Rhagor - Opening our national collections

The rarest plants in Wales

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Scientists at Amgueddfa Cymru have been researching the possibility that the Perennial Centuary (Centaurium scilloides) colonised Britain by sea.

For its size, Wales has a rich flora. The variation in rock types and landscapes from the limestones of the Gower Peninsular to the mud-stones and volcanic rocks of Snowdonia support many different and special plants. Wales is home to a number of rare plants. Some rare species are endemic to Wales and occur nowhere else in the world, such as Ley's Whitebeam or the Black Mountain Hawkweed. Other rare plants occur elsewhere but in the British Isles only occur in Wales, such as the Snowdon Lily or Yellow Whitlow Grass. Others are rare on an international basis, such as Perennial Centaury or Wild Asparagus.

The Welsh Rare Plants Project aims to help conserve threatened Welsh plants by providing a firm scientific basis for their conservation. The advice is provided by collecting information on the size and location of rare plant populations, assessing threats to their survival, collecting ecological information, analysing genetic variation and making recommendations for habitat management.

It is a joint project between Amgueddfa Cymru — National Museum Wales and the National Botanic Garden of Wales, with part funding from the Countryside Council for Wales.

Click on the thumbnails below for information on each rare plant: