Creation of a Network of Seed Sites for In-Situ Conservation of Medicinal and Aromatic Plant Genetic Resources in Lithuania

Open access

Abstract

Twenty six seed (genetic) sites were established for long-term in-situ conservation of medicinal and aromatic plant (MAP) genetic resources in Lithuania over the period 2006–2017. The sites vary in size from 0.4 to 38.0 ha with an average of 7.2 ha. Most of the sites (73%) occur in the existing protected areas. They represent 10 of 22 physical geographical areas of Lithuania and accommodate 120 priority MAP species, which is about 89% of the national priority list. Prioritization of MAP species was based on the monographs of European Pharmacopoeia, European Medicines Agency, World Health Organization as well as German Phytotherapeutic Monographs and other regional and national medicinal plant references. A concept was followed of the dual function and perception of food as medicine, and, vice versa, an approach based on a co-evolutionary relationship between human food and medicine. It was established that only 46 priority species, or 34% of the national priority list, were represented by five and more populations, which is considered as minimum for long-term in-situ conservation. The future conservation planning efforts should focus on at least 15 unrepresented species, 49 species represented at 1–2 sites each and 25 species represented at 3–4 sites each. The MAP site network should expand by covering preferably the remaining 12 physical geographical areas of the country.

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CiteScore 2018: 0.53

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.156
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