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Seed banking not an option for many threatened plants

The Global Strategy for Plant Conservation requires 75% of threatened plant species conserved ex situ by 2020. Currently, ex situ conservation focuses on conventional seed banking, yet this method is unsuitable for many threatened species. The 75% target is unattainable without urgent investment into alternative techniques.

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Fig. 1: The likely proportions of seed storage behaviours across different plant lists.
Fig. 2: The likely proportions of recalcitrant species on different plant lists in relation to the estimated proportion of the list made up of trees from tropical moist forest and mangrove habitats.


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The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, is part funded by Grant in Aid from the UK Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

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SVW undertook the analyses; SVW, JBD and KJW wrote the manuscript.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Sarah V. Wyse.

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The authors declare no competing interests.

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Wyse, S.V., Dickie, J.B. & Willis, K.J. Seed banking not an option for many threatened plants. Nature Plants 4, 848–850 (2018).

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