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“Why a living archive of traditional ornamentals on public display? Since 2003, the Botanical Garden Selleckchem GSI-IX in Oslo has been involved in a national project, The Plant Heritage project,
coordinated by the Norwegian Genetic Resource Centre, aiming to conserve old ornamentals in Norway. Similar projects have been funded in other botanical gardens in Norway as well. Our garden has been responsible for the registration and the collecting of ornamentals throughout Southeast-Norway and has a special responsibility for the conservation of Paeonia species and cultivars. In the south-eastern part of Norway in particular, long-term experience has shown that both the wild flora and traditional ornamentals
are under threat due to SN-38 molecular weight increased urbanization (Kålås et al. 2006). In order to get public awareness of the urgent need to conserve the genetic resources represented by the old and rapidly disappearing cultivars of traditional ornamentals, the Botanical Garden in Oslo decided to display its collections of such plants 3-oxoacyl-(acyl-carrier-protein) reductase for the public in a garden called Great-granny’s Garden. People remember many of these plants from the gardens of their grandparents or their great grandparents. The garden was opened to the public in 2008. Great-granny’s Garden provides information about the collecting location and the history of each plant and on the work of the Norwegian Genetic Resource Centre. Old cultivars differ both morphologically and genetically from plants in trade today. Experience tells us that they seem to be hardy and long-lived and are mostly easy to grow. Nevertheless, they are rapidly disappearing due to new trends in horticulture, neglect by garden owners, construction of new houses in old gardens, and general urbanization. Horticultural experience has shown that most cultivars do not breed true through seeds and therefore cannot be conserved as seeds in a seed bank. They must be kept as clones in a living archive.