Leicestershire and Rutland rare plant project

The University of Leicester Botanic Garden has announced plans to establish a plant genebank on the rare and scarce flowering plants of our two counties.

Targeted will be rare and scarce plants listed in the The Flora of Leicestershire and Rutland: Checklist and Rare Plant Register by Michael Jeeves (Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust, Head of Conservation). These total 210 species, plus as many of the 136 species classed ‘not recently recorded’ that can be re-discovered.

The project will contribute to the botanic garden’s focus on biodiversity and its conservation and, on a local level, complement the largely international work of the Millenium Seedbank based at Wakehurst Place. Preliminary collections of some species have already been made.

Michael has been Head of Conservation at the Trust for 24 years and is also the Botanical Society of the British Isles’ plant recorder for Leicestershire and Rutland.

The Flora of Leicestershire and Rutland: Checklist and Rare Plant Register is an A5 softback book lists all of the wild plants that have been recorded in the two counties since recording began nearly 300 years ago. It has 144 pages, including four pages of colour plates, an introduction addressing issues such as the conservation of the flora, a bibliography, gazetteer and index of English names. The main text consists of an alphabetical list of plants, with concise details of status, habitat and frequency. 

It is available by sending a cheque for £6.50 (£5.00 plus £1.50 p&p) made payable to Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust to the Trust’s main office at The Old Mill, 9 Soar Lane, Leicester, LE3 5DF.

Illustration: Green-winged orchid (JW/LRWT)

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