TorreyaKeepers Project

This conservation project started as an outgrowth of the Florida Torreya Tree of Life conference in March 2018 to aid in the recovery of Florida Torreya (Torreya Taxifolia).  This critically endangered tree species has been in decline for decades and all observed trees are infected with a canker disease now attributed to a novel Fusarium species, possibly introduced from Asia by the horticultural or shipping industry (Smith et al. 2011).

We are working with private landowners to locate and document the condition of remaining wild trees. 
We are also partnering with Atlanta Botanical Garden to collect stem cuttings for offsite safeguarding to conserve the genetic diversity remaining for this species.

In 2019-2020, we contacted over 300 private landowners requesting permission to survey their properties for Florida Torreya and to work with them to conserve this unique tree species.

With your support, we can continue this important work to save Florida Torreya.

Bill Boothe collecting data on a Torreya tree (photo by Leigh Brooks)

 Helen Roth (left) and Scott Copeland (right) are shown setting up a cage around a Torreya tree to protect it from deer browse (photo by Leigh Brooks).

 Each tree receives a unique # tag (photo by Leigh Brooks).

References

Smith, J. A., O’Donnell, K., Mount, L. L., Shin, K., Peacock, K., Trulock, A., Spector, T., Cruse-Sanders, J., and Determann, R. 2011. A novel Fusarium species causes a canker disease of the critically endangered conifer, Torreya taxifolia. Plant Dis. 95:633-639

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