This strategy is a call to action, highlighting the conservation steps that federal, state, and local agencies, private groups, academic institutions and others can take to help meet the six objectives of rare plant conservation. Successful implementation and conservation of Colorado’s native plant heritage is contingent upon adequate resources and funding to support the recommended actions.
Why conserve rare plants?
of our natural
• Rare plants are an irreplaceable partlosing valuableheritage.
If we lose these species, we will be scientific treasures and the potential benefits these plants might offer.
• By protecting the full diversity of life on Earth we are helping to ensure our own health and that of future generations. valuable medicines. Only 2
• Plants provide food andbeen analyzed for chemicalspercent of the world’s plants have that might be effective medicines.
are valuable indicators. Their
• Rare plantsmeasure of good stewardship persistence over time serves as a and ecosystem health. its unique color, form and fragrance,
• Each species, withbeauty of the natural landscape. contributes to the
Penland penstemon (Penstemon penlandii) © Scott Dressel-Martin
Acknowledgements: We thank the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (Native Plant Conservation Initiative) for providing primary funding for this project.
Colorado Rare Plant Conservation Initiative Partners
Betty Ford Alpine Gardens
Colorado Open Lands
The Nature Conservancy
Bureau of Land Management
Colorado State University
University of Colorado Denver
Center for Native Ecosystems
Denver Botanic Gardens
University of Colorado Herbarium
Colorado Department of Agriculture
Elliott Environmental Consulting
University of Northern Colorado
Colorado Department of Transportation
ational Center for Genetic
USDA Forest Service
Colorado Federation of Garden Clubs
Colorado Native Plant Society
Colorado Natural Areas Program
Colorado Natural Heritage Program
Natural Resources Conservation Service
Rocky Mountain Society of
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
We thank all of the RPCI partners for providing additional funding and/or in-kind services.
Neely, B., S. Panjabi, E. Lane, P. Lewis, C. Dawson, A. Kratz, B. Kurzel, T. Hogan, J. Handwerk, S. Krishnan, J. Neale, and N. Ripley. 2009.
Colorado Rare Plant Conservation Strategy. Developed by the Colorado Rare Plant Conservation Initiative. The Nature Conservancy,
Boulder, Colorado. 117 pp.
Colorado Natural Heritage Program. 2008. Biodiversity Tracking and Conservation System (BIOTICS).
Colorado State University, Ft. Collins.
Stein, B.A. and K. Gravuer. 2008. Hidden in Plain Sight: The Role of Plants in State Wildlife Action Plans.
NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia. 28 pp.
Mancos milkvetch (Astragalus humillimus)
© Al Schneider, www.swcoloradowildflowers.com
C olorado R are P lant
C onservation Strategy
Plants have too long been hidden in plain sight. The prospect of continued threats to the nation’s plant life, coupled with the large proportion of the flora already at risk, argues that now is the time to bring plants out from the background, and to put the conservation needs of our nation’s flora squarely into view. - Stein and Gravuer,
The Colorado Rare Plant Conservation Initiative (RPCI)
A partnership of 22 public agencies, private organizations and academic institutions has developed the first statewide strategy to direct and coordinate conservation efforts for Colorado’s imperiled plants and their habitats. The Rare Plant Conservation
Strategy represents a collective vision for conservation in Colorado, emphasizing a proactive approach to ensure the long-term stewardship and survival of the state’s rarest plants. The strategy will enable concerned partners to advance urgently…