A future for cacti?
The Ghent University Botanical Garden and Research Group Spermatophytes collaborate with BGCI on several projects to assess the conservation value of ex situ collections.
A future for cacti? focuses on three mainly Chilean cactus genera, Copiapoa, Eriosyce and Eulychnia. As a first step in the project, detailed collection information was requested from botanic gardens worldwide to complement the data in BGCI’s PlantSearch database. This information will be compiled into a status report of the ex situ collections of these genera. This report forms a case study for the BGCI/IOS Cactus and Succulent Plant Survey, a global ex situ survey of collections of all cacti and succulent taxa.
| Copiapoa krainziana (credit Isabel Larridon)|
Using the data provided by BGCI's PlantSearch database and individual botanic gardens, samples from selected species have been requested to use in a molecular study to assess the genetic diversity present in ex situ collections. The genetic diversity present in botanic garden collections will be compared with the total genetic diversity present in the wild populations of these species in Chile. A representative set of samples of wild populations was collected recently in Chile in collaboration with the Jardín Botánico Nacional in Viña del Mar.
Further information about the project is available from Isabel Larridon, the project leader at Ghent University.
Find Out More
To find out more about the Ghent University Research Group Spermatophytes, click here.
To find out more about the Botanical Garden of the University of Ghent visit their GardenSearch profile.