|Supported by a gift by Dr. Lin Lougheed (through Montgomery Botanical Center) a team of botanists and horticulturists from the National Botanic Garden of the Dominican Republic (Mr. Teodoro Clase), Montgomery Botanical Center (Dr. Chad Husby), and Fairchild (Mr. Jason Lopez and Dr. Brett Jestrow) performed extensive field work across the Dominican Republic between 7-17 October. The main aim of this project was to collect material for the living collections of these three botanic gardens. This material will be valuable for research, education, and gardening purposes. The team collected living material for over 100 accessions which are currently being cultivated in the greenhouses of the botanic gardens. Image on left: Salcedoa mirabilis a Critically Endangered sunflower belonging to a genus endemic in the Dominican Republic. Images on bottom: top (from left to right Dr. Chad Husby, Mr. Jason Lopez, Mr. Teodoro Clase, Dr. Brett Jestrow, and Mr. Francisco Rodriguez (Head of the Botany Department of the National Botanic Garden of the Dominican Republic); bottom left: Dr. Brett Jestrow and Mr. Jason Lopez collecting plant material of Salcedoa; bottom right: view of the primary locality of Coccothrinax boschiana.|
Between October 17-20, William Cinea, Director of the Botanic Garden of Cayes (Haiti) visited us. During this visit he was hosted by Dr. Javier Francisco-Ortega (FIU-Fairchild Faculty). The main aim of this visit was to review the results of a project pertinent to conservation biology of the Critically Endangered palm Pseudophoenix lediniana. This species is restricted to a single population in southern Haiti and it is being funded by the Mohamed Bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund. During this visit Mr. Cinea also met with our herbarium curator Dr. Brett Jestrow and with colleagues from the Montgomery Botanical Center (Dr. Chad Husby) and from FIU College of Arts and Sciences (Dr. Mike Maunder, currently Interim Director of The Kampong Gardens from the National Tropical Botanic Garden). Our gratitude to The Kampong Gardens for arranging lodging for William in its guest house. Image below: left (Dr. Brett Jestrow), right (Mr. William Cinea).