Regional Floras are fundamental for understanding and conserving plants and ecosystems worldwide. With the second of two volumes of the Flora of Marquesas by Lorence and Wagner currently in print, NTBG now continues work to complete the Flora of Samoa.
Hawaiian Botanist W. Arthur Whistler (1944-2020) worked with the people and on the Flora of Samoa for nearly 50 years. A longtime collaborator and friend of NTBG since the early 1970s, Art served as the Garden’s first ethnobotanist and was also an affiliate botanist at the University of Hawaii. His collections of 4,900 flowering plant specimens are stored at the NTBG herbarium and form the backbone of the coming publication written by Whistler, Lorence, and Wagner in 2021. The Flora will include 541 native plants, 34% only found in Samoa and description of 21 new species.