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The Role of Botanical Gardens in the Conservation of Cactaceae

Over 75% of all species of cacti are in decline, largely because of global environmental changes (GEC), including climate change. Mitigating the impacts of GEC on cacti will require a coordinated effort that combines conservation, research, and education. Botanical gardens are uniquely positioned to lead such an effort because their living collections and programs focus on conservation and research. A coordinated network of botanical gardens—with living collections serving as experimental gardens—could become a crucial hub for studying the impacts of climate change on cacti. A network of botanical gardens could open previously untapped funding avenues to support the research, education, and conservation of cacti and provide resources for underfunded botanical gardens in Latin America.