Montgomery Botanical Center participated in the 2009 American Public Gardens Association conference, held in St. Louis. Dr. Patrick Griffith presented two talks on MBC living collections management, and moderated a session on Conservation and Research at botanic gardens.
The first MBC talk highlighted the role of geographic analysis in collections development. Dr. Michael Dosmann of the Arnold Arboretum organized the session, focusing on new directions in collections management. Working with MBC Cycad Biologist Michael Calonje, Patrick presented examples of how organizing collections information on maps leads to efficient planning, effective conservation—and even new botanical discoveries.
The second MBC talk was part of a session organized by Dr. Andrea Kramer of BGCI, which considered the conservation value of living plant collections. Recent collaborative research between MBC, Florida International University, and Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden is designed to address this question. Patrick presented the results of these studies, along with new cost models designed to optimize the effectiveness of ex situ conservation investment by botanic gardens.