The species with the largest number of living accessions in the garden is Arctostaphylos uva-ursi.

Kinnikinnick (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi)
Photo by Anne Olsen

A single accession in our collection can be represented by a single specimen or by dozens of individuals – what makes both single accessions is the fact that each accession represents a single collection event at a single place on a particular date. Therefore, as an example: Seeds gathered on September 30, 2010 from a single population of Coyote Bush (Baccharis pilularis) growing on the southwest side of San Bruno Mountain in San Mateo County, California, and subsequently sown and grown here at the botanic garden could be considered a single accession. If seeds were collected from a particular individual with especially large leaves (or other feature) at the same time, and if these were kept separate, this collection could be considered a different accession.

The rationale behind how one chooses to apply accession numbers depends on what one wants to track and the purpose of one’s collection. Here at the Regional Parks Botanic Garden, our collection is used for scientific research, conservation, restoration, public education, and for our visitor’s enjoyment. We have more different living accessions of Kinnikinnick (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi) from wild populations in California than of any other species in our collection.

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