Our Conservation Programs
At The New York Botanical Garden we are committed to the conservation of plants and their habitats worldwide.
The world's plants are threatened by many forces, such as destruction or severe modification of their habitats, competition with invasive species, and climate change. In fact, some 50,000 square miles of the world's forests--an area about the size of New York state--are lost each year. Tropical rain forest plants are especially at risk.
The Botanical Garden uses different strategies to conserve plants and their habitats. When possible, we try to conserve plants where they occur in nature. This involves protecting plants in natural areas, such as parks, or through sustainable management of plant resources in areas where people live.
When the threat to plant species is too great for conservation in nature, we work to get those species into cultivation at botanical gardens around the world in order to learn more about their biology and how to grow them. Then, it is a goal to reintroduce these rescued species back into nature when suitable, secure habitat can be located.
To inform its conservation strategies and policy recommendations, we use cutting-edge research tools to gather data on species' evolutionary relationships, population structures, and geographic distributions in relation to protected areas and endangered habitats. For example, our research in Brazil's coastal forests led to the acquisition of land to form the largest state park in the state of Bahia, Parque Estadual Serra do Conduru.