Researchers Reunite Rare, Long-Separated Plants

2:06 PM, Oct 1, 2012   |    comments
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ELBERTON, Ga. (AP) - Scientists say an experiment in botanical match-making has succeeded deep in the woods of northeast Georgia.

For years, male and female plants of dwarf sumac, one of Georgia's rarest plants, had been separated by miles of roads and civilization.

The Athens Banner-Herald reports that the plant had dwindled to just two populations sometime in the 20th century - a small group of females in Newton County, and a lonely group of males in the Broad River Management Area on a bluff overlooking the Broad River.

In February 2010, just in time for Valentine's Day, botanists working with the Georgia Plant Conservation Alliance reunited the long-lost lovers, tenderly planting about 20 female plants near the males in Elbert County.

Botanists say they are seeing some success, and the population is rebounding.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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