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How to Save Plants - Approaches to Plant Conservation

Help BGCI secure valuable plant diversityWhat can we do to tackle to many threats that plants face around the world?

In situ conservation is the conservation of species in their natural setting, allowing us to maintain natural systems and processes.

Ex situ conservation is the conservation of species removed from their natural setting, safe-guarding the plants even if their natural habitats are destroyed or their populations decimated. This also allows the possibility of restoring degraded natural systems.

Sustainability of plant use and generally sustainable living is ultimately necessary if we are to ensure the long-term conservation of all our natural resources. At present we do not properly value the many benefits of our natural resources, so our activities tend to deplete and degrade them, even though they are essential for human-kind's survival and well-being.

Major Threats to Plant Diversity

It is estimated that there are 270,000 plant species in the world, and one in eight are threatened with extinction. This page describes the main threats, and provides links to more information.


Conservation Projects in Africa


Links: Conservation Organisations

We've been compiling links relating to plant conservation that you might find useful.


The GSPC - A Plan to Save the World's Plant Species

Working through a unique partnership of international and national organisations, Parties, other Governments and NGOs, the 'Convention on Biological Diversity' has developed a "Global Strategy for Plant Conservation". Botanic gardens are getting involved and BGCI is a key player in the partnership.



Find Out More

Plants for a Future
Plants For A Future is a resource centre for rare and unusual plants, particularly those which have edible, medicinal or other uses. The site features a database of plants to help humanity discover and use a wider range than the twenty plants that provide the majority of our food.

PlantCollections - A Community Solution
The Chicago Botanic Garden, in collaboration with APGA, the University of Kansas, and 15 public gardens nationwide, is developing PlantCollections, an online database to help analyse combined holdings, a first step in coordinating a continent-wide approach to plant germplasm preservation.

The National Council for the Conservation of Plants and Gardens
The NCCPG supports 650 collections in Britain of cultivated (garden) plants, by encouraging (through it's members) the propagation and conservation of endangered garden plants in the British Isles (both species and cultivars). The remit includes research, history, cultural background, and education.

International Agenda for Botanic Gardens in Conservation
The International Agenda is a global policy framework for botanic gardens worldwide to contribute to biodiversity conservation. Find out more about how botanic gardens are contributing here.