What would you save?
The average amount it costs to ensure a species of plant will never become extinct is £2,000. We have specially chosen species at £2,000 and at £1,000, that you can sponsor outright. Imagine yourself as the person or group who made sure that one of these species is protected forever.
To recognise your extraordinary contribution we will send you a certificate, a beautifully produced photograph of the species that you are responsible for safeguarding, and an invitation to take a tour of Kew's Millennium Seed Bank at Wakehurst, West Sussex. We will also record your gift on the touchscreen register at the Millennium Seed Bank.
While not everyone will have access to that amount of money, it is a sum that a group of friends could raise doing a sponsored event, like a walk or cycle, or by getting together to make a contribution. And don't forget that you can adopt a seed for just £25.
If you're interested in saving a species but want to find out what other species might be available contact Jill Taylor on 0208 332 3248 (Monday to Friday, 9am - 5pm) to find out more. You can also read more about how the money is allocated.
We'd like to thank the following supporters who have already sponsored these plant species at Kew's Millennium Seed Bank.
A rare and endangered thorny desert plant from Lebanon
Sponsored for £1,000 in memory of Peggy Yorke Allen by Charlotte, Harriet and John Allen
Found growing on trees and rocks of dry tropical forests of Madagascar, many species of of Angraecum are considered to be at risk from extinction in the wild.
Sponsored by The Volunteer Guides at Kew to commemorate 20 years of guiding at Kew
As well as being attractive plants, they provide food and shelter for pygmy possums and other native animals.
Sponsored at £2,000, with thanks to Ian Ridpath.
A species new to science, which through seed banking activity has its future guaranteed.
Sponsored to celebrate the 40th wedding anniversary of Martin and Rosie Godfrey.
Known as the stinking hawk's-beard, this rare UK native plant is found in south-east coastal sites.
Sponsored by the Uckfield Community Technology College.
Although widely distributed in Europe and temperate Asia, the lady's slipper orchid was at the brink of extinction in Britain, with only one known specimen left.
Sponsored at £2,000, with thanks to Chris and Lucy Taylor.
Propagated plants of this endangered Chilean plant species are ready to be reintroduced to the wild. This beautiful species is endemic, known only to be found in Chile.
Sponsored at £2,000, with thanks to Mrs Dale from Brighton.
A UK native plant species threatened by habitat decline.
Sponsored at £2,000, in celebration of a golden wedding anniversary.
A South African heather species, this plant was rediscovered a century after it was last collected.
Sponsored at £1,000, as a gift for Mr Alan and Mr Ted Grey.
A wild meadow species from the UK, the Dropwort (Filipendula vulgaris) has fine fern-like leaves and pretty white flowers.
Sponsored in celebration of the second birthday of a beloved Grandchild, Rhoda Naomi
A once widespread plant species, this beautiful geophyte is on the verge of extinction in the wild. Gladiolus aureus is endemic, known only to be found in the Cape Peninsula of South Africa.
Sponsored at £1,000 in memory of Ruth Button.
A new species in the pea family, discovered in Namibia.
Sponsored as a Christmas present for Dr. M. Anne Reid.
A multi-purpose species known only to be found in Madagascar.
Sponsored at £2,000, with thanks to Mr Morries from Lancashire.
The most economically important edible wild plant in Lebanon.
Sponsored in memory of Kay Leadbeter.
The Paralophia is a genus endemic to Madagascar and consist of only two species (the other being P. palmicola). As the name suggests, Paralophia epiphytica is an epiphyte, found on trees, climbing amongst leaf bases on the trunks of palm trees.
Sponsored at £1,000, with thanks to Valerie Livesey.
A deep blue, almost purple wildflower that is not as it seems: each head, rather than being a single bloom, is actually a collection of smaller ones, huddled together. This is the “County flower of Sussex” and is also known as the Pride of Sussex.
Sponsored in memory of Jacqueline Nichols (nee Crick) by her family & friends
A highly threatened Namibian plant from the mint family, down to only 120 known plants in the wild.
Sponsored at £1,000 by the 2010 Year 6 classes of Holly Trees Primary School, Brentwood, Essex.
A South African shrub down to just 17 individuals in the wild.
Sponsored by Nicole Smith on behalf of herself, Meryl Smith, Cecilia Frances Eugene Croft and Petronella Cornelia (Naude) Havemann.
The low growing Lesser celandine is from the buttercup family. It is also known as ‘spring messenger’ as the plant is often referred to in literature as a sign of spring and is a British native.
Sponsored on behalf of Lucien Fa by his Friends and colleagues at Yoplait UK Limited to celebrate his retirement after 10 illustrious years as CEO Yoplait Groupe
This lovely wildflower is widespread but localised in the UK and Ireland, particularly in the southern regions. The spread of this species has declined in recent years due to the loss of its habitat as a result of drainage of land to make way for more intensive agriculture.
Sponsored by the members of The Ballet Association on behalf of Dame Monica Mason to celebrate her retirement after 54 illustrious years in The Royal Ballet, ten years as Director and her Patronage of The Ballet Association
Known as the flycatcher bush, this plant does not consume the insects it traps but rather provides food for the assassin bugs. It has even been known to catch small birds.
Sponsored at £1,000 with thanks to Kew's own Digital Media Team - raising the money through a cycle ride from Kew Gardens to the Millennium Seed Bank at Wakehurst, West Sussex.
The pale blue-violet flowers of Salvia verbenaca, a British native, attracts many insects, and are also edible by humans. Known as wild clary or wild sage.
Sponsored by RBG, Kew Enterprises in memory of a dear friend and colleague Hideyuki Kobayashi
The Sobennikoffia is a genus endemic to Madagascar and consists of only three species. S. humbertiana can be found growing in evergreen forests on plateau and dry, deciduous scrubland and is a lithophyte (a plant growing upon stones and rocks). The flowers are white with a green mark in the throat of the spur and have a prominent 3-lobed lip and upcurved spur.
Sponsored In loving memory of Jasmine Sookoo from her family, who miss her greatly. "She was as beautiful as an orchid"
A critically endangered plant species with only two surviving wild specimens remaining, on the island of St Helena.
A central European violet known from only four localities and threatened by urban development.
Sponsored as a gift for Mrs Joy Helen Ironside.
The plant has small, bright orange-yellow flowers with white or yellowish-haired stamens, and is also known as Clasping-leaved mullein, Clasping mullein, and Woolly mullein. Orange mullein has been used by herbalists to treat catarrh and other ailments - claims have even been made that fresh pieces of this species will drive away rodents.
Sponsored in celebration of the first birthday of a beloved Grandchild, Rhoda Naomi
From Guyana, the flaming sword plant (Vriesea splendens) is an epiphyte, growing on other plants rather than in soil, in tropical rainforests. The stripy leaves grow in a rosette shape and the bright red flower spike bears many small yellow flowers.
Sponsored as a gift for Rebecca Levy by Scott Aitken
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The latest news and blogs
14 Jun 2013
Receive training in seed collecting and discuss the use of seeds for restoration and re-introduction, in the beautiful grounds of Wakehurst Place. This training day is delivered by Kew as part of the Flora Locale training programme.
10 Jun 2013
Scientists at Kew Gardens have discovered compounds new to science in ordinary elderflower drinks.
10 Jun 2013
Letter and plans from Kew's Directors' Correspondence archive give a glimpse into the humble beginnings of one of botany's most revered institutions - Missouri Botanical Garden - and its founder Henry Shaw.
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.
14 Sep 2011
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew announced today that Director (CEO and Chief Scientist), Professor Stephen Hopper FLS will step down in autumn 2012 after six years in the job.