Fifth of the worlds plants at risk

A new study has shown the extent to which plant life is endangered around the world.

According to the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS), the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) report showed that approximately 20 per cent of the Earth’s known plant species are at risk.

The four-year analysis of the world’s 380,000 known species showed that plants are even more at risk of habitat loss and other dangers than mammals or birds.

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew experts and IUCN team member Steve Bachman explained that the study gives garden and greenhouse enthusiasts an idea of the sort of pressure plants are under.

"For the first time we have a real picture of what’s happening to plants across the world," he said.

The research revealed that some of the plants on the IUCN Red List may now be extinct, while others are more at threat than previously thought.

In other news, the RHS revealed that young gardeners on the Isle of Man and in Fareham, Hampshire, have been recognised as part of the 2010 Britain in Bloom contest.