Conservation of Magnolia sinostellata, China

The Global Trees Campaign is working in conjunction with Fairylake Botanical Garden to produce an integrated conservation programme for Magnolia sinostellata, a Critically Endangered tree.

Described in 1989, Magnolia sinostellata is known from only three locations in southern Zhejiang province. Naturally occurring in mixed coniferous and deciduous forests at an elevation of 700-1,250 m, wild M. sinostellata specimens have been widely sought after as ornamental plants given the species attractive habit. This has significantly contributed to the populations’ decline. Limited fruiting has been observed in the wild. The species has been assessed as Endangered (IUCN Red List 2015.2).

This new project aims to develop an integrated conservation programme for this species, including propagation trials via seed and vegetative means, establishment of ex situ collections representative of all three locations, and in situ population reinforcement plantings.

In the first year of this project, the Global Trees Campaign aims to enhance the success of propagation techniques and implement a series of training courses for representatives from local communities and forestry agencies to strengthen horticultural skills. This will form the basis for ex situ conservation and reinforcement programmes for wild populations in subsequent years.

Credit: Professor Shouzhou Zhang/Fairylake Botanic Garden

Did you know?

Monkey puzzle wood can be used to reconstruct past climatic conditions.  This is done by measuring growth rings which go back many hundreds of years.