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We are losing the world plant cover at an increasingly worrying rate which is reducing the ecosystem this is mainly as a result of devastating human activities putting some plant species at risk of extinction. Some of the activities that are contributing to the destruction of the plants’ species include over-harvesting, poor forestry practices, environmental pollution, climatic changes, urbanization, and exotic invasive plant species and many other vicious human activities. There are a variety of roles plants plays to contribute to our healthy and comfortable living, plants are our main source of nutrients, oxygen, medicine and home to millions of animal species, therefore, we need to develop an integrative conservation approach that ensures we protect and maintain them especially the endangered plant species. One of the ideal ways to conserve and protect plant species is through plant botanic gardens, these gardens play a vital role in the protection of endangered plant species, for scientific research as well as for human needs. Botanic gardens are playing a significant role in changing the world in a variety of ways, to learn more about them continue reading this article.
One of the reasons for having plant botanical gardens is to increase the world plant species biodiversity in an attempt to counter the plant cover lose that is contributed by vicious human activities and climate change, today there are over 2500 botanical gardens with over 6 million accessions of living plant, this is equivalent to a quarter of the world plant species which contribute greatly to the conservation of endangered species and diversification of plant species.
The other role of botanical gardens is in scientific research, botanical gardens serve as a taxonomic research center, researchers also find plant botanical gardens important in providing valuable plant ecology data such as a phenological indication of climate change, collection of data that can help them assess plant-animal interactions, data relating to plant physiology among other important data. Botanical gardens can also provide plant information that contributes to a strong understanding of their functional characteristics such as trade-offs between species traits and plant performance.
Plant botanic conservation are important in/ex situ conservation and utilization, given that there estimated 6 million accessions in botanical gardens with over 80 thousand plant species it provides an excellent opportunity to understand the threatened species, furthermore the ex-situ conservation which means conservation of biological diversity from their natural habitat has contributed greatly in protection, maintaining and support of threatened plant species. Those are some main roles of botanic garden conservation but also important roles of these botanic gardens include spreading awareness to the public about threatened plant species and the need to protect the earth’s plant cover.