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article imageRestoring England’s green and pleasant land

By Alexander Baron     Aug 17, 2011 in Environment
As the cleanup begins after the London riots, another restoration product of an entirely different kind is launched in the English countryside.
Kew is not only the home to Britain’s National Archives but to the world famous Royal Botanical Gardens; though most people may associate this with a pleasant day out or a mandatory tourist destination, it is also a major centre for botanical research and home to the Millennium Seedbank. According to this international project, up to a hundred thousand species of plants are under threat, and they have already saved 10% of the world’s seeds with over a billion actual seeds kept on site. They hope to increase this to 25% by 2020.
This week they have been taking a more parochial view, and have launched the UK Native Seed Hub in partnership with the Weald Meadows Initiative of the High Weald Landscape Trust. Initially, this will involve cultivating a one hectare area of seed production beds at Wakehurst Place in Sussex with difficult to grow native plants such as the cuckoo flower. They plan in due course to extend this to the rest of the UK in an effort to restore our vanishing lowland meadows, so much of which has already gone.
More about Kew royal botanical gardens, seedbank, Seeds, Conservation, Preservation
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