Create your own conference schedule! Click here for full instructions

Abstract Detail

Recent Topics Posters

Fehlberg, Shannon [1], Butler, Michelle [2], Blackwell, Steve [1], Butler, Lane [1], Larson-Whittaker, Cole [1], King, Matthew [3], Williams, Frank [4], Madera, Robert [4].

Promoting plant connection and conservation through partnerships among Agencies, Gardens, Citizens, and Science Communicators.

Connecting people to plants and the scientific process is key to promoting environmental literacy and achieving desired conservation outcomes. Nature-based citizen science projects have been shown to enhance participants’ knowledge of conservation issues and increase individual conservation action. Such projects may also address the immediate need related to the ongoing crisis in botanical capacity, including severe shortages of botanists at agencies and a decline in botanical education programs. Recently, the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix, Arizona, and the Tonto National Forest, the largest National Forest in Arizona encompassing nearly 3 million acres, formed a partnership to advance the resilience and restoration of native plants on the Tonto National Forest. Scientists and botanists participating in this partnership are working to develop a focused, tractable citizen science program that will produce data immediately relevant to management and conservation of native plants and make use of customized, digital data-collection tools. Furthermore, the Desert Botanical Garden is partnering with Butler Photo to produce multi-media outreach videos aimed at raising awareness of plant diversity and conservation issues and encouraging individuals to get involved in environmental and conservation programs, including this collaborative citizen science project. Here we describe the mutual benefits of these diverse partnerships as well as our planning process, including prioritization of plant species, refinement of data collection protocols, and development of a digital data-collection tool. We also discuss our future plans for engaging diverse participants and producing multi-media training modules. By sharing our experiences, we hope to encourage other organizations to consider creation of collaborative citizen science programs to meet their data collection, engagement, and conservation goals.

Log in to add this item to your schedule

1 - Desert Botanical Garden, Research, Conservation, and Collections, 1201 North Galvin Parkway, Phoenix, AZ, 85008, USA
2 - Butler Photo,, Middletown, DE, 19709, USA
3 - Natural Heritage Program, Arizona Game and Fish Department, 5000 West Carefree Highway, Phoenix, AZ, 85086, USA
4 - Forest Service, Tonto National Forest, 2324 East McDowell Road, Phoenix, AZ, 85006, USA

science communication
citizen science
botanical capacity

Presentation Type:
Session: P, Recent Topics Posters
Location: Arizona Ballroom/Starr Pass
Date: Monday, July 29th, 2019
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: PRT016
Abstract ID:1388
Candidate for Awards:None

Copyright © 2000-2019, Botanical Society of America. All rights reserved