The Work Group had a broad mandate. It was to define challenges, explore opportunities, and make recommendations regarding the preservation of “plant species native to the State and region,” that is, Maryland’s botanical heritage. Our native plants exist in many settings: natural areas, disturbed places like roadsides and field edges, planted landscapes and gardens, and as dried specimens in herbaria. But the cornerstone of our botanical heritage is native plants in their natural habitats.
Public support for conservation of Maryland’s botanical heritage is crucial. Public understanding of the importance of native plants and how they are threatened will be key to preserving our biodiversity and our botanical heritage.