just those we value most. The health of the planet - and our future - depends on the immense wealth of different species of plants and fungi that grow in the Earth's many and varied habitats.
Why you need Kew
More than one in five of the world's plants are threatened with extinction. We all rely on plants for food, clean air and water, but they are more threatened than birds, and as threatened as mammals. We need to understand more about how plants adapt to environmental change, and how to use them in ways that are sustainable. Much of Kew’s work is focused on these challenges.
- Explore the state of plant life around the world
- Local plants for local people
- Kew video - Perspectives on biodiversity
- Support Kew's work by adopting a seed for £25