Plants are Not Optional

Plant life is increasingly challenged by issues related to climate change and urbanization.

In fact, according to a report from London’s Kew Botanical Gardens, it is estimated that one out of every five of the world’s plant species is at risk of extinction.We are combating these and other threats on numerous fronts. By collecting and documenting a historical record of plant life on earth, the Herbarium documents and studies how and why it changes. Our research staff, faculty and students are vital to the protection, conservation and propagation of plant life. By sharing our knowledge through education and publication, we help our fellow citizens understand the importance of plants to their own lives. And, as a member of Seeds of Success and the Center for Plant Conservation, we collect and bank the seeds of both common and endangered plants in our region. In addition to guarding these irreplaceable genetic resources against extinction, this repository can be used to restore ecosystems ravaged by natural catastrophes. In the wake of Hurricane Sandy in 2012, seeds from our collection were used to help restore dunes, wetlands, coastal forests and other affected areas.

As habitats in North Carolina and around the world face greater and greater challenges, we are needed as never before.

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