Paul LICHT plicht@berkeley.edu
Thu, 16 Jan 2014 07:38:24 PST
The UC Botanical Garden has four NAPCC collection of plants so far (Oaks,
magnolias, cycads and ferns) and we're preparing applications for more
(e.g., Rhododendron). One point her is that there is a rigorous application
process. As many of you know, we hold many 'extremely' rare plants (several
already extinct in nature) but these are not the foundation of our NAPCC
status; they can include otherwise complete or historic collections.  This
program does not just focus on rare plants but rather important
collections, Our director of horticulture and collections served as chair
of NAPCC for two years and can provide more detail.

One of the criteria for collection recognition is plans for future
preservation which is perhaps one of the most difficult issue for
preserving private collections (which often end with the collector 'ends').
 Other general considerations in this imperfect process would be the
difficulty in tracking a large number private collections as well as the
lack of data in private collections. Unfortunately, the program is not
highly funded (there is a fee to be 'accredited') and while in a perfect
world, it would benefit from tracking all collections, it's simply not
practical yet.

One could argue whether a plant is really 'extinct' if it only exists in
collections. One point would be that they could potentially be used for
reintroduction (we are doing this with natives) but I think this process
would be more difficult from private collections, especially if data on
provenance are lacking.


Paul Licht, Director
University of California Botanical Garden
200 Centennial Drive
Berkeley, CA 94720

On Thu, Jan 16, 2014 at 7:20 AM, Dennis Kramb <dkramb@badbear.com> wrote:

> The typical life expectancy of a plant in my care ranges from 5 weeks to 5
> years.  Therefore do not entrust me with any rarities.  I can even kill
> Wal-Mart Hippeastrums.  It's why I've gravitated towards locally native
> flora... grown exclusively outdoors.  They have the best chance of
> survival.
> That being said, I do have a remarkable collection of oddball plants
> including rare & endangered species like Iliamna remota, Boltonia
> decurrens, and Silphium brachiatum.  They're all from neighboring states,
> though, so it's not too remarkable that they survive here.
> The oldest plants in my care are some windowsill cacti about 20 years old.
> Next are a handful of bearded irises about 15 years old.  But out of all
> the plants I've ever tried growing, my kill:///success/ ratio is strongly
> skewed towards the killed column.
> Regarding the security of rare plants in big institutions I'm dismayed when
> they don't have security cameras.  In this age cameras are cheap.  Protect
> your investments!
> DK in Cincinnati
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