Seed and Bulb Exchanges, some Comments

Jane McGary
Sat, 15 Jul 2006 20:31:19 PDT
Diane Whitehead wrote,

>   NARGS (North American Rock Garden Society) will not list seed of
>endangered plants.  I don't know what happens if such seed is
>donated.  Perhaps it is given to a botanic garden, which is what
>happens when CITES listed plants are discovered by Customs inspectors.

This is not quite true. I was the intake cataloger for this exchange for 3 
years in the mid-1990s, so I have experience with its policies. NARGS will 
list seed of CITES listed plants and endangered species if the seed is FROM 
A CULTIVATED SOURCE (garden collected). I don't remember encountering any 
wild collected seed of federally listed endangered species donated to the 
exchange. As for state listed species, NARGS does not maintain this 
information on its database, as far as I know; and given the strange things 
that happen with state listing (particularly the tendency to list outlying 
populations of plants that are common in other states), this makes sense to 
me. Certainly CITES listing doesn't come into it, as you can see by the 
long list of garden-grown Cyclamen seeds on the NARGS seedlist (the whole 
genus Cyclamen is CITES listed as a result of overcollecting of tubers from 
the wild, mostly in Turkey).

The only seeds discarded by the NARGS exchange are obviously non-viable 
ones, rotten ones, those too large to handle (e.g., oak seeds), and a whole 
list of noxious weeds -- many of the latter are donated by European members 
who classify as "wildflowers" plants that, on introduction to North 
America, became "noxious weeds."

Jane McGary

More information about the pbs mailing list