Seeds of Success: Cultivating 20 Years of Plant Conservation

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Anna Lindquist, Amanda Carr , Regan Murray , Peggy Olwell

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Seeds of Success (SOS) is a national native seed collection program in the US, led by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in partnership with the USDA Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, USDA Agricultural Research Service and many non-federal partners. SOS is the first step in the native plant materials development process to increase the quality and quantity of native seed available for restoring and supporting resilient ecosystems. SOS collections of wildland native seed are used for seed research and development such as germination trials, common garden studies, and protocol establishment. Additional uses include germplasm conservation, seed production, and ecosystem restoration. Portions of each collection are also held in long-term storage facilities for conservation. SOS was established in 2001 by the BLM and includes many partners, such as botanic gardens, arboreta, zoos, and municipalities. All SOS teams share a common protocol to coordinate seed collecting and species targeting efforts. To date, SOS has made more than 26,000 native seed collections comprising 5,800 unique taxa from 43 states across the US. In 2015, BLM received a $3.5 million mitigation award because of Hurricane Sandy to collect seed in coastal habitats from Virginia to Maine. Current SOS priorities include ecoregional programs in the Great Basin, Colorado Plateau, and Mojave Desert. Efforts are also underway to expand partnerships in the Southeastern U.S. to preserve the incredible plant biodiversity of the region.

Resource Type:
Conference Presentation, SER2021

Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program