Are you interested in helping to conserve, rehabilitate and restore our native lands? The August 26 “Seeds of Success” training session will be a great opportunity for your to learn about how you can participate in area seed collection programs being held this fall. The training will be held in the Fishbowl Meeting Room in the IMAX Building (Chestnut St. at 2nd) starting at 9 am with a presentation by Andy Wright from the North Carolina Botanical Society on collecting native plant seeds. An optional field trip to collect seeds will follow in the afternoon.
Volunteers of all abilities are invited to participate in this project. The bulk of the initial seed collection effort will occur this fall when the weather gets cooler (we can hope).
The seeds collected will be used for several purposes:
- Dispersal in and reseeding of the Cumberland Forest.
- Addition to the Kew Millennium Seed Bank “Seeds of Success” project, a partnership between the Kew Gardens (England) and several US groups, ranging from the New York Parks and Recreation, New England Wildflower society, the North Carolina and Chicago Botanical Gardens plus several others (11 partners total so far). The Cumberland Trail Scenic Trail would have its own collecting team with seed going to the USDA storage facility in Fort Collins for small collections and larger quantities sent to Kew as part of the Millennium Seed Bank. These seeds would be preserved and saved as “insurance” against possible blights or extinction. This is the only such effort in the state of Tennessee.
- Direct seeding by Dayton Garden Club volunteers.
You may call Terri Ballinger, Seasonal Interpretive Ranger for the Cumberland Trail Scenic Trail, at (423-790-8972) for more information.
Seeds of Success (SOS) was established in 2001 by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in partnership with the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew Millennium Seed Bank (MSB) to collect, conserve, and develop native plant materials for stabilizing, rehabilitating and restoring lands in the United States. The initial partnership between BLM and MSB quickly grew to include many additional partners, such as botanic gardens, arboreta, zoos, and municipalities. These SOS teams share a common protocol and coordinate seed collecting and species targeting efforts. SOS is a vital part of the Native Plant Materials Development Program.
To date, SOS has over 8,163 native seed collections in its National Collection. This material is being used for direct seeding in local restoration projects and research such as germination trials, common garden studies, and protocol establishment. Portions of each collection are also being held in long-term storage facilities for conservation.
In June of 2008, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed by the Bureau of Land Management, Chicago Botanic Garden, Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, New England Wild Flower Society, New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, North Carolina Botanical Garden, and the Zoological Society of San Diego. The MOU ratifies Seeds of Success as a national native seed collection program in the United States coordinated by BLM.