Kew's Millennium Seed Bank partnership – Victoria
Kew's Millennium Seed Bank partnership has helped to bank over 70% of Victoria’s threatened plant species and germination protocols to enable future reintroduction and use have been established for around 75%.
Victorian Conservation Seedbank collector, Jeff Jeanes collecting Melaleuca lanceolata (Image: VCS)
The devastating fires of February 2009 eliminated the only known population of the shrub Nematoleplis wilsonii from a mountain forest near Melbourne. Seeds of this species collected for the MSBP, and plants in cultivation at the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, are enabling the re-establishment of this plant. Over 150 plants grown from seed and cuttings have been planted into a new home in an adjacent, unburnt catchment.Tim Entwisle, Director and Chief Executive, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne
Plant life in Victoria is under threat
In Australian terms, Victoria has a modest flora with some 3,400 plant species listed for the State with about 10% of those being endemic to Victoria.
The Victorian flora includes the worlds tallest flowering plant, the Mountain Ash or Eucalyptus regnans. Some 700 species are regarded as rare or threatened and 44 species are thought to have become extinct since European settlement.
In the past, land clearance and modification particularly on the fertile western and northern plains have been the major cause of species loss.
These days it is the continued urban expansion, invasion of natural habitats by exotic species and the increasing incidence and severity of drought that threatens the health of the State's diverse habitats.
Environment and climate
The climate of Victoria ranges from the low rainfall in the North West (<300mm) to over 1500mm in the eastern ranges. Victoria has a wide range of vegetation types, including alpine meadows, mallee, grasslands, grassy woodlands, forests, heathlands, wetlands and coastal scrub. Some of our plants (and animals) are found nowhere else in the world.
Saving seeds for the future in Victoria
The Victorian Conservation Seedbank has a particular focus on securing seed material for the State threatened flora.
Currently the VCS holds seedlots for over 700 species representing about 20% of the of the State's flora. High quality seedlots of over 55% of nationally threatened species, endemic to the State are secured in long term storage.
Kew's Millennium Seed Bank partnership's collaborators in the State of Victoria are the National Herbarium of Victoria , which is part of the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne and which is also home to the Victorian Conservation Seedbank.
Here, the seed conservation team work closely with their counterpart field teams from the Department of Environment & Sustainability, ensuring that seed collections and improved seed management protocols are readily available to support the various plant species and habitat management plans underway in the State.
Discover more about our work in Australia...
Our team in Victoria
Michiel van Slageren, International Project Coordinator
Our partner in Victoria
Plant stories from Victoria
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