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WGI Email Notice
Sent to members March 23, 2009

Hi all!

Here is how WGI can help move mountains! Fill Dr. Smit's mailbox (address below)! Please write and urge him that this garden be preserved.

Urgent action campaign to save a Dutch botanical garden.
Posted by Freek Vrugtman, Curator Emeritus, Royal Botanical Gardens, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

The Botanical Garden of the Vrije Universiteit (Free University) of Amsterdam, the Netherlands, is slated to be closed, giving way to an expansion of the University’s Medical Centre.
We urgently request your action to prevent this from happening.

The Hortus Botanicus, founded in 1967, covers one hectare (2.5 acres), including 1,000 sq m (about 10,800 sq ft) of greenhouses providing a range of climatic conditions. The collections exceed 6,000 taxa, including epiphytic orchids and bromeliads, the largest collection of cacti in the Netherlands with some plants being more than a century old, a bamboo collection, plants of the bible and plants of other religions, a penjing garden and a bonsai collection, container plants that are 60 to 80 years old, plants that take 30 years to produce their first flowers, a wide range of economic plants, to name but a few. Certain collections are part of the Dutch National Plant Collection, an organization comprising 18 participating botanical gardens in The Netherlands.

The Hortus is an official repository for plants confiscated under the provisions of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).

The Hortus is an active participant in the international seed exchange network.

The Hortus has an active educational programme.

The Hortus also provides a green oasis for patients of the University Medical Centre and the campus population.

For more information about the Hortus Botanicus see its web page:

Please express your concern to:

Dr René M. Smit, Chairman
Executive Board
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV Amsterdam
The Netherlands

Fax: (011 31) 20 59 85300
E-mail: rm.smit@dienst.vu.nl

Kit Knotts
Executive Director

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