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Dr Mark Clements receives prestigious Westonbirt Orchid Medal

Dr Mark Clements, our colleague from the Centre for Australian National Biodiversity Research (a joint initiative between the Australian National Botanic Gardens and CSIRO), was awarded the prestigious Westonbirt Orchid Medal last week. Awarded by the Royal Horticulture Society in the United Kingdom, the annual Westonbirt Orchid Medal is awarded for scientific, literary or other outstanding personal achievement in connection with orchids. With a career spanning 40 years, and the discovery of 250 new Australian orchid species to his name, Mark has made a huge contribution to the field of orchid science, publishing over 100 papers on their biology, systematics and evolution. His passion and commitment to orchids certainly makes him a deserving recipient of the medal.

Caladenia discoidea (Photo: ANBG)

Caladenia discoidea, an Australian orchid species (Photo: ANBG)

During the 1980s he worked at another of our Partner institutions, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, contributing to the effort to save Cypripedium calceolus (lady's slipper orchid) from the brink of extinction. Thanks to Mark’s efforts this species is now growing more widely and its seed is safeguarded in Kew’s Millennium Seed Bank.

We want to congratulate Mark on his deserved win of the Westonbirt Orchid Medal and acknowledge his outstanding contribution to orchid conservation in Australia and around the world.

Dr Mark Clements (Photo: ANBG)

Dr Mark Clements in the ANBG Orchid House (Photo: ANBG)