For some species, traditional methods of seed storage result in seed death. This may be because the seeds, such as those produced by many rainforest species, have a high water content when mature. Trying to dry the seeds results in death, while freezing the seeds with a lot of 'free' water is also inevitably fatal. Further, there are species that can be dried, but then do not (for unknown reasons) survive cold storage. This often includes rainforest species that come from naturally warmer environments where plants never experience and therefore cannot cope with low temperatures.
The loss of seeds in storage is not acceptable and therefore modifications to traditional seedbanking protocols are required or alternative methods used that allow for the successful storage of plant tissue. Modifications made to seedbanking protocols may include the use of cool storage (4oC) rather than cold storage, at least until alternative methods can be trialed. Alternative methods, such as those described below, can utilise vegetative material making them applicable to plants from which seed cannot be obtained.