The Australian PlantBank located at the Australian Botanic Garden at Mount Annan in Western Sydney is one of the most biodiverse places on the planet. It holds seeds from many of the 25,000 or so plant species that grow in Australia with 57% of NSW threatened species stored safely within the incredible facility. It’s how seeds and other plant material are stored that is so fascinating and the focus of the fifth episode of Branch Out, No Plants No Future.
You’ll start off in the bush on a seed collecting expedition with Graeme Errington and then you’ll venture into the various labs at the Australian PlantBank with Dr Karen Sommerville for the complex storage process options. Scientists such as Graeme and Karen are experimenting with new ways to protect the future of plants (and all life that depends on them) using x-ray machines, growing parts of plants in agar jelly and storing material in liquid nitrogen.
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