So, thanks to an invitation from graduate students, I was able to give a lecture in the University of Cambridge Botany School (as was) auditorium about 35 years after last listening to one there. A somewhat emotional experience. Here’s the talk, minus a cute though entirely superfluous Google Earth zoom into the Svalbard Vault because that made it too big for SlideShare.
Readers who were excited by the announcement of a new Plant Hardiness Zone Map from USDA will probably like the interactive version we’ve just been pointed to. Have fun!
Svalbard is a remote Norwegian archipelago with reindeer, Arctic foxes and only around 2,500 humans — but it is also home to a vault containing seeds for virtually every edible plant one can imagine. The mountainside Crop Trust facility has thousands of varieties of corn, rice and more, serving as a seed backup for humanity. For each crop, there’s an envelope with 500 seeds.
Nice podcast, as ever, and glad they removed the reference to coconuts in the text, originally in there with rice and corn.