Oxford Long-Term Ecology Lab

Long-Term Ecology, Biodiversity Conservation, and Environmental Stewardship Technologies


Professor Kathy Willis, Co-Director of the Oxford Martin Programme on Resource Stewardship and Associate Director of the Biodiversity Institute, will present a brief history of botanical science and our changing relationship with plants, drawing upon the archive collections and scientific research at the Royal Botanical Gardens Kew.

The 25-part series – Plants: From Roots to Riches – starts on BBC Radio 4 on Monday 21 July at 1.45 p.m. Every episode will be available to download from the BBC website.

Kathy is Director of Science at Kew Gardens, one of the world’s oldest botanical institutions, with a herbarium of over seven million preserved plant specimens, and the radio series will feature unprecedented access to the rich heritage and ongoing work of scientists there. The series will begin by telling the story of how modern botany was born around the time of Kew’s establishment in 1759. It will go on to examine how subsequent changes in scientific, economic and social preoccupations have influenced our attitudes to plants – from tools to exploit for food, fuel and industry, to objects of beauty, to being an essential global resource that must be conserved.

Professor Willis introduces the series in the following clip.

 

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