Why the extinction of nearly 600 plant species in 250 years is a big deal

Why the extinction of nearly 600 plant species in 250 years is a big deal

Mary Jo DiLonardo

Photo: Rebecca Cairns-Wicks

Many people can name a bird or a mammal that has become extinct in recent centuries, but few can name a plant that has suffered the same fate. Researchers at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and Stockholm University recently found that at least 571 plant species have gone extinct since 1750 — and that’s twice the number of all bird, mammal and amphibian extinctions combined, according to a Kew media release…