Kew's first collections strategy in 170 years
The Science Collections Strategy, 2018-2028
The Science Collections at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, have been growing more or less continuously for the past 170 years. More than 8.5m specimens are housed at two sites at Kew and Wakehurst, ranging from dried plant and fungal material preserved on sheets of paper, to seeds in jars stored at -20°C, to DNA samples stored in freezers at -80°C.
But what and from where to collect has been "largely driven by serendipity and political trends," according to the Royal Botanic Gardens. For the past 170 years, "Kew has never to our knowledge had a collections strategy."
This strategy prioritises what this globally important institution will collect, curate and disseminate in the future.