I’ve spent the past two weeks on a plant taxonomy and fieldwork course at RBG, Kew. The course was excellent, but the setting was truly outstanding.
For anyone not familiar with Kew, it is probably one of the most important plant conservation institutions in the world. There’s over 30,000 species of plants in the living collection, more than 7.5 million specimens in the herbarium and a staff of world renounded scientists including botanists of all descriptions.
I’m very much going to miss exploring the Palm House over lunch, browsing the Orchid collection and searching out plants I’ve never heard of in the gardens. I’ll especially miss the enormous Redwood Grove*.
If you get the chance to visit, then go!
*OK, I know… Kew’s Redwoods aren’t enormous (here’s a scale drawing), but I haven’t managed to be sent to do fieldwork in California just yet, so they’ll have to do!
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James is a highly acclaimed public speaker, delivering keynotes, lectures and debates to a wide range of audiences including students, the public, conservation practioners and scientists. Rather than further polarizing already divisive conservation topics, James aims to explain the complexity and nuance of conservation. What we choose to do over the next five decades, will profoundly influence the diversity of life on eath for the next 5 million years. It’s never been a more important, or more exciting time to be a conservationist.
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