Thanks to Tatyana Livshultz, we have a translation of the interview with the members of the expert scientific commission that was appointed by the Russian Government Department of Economic Development to examine and report on the living collections at the Pavlovsk Experimental Station.
Here’s Tatyana’s summary of the main findings:
1) The station holds extremely valuable (from scientific, agronomic, and historical perspective) living collections particularly the stone fruits (which was assembled beginning 80-85 years ago by the Vavilov Institute) and currants (which is a younger collection).
2) Some of these collections (particularly the stone fruit) are in very bad condition (old trees at risk of death) and need urgently to be renewed (re-grafted, re-propagated); others (e.g. the currants) are relatively well-maintained. The brambles are overgrown by grasses.
3) The collection has not been well-documented or well-maintained. They recommend a change of management/administration at the Pavlovsk Experiment Station, and additional resources made available for maintenance and repropagation of the collection.
4) They recommend that the station be maintained. The 13 hectares where the fruit collections are currently planted must be maintained, an additional 20 hectares are needed to renew and re-propagate the collection while maintaining the original plantings. Additional areas that do not hold collections (e.g. a wetland) or are currently planted with field crops (grains or potatoes) are identified as unnecessary to protect and may be developed.
5) The commission recommends against moving the fruit collection, considered too risky (too great a risk of loss of accessions).
Well, that sounds pretty hopeful to me.1