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Evaluation and conservation of the woody flora of the Zi-Ben-Shan mountains

Zi-Ben-Shan mountains (ZBS) in West Yunnan Province of Southwest China, lies between the upper reaches of the two famous Mekong (Lan-Can-Jiang in China) and Salween (Nu-Jiang in China) rivers, with the highest peak of around 3500 meters above the sea level. Because of the unique micro-geography and micro-climate caused by the two deep rivers’ valleys and the high Gao-Li-Gong and Bi-Luo mountains ranges, ZBS is certainly rich in plant species. Because of the transportation road from Mekong across the ZBS pass to Lu-Ku (by the Salween), the capital of Nu-Jiang Lisu Autonomous Prefecture bordered with Myamar, was built in 1982, the ZBS has being noticed by the botanists, horticulturists and forestry units / institution.

Zi-Ben-Shan mountains (ZBS) in west Yunnan Province of Southwest China, is very diverse in plant species and some economically (including ornamentals) and scientifically important plants, such as Rhododendron spp., Acer spp., Magnolia campbellii, Taxus yunnanensis, Euptelea pleiosperma, Tetracentron sinensis, Dipentodon sinicum, Cardiocrinus giganteum var. yunnanensis, Pleione forrestii, etc., are collectively distributed in there. However, ZBS has been greatly disturbed by human activities of logging, massively medicinal and ornamental collecting, mining and agricultural cropping, and the plant diversity and their habitats are seriously threatened. As the mountains has not yet been well botanically surveyed and bio-diversely evaluated. And thus its conservation has not yet been drawn attentions by local communities and the governments. The project objectives are:

  • To document the woody flora via the comprehensive field investigations and plant identification;

  • To evaluation the woody plant diversity via the multi-comparisons of the other relative mountains or regions in Yunnan of China;

  • To propose / list the woody plants for globally conservational concerns and to evaluate their threatening criteria;

  • To propagate the species for Ex-situ conservation at KBG / other plabces;

  • To emphasize the conservation importance/awareness of the ZBS via the workshops and project participation of the locals and the relative governmental departments;

  • To initiate species restoration / population re-enforcement in appropriate habitats;

  • To convince the establishment of ZBS as an important natural conserving spot or national / provincial forest park to be protected.

Partner: Kunming Institute of Botany, CAS