flowers Photo by Jennifer Stratton, BLM Eastern States Meadowood

About Native Plants

The BLM conserves, maintains, and restores native plant communities through its land use planning and land management activities.

Under its “multiple-use” and “sustained yield” mandate, the BLM manages specific attributes of many native plant communities through its Weed Management, Healthy Landscapes, Forest, Range, Riparian, Wildlife, Threatened and Endangered Species, Soil, Water and Air Management Programs.

Why Native Plants are Important 

Native plant diversity provides essential ecosystem services including the regulation of carbon, energy, and water cycles. Native plant species help to buffer the impacts of climate change and are essential for future responses. Actions to conserve and restore native plant diversity, including having appropriate seed resources readily available, are important strategic components of climate change adaptation.

Plant Conservation 

The Plant Conservation Alliance (PCA) is a public-private partnership of organizations that share the same goal: to protect native plants by ensuring that native plant populations and their communities are maintained, enhanced, and restored. 

PCA is a collaborative partnership among 12 federal agency Members and over 300 non-federal Cooperators. PCA Members and Cooperators work collaboratively to solve the problems of native plant conservation and native habitat restoration, ensuring the sustainability of our ecosystems. In 2015 PCA developed the National Seed Strategy for Rehabilitation and Restoration to address widespread shortages of native seed.  The depth and strength of PCA is in the scientific expertise, networking, and the ability to pool resources to protect, conserve, and restore our national plant heritage for generations to come. 

To accomplish its goals, PCA has a framework that is carried out by a Federal Committee, a Non-Federal Cooperators Committee and five working groups.

PCA Federal Committee

The PCA Federal Committee works to identify and recommend, as appropriate, priority conservation needs for native plants and their habitats, and coordinate implementation of programs for addressing those needs. It serves as a forum for coordination and implementation of a national native plant conservation program, consisting of public education and outreach, research, conservation actions, native plant materials development coordination, databases and information exchange, and international programs. The PCA Federal Committee is chaired by Peggy Olwell, Plant Conservation Program Lead for the Bureau of Land Management.

The 12 Federal Agencies that make up the Federal Committee are the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Land Management, Federal Highway Administration, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution, United States Botanic Garden, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Research Service, USDA Forest Service, USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and U.S. Geological Survey. 
 

PCA Non-Federal Cooperator Committee

The PCA Non-Federal Cooperator Committee represents the interests and ideas of various organizations such as botanic gardens, universities, educational groups, state agencies, businesses, professional societies, trade associations, native plant societies, and garden clubs. The PCA Non-Federal Cooperator Committee partners with the PCA Federal Committee and others to advance plant conservation, promote native plant community restoration, and conduct botanical conservation science. The PCA Non-Federal Cooperator Committee is chaired by Dr. Kayri Havens, Ecology and Conservation Senior Scientist at the Chicago Botanic Garden.

Learn more at http://www.plantconservationalliance.org/

Get Involved

PCA BI-MONTHLY MEETING
The Plant Conservation Alliance holds bi-monthly meetings as an open forum for anyone interested or working in plant conservation. The meeting takes place in the Washington DC metropolitan area and is available remotely as a live webinar. There is a roundtable for attendees to share relevant events, a presentation and discussion on plant conservation related work by a guest speaker, as well as updates from each of the PCA working groups and committees. Regular attendees include representatives from the PCA Federal agencies and from Cooperating organizations; however anyone is welcome to attend this meeting. 

For information on upcoming meetings visit http://www.plantconservationalliance.org/meetings
Or, join the PCA listserv to learn about upcoming PCA meetings as well as announcements and discussions on native plant conservation. 

JOIN
Organizations, businesses, and local or state government divisions can join the Plant Conservation Alliance by filling out an online application 

For Federal agencies, joining in the Plant Conservation Alliance's Federal Committee requires signing the Memorandum of Understanding.

Contact Lindsey Riibe at lriibe@blm.gov for more information.