Rare Plants & Conservation
Working to protect rare plants and their habitats throughout New England
Nearly one-fifth of the region's 3,000 plant species are in danger of disappearing.
The risk of extinction is as real for the beautiful Plymouth Gentian as it is for the Humpback Whale or the Peregrine Falcon. Habitat loss from development, invasive species encroachment, and changes in the climate threaten many plant species in the region. As the oldest plant conservation organization in the United States, New England Wild Flower Society is working to protect more than 500 endangered plant species.
Visitors to The Society's Garden of Rare and Endangered plants at its botanic garden, Garden in the Woods, will encounter plants seldom seen growing wild in New England. Many are so inconspicuous that you could walk right by without ever noticing them. Some exist in the wild only in specific, limited habitats. Others grow in such limited numbers you might never encounter them, unless you knew where to look.
New England Wild Flower Society strives to raise awareness about the tenuous existence of so many New England native plant species and engage in actions to protect these species. The New England Plant Conservation Program Task Force Members and Plant Conservation Volunteers, spearheaded by The Society with information from the State Natural Heritage Programs, monitor endangered species populations and participate in activities to remove invasive plant species.