Seeds banked in United Kingdom to aid Aussie bushfire recovery

Solstice Media
3 min readJun 4, 2020

Rare pea seeds are being flown back from a British bank to save a species from extinction in South Australia.

Daniel Duval, a seed biologist at the South Australian Seed Conservation Centre in Adelaide said the precious native pea seeds were collected 13 years ago from the Adelaide Hills and will be used to help revegetate land ravaged by the Australian summer bushfires.

“We’ve recalled some seeds back from the Millennium Seed Bank in the United Kingdom, they’ve been in transit in Sydney for a few weeks on their way back,” Duval said.

The international delivery is a tribute to long-term planning.

Back in 2007, more than 1000 of the clover glycine seeds were collected from the Mount Lofty Ranges that border the capital city of Adelaide and sent to the Millennium Seed Bank in Kew Gardens, London.

Duval said having the seed bank means the rare pea, that is listed nationally as vulnerable, has a fighting chance of surviving fires that ripped through the Cudlee Creek area of the Mount Lofty Ranges in December last year.

When the 250 seeds reach Adelaide, the South Australian Seed Conservation Centre biologists and ecologists from Natural Resources Adelaide and Mt Lofty will first propagate a seed orchard.