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Inside the Hawaiian Seed Bank Figuring Out How to Store the Rarest Plants on Earth

"Visits to the seed bank at the National Tropical Botanical Garden begin with removing your shoes. The seed bank, on the Hawaiian island of Kaua’i, is housed alongside NTBG’s collection of 80,000 dried plant specimens and rare botany books in a building that can withstand Category 5 hurricanes. It does have a vulnerability, though: pests. Funguses or bugs — like booklice — hiding in a visitor’s soles could threaten the collections. For the same reason, anything that’s brought into the building — office supplies, furniture, books — is frozen for two weeks."

Read the complete story by NTBG Environmental Journalism Program alumna, Alessandra Potenza, published on The Verge.

Photos: Alessandra Potenza/The Verge

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