Australian National Botanic Gardens

Friday 3 December 2021

One of Australia’s rarest trees was highlighted during the launch of the Strategy for the Australian Native Seed Sector at the Australian National Botanic Gardens in November. 

The strategy provides new hope for millions of native plants such as the Mount Imlay Mallee tree, a eucalypt that was almost wiped out by the Black Summer bushfires.  

The eucalypt is extremely rare and the only 55 adult trees growing on the summit of Mount Imlay on the NSW south coast were all but wiped out by the devastating Black Summer bushfires. There is hope these will re-sprout but it will be many years before they produce seeds again. 

The Australian National Botanic Gardens has two of these extremely rare trees growing in its living collection, the only two Mt Imlay Mallees known to exist in ex situ collections anywhere in the world.  

Visitors can explore the gardens and see the two very special trees which serve as a reminder of the importance of protecting Australia’s native flora. 

The new Strategy for the Australian Native Seed Sector provides a 10-year road map to improve the management and use of Australia’s native seeds. The strategy will assist in galvanising action to safeguard our native flora, enabling Australia to proactively prepare for the threat of future natural disasters. 

The Strategy’s aim is to ‘support a sustainable supply of high-quality native seed to underpin landscape restoration and biodiversity conservation’. It will guide the direction and growth of the entire sector, including organisations like the Australian Seed Bank Partnership as it continues to collect, germinate, propagate and store seeds from more than 200 priority bushfire-affected native plant species. 

The Strategy was developed through Greening Australia’s Project Phoenix, a $5 million project funded by the Australian Government. The development of the Strategy relied on input from across the sector including first nation’s communities, businesses, community groups, government, and related industries such as mining and agriculture.  

Read the Strategy:  

Further information on the Australian Seed Bank Partnership: