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01 Dec 2020

BGANZ partner with PlantSnap and BGCI

Botanic Gardens Australia and New Zealand (BGANZ) are thrilled to partner with PlantSnap and Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI) on a global citizen scientist project, creating possibly the world’s largest geo-located plant photos database.” – Chris Russell, BGANZ President

Dubbed “Shazam” for plants, with already over 650,000 plants in a searchable open-source database, translated into 37 languages, PlantSnap Mobile App, uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning Technology to gather data from users, currently identifying over 103K types of plants worldwide.

With partners like BGANZ, I truly believe we can make a significant and lasting impact on the planet through our global citizen scientist project – mapping the location, tracking the blooming and migration patterns over the years as the climate changes, and assessing the health of every known plant species on Earth by 2022.” – Eric Ralls, CEO and Founder

To train the PlantSnap Mobile App AI in recognition of Australian plants, PlantSnap is looking to BGANZ, Botanic Gardens and citizen scientists across Australia and New Zealand to simply encourage as many people as we can reach, to Snap photos of plants with PlantSnap everywhere they go, and as often as possible.

We’re the first mobile app to harness machine learning technology to recognize specific plant species—and the more you use it, the smarter the app becomes. As a result, we’ve built the largest, most comprehensive plant database in the world with over 316,000 species and 90 million images in our database.”- Eric Ralls, CEO and Founder

Gardens can add unique information to PlantSnap about the plants held in their living collections, creating excellent nature reference source, a new level of immersion and education (recommended from ages 9+). A conduit between botanists, horticulturalists and those who wish to learn about plants, and get detailed information about the plant’s taxonomy, habitat, care, and uses. Connecting and inspiring visitors to develop a stronger connection to plants in their everyday lives.

Plantsnap’s rich collection of crowdsourced photos and robust reporting (which includes visitor demographic and behavioural data) provides invaluable insights for Garden’s experience and engagement teams, tracking who is coming to their garden, popular collections and plant connections, identify paths and which part of the garden people are visiting (or not).

Beyond use in the Gardens, content generated by app users, for example, on wild native plants, naturalised weeds, and home garden plants, can add to data collection for environmental monitoring or scientific research. This creates the opportunity to use the app not just as an ID tool but to track changes in flowering time and plant movements (range reductions, weed spread).

It’s never been more important to track plant species worldwide. This is a chance to create a massive, global contingent of citizen scientists. Let’s empower garden visitors worldwide to become citizen scientists in their own communities.” BGCI

BGANZ will receive revenue from EVERY Plantsnap download in Australia and New Zealand commencing December 1, 2020. The revenue will assist in funding plant initiatives with member gardens. Furthermore, every download of the app will provide funds towards BGCI’s Global Botanic Garden Fund, which aims to drive plant conservation in botanic gardens by providing grants to small botanic gardens in developing countries and biodiversity hotspots.

The more PlantSnap app downloads generated by this partnership, the more plant conservation projects can be funded, locally and globally.

The BGANZ Partnership with Plantsnap commences December 1, 2020. Any member garden wanting to find out more about the Plantsnap App and how their garden can sign up, please contact Sam Moon, BGANZ Marketing and Communications Officer media@bganz.org,au

To find out more and how to get involved visit the BGANZ PlantSnap Initiative page.

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