Conservation & Research

The Santa Barbara Botanic Garden’s mission is to conserve California native plants and habitats for the health and well-being of people and the planet. Since the 1930s, staff members of the Garden have developed and maintained an intimate knowledge of the California flora, with an emphasis on the plants and vegetation communities of California’s Central Coast and the offshore islands. Today, we take a comprehensive approach to its conservation from genes to ecosystems, with comprehensive plant systematics, rare plant conservation, community ecology, and habitat restoration functions. This allows us to more thoroughly tackle the conservation challenges of our day, such as habitat loss and fragmentation, invasive species, and pollinator decline. Our work falls in four categories: 1) Understand the nature and evolution of California’s plant diversity, 2) Protect the region’s rarest plant species, 3) Conserve and Restore Central Coast habitats and food webs, and 4) Advocate for the conservation of California’s native plants – and for biodiversity as a whole, of which native plants are the foundation.

We are members of Botanic Gardens Conservation International. BGCI was established in 1987 to link the botanic gardens of the world in a global network for plant conservation. BGCI is an independent UK charity with its head office located at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

The Garden is a Participating Institution with the Center for Plant Conservation (CPC). CPC is a North American conservation network that works to save plants by sharing information, data and expertise, as well as facilitating the collection and stewardship of conservation collections.

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