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ISHS Acta Horticulturae 615: IV International Conifer Conference

UPDATE ON THE RECOVERY OF TORREYA TAXIFOLIA AT THE ATLANTA BOTANICAL GARDEN, GEORGIA, USA

Authors:   M. Groves, R. Determann
Keywords:   conservation, Georgia (USA), Georgia Plant Conservation Alliance, Lake Seminole, recovery plan, stinking cedar, Taxaceae, Torreya taxifolia
DOI:   10.17660/ActaHortic.2003.615.49
Abstract:
A review of recent developments in the recovery programme for Torreya taxifolia, an endangered American member of the Taxaceae, is presented, together with a summary of the methods used in this co-operative project. Factors responsible for the decline of the species include habitat loss and alteration due to lake construction, and attack by Phytophthora fungus. Following recommendations made under the U.S. Endangered Species Act 1984, ex situ conservation efforts were initiated by various institutes as part of a species recovery plan. The part played by Atlanta Botanical Garden in this programme is described. Cuttings representing 150 genotypes have been distributed to regional botanic gardens and other research institutions. Nineteen plants representing ten different clones have also been planted at Smithgall Woods in north Georgia. The importance of staff continuity and of institutional collaboration to the success of ex situ conservation projects is emphasised; in the case of T. taxifolia, these components have greatly aided the speciesí recovery.

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