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We value, conserve and
rich plant heritage, and
being a national botanic
gardens means that we
have a responsibility
to inform and link people
to native ora
Atrip to the capital is not complete
without a trail of the national
institutions -- the galleries, museums
and landmarks that put this city on the map.
But one institution that is o en overlooked
is the Australian National Botanic Gardens.
"When you think about holidays and school
visits to Canberra most of the time people only
go to the Australian War Memorial, Parliament
House or Questacon, but we like to think that
the ANBG is a great place to visit too," ANBG
executive director Judy West says.
"It s just a wonderful and inspirational place
West says it s important for a city the size of
Canberra to have a botanic gardens, not just
for visitation but for awareness and education.
"We value, conserve and appreciate
Australia s rich plant heritage, and being a
national botanic gardens means that we have
a responsibility to inform and link people to
Australian native ora, providing a site for
education, recreation, inspiration, research,
conservation and science," she says.
O cially opened on October 20, 1970 by
former prime minister John Gorton, the
ANBG is located on the eastern slopes of Black
For more than 40 years the gardens has been
growing, as it studies and promotes Australian
plants. It is home to the largest living collection
of Australian plant species in the world and
plays an essential role in conserving Australia s
ora for future generations.
e gardens collection has more than 6300
species representing nearly one-third of
Australia s known native plants and has more
than 78,000 plants spread over 35 hectares of
Plants are grouped according to their
geographical origins, Indigenous uses or with
members of their botanical family. Some areas
display Australia s rare and endangered plants
or are grouped together for their horticultural
Some landscapes and gardens at the
ANBG include; the Red Centre garden,
which showcases a selection of plants from
central Australia s iconic and dominant plant
communities; the Asteraceae garden, which
features a number of daisy species not grown
before at ANBG; Rainforest Gully, a cool and
tranquil escape that is one of the gardens most
popular attractions; Eucalypt lawn, where
you can enjoy a picnic beneath more than 70
species of Australian trees and; the Display
Glasshouse, which highlights hundreds of
species of tropical and subtropical plants.
e gardens also has a strong reputation for
scienti c and horticultural research. It makes
an important contribution to the collection of
seeds for preservation, utilising a seed bank for
germination, study and reintroduction of seeds
into their native habitats.
" at is partly why the gardens is located
right next to the CSIRO and ANU. It was
designed as a scienti c garden, and in the last
few years we ve drawn it back to that scienti c
place," West says.
e gardens also provides education
JOSEPHINE HUYNH discovers
the Australian National Botanic
Gardens' important contribution
to education, recreation,
conservation and science.
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