THE SFASU ARBORETUM WOODY AND HERBACEOUS PLANT EVALUATION PROGRAM: PLANTS WITH PROMISE

in HortScience

The mission of the SFASU Arboretum is to promote the conservation, selection, and use of the native plants of Texas and to encourage diversity in the urban landscape philosophy of the region. A decade since its inception, the 10-acre arboretum features many uncommon, unusual, and difficult-to-find species and cultivars, many deserving greater use in the region. The living collection has been acquired through botanical gardens, arboretums, private collections, the nursery industry, and expeditions. The list of promising plants that have surfaced includes many that are not easily available in the trade. The issues involved in woody and herbaceous plant evaluation include computer mapping and record keeping constraints, the long-time frame for evaluation with many woody plants, and difficulties in propagation. The arboretums's plant acquisition policy and record keeping and computer mapping system is currently tracking more than 2500 taxa in the living collection. An overview of the first decade of plant performance and a strategic plan for acquisition, propagation, evaluation, distribution, and promotion are presented.

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