A Delegation from NARC, Jordanian Universities, and Local Associations visited the Royal Botanic Garden and Debbin Reserve in Jerash

A delegation from the National Centre for Agricultural Research(NARC), Jordanian universities, and representatives of local associations visited the Royal Botanic Garden and Debbin Forest Reserve in Jerash Governorate, as part of the Cross Border Living laboratories for Agroforestry(LININGAGRO) project.

Dr. Salam Ayoub, Director of the Horticultural Research Dept. at NARC, and the project coordinator, stated that this visit aimed to identify the Royal Botanic Garden and the Debbin Forest Reserve facilities, as well as exchange experiences among researchers to achieve sustainable agricultural development.

During the visit, Dr. Mustafa Shdaifat, manager of projects and programs at the Royal Botanic Garden, presented the activities implemented and the accomplishments of the botanical garden in terms of biodiversity, rare native plants protection, seed conservation, and breeding, rangeland rehabilitation, in addition to environmental awareness, research conducting and sustainable forest management.

Shdaifat added that the “Jordan Plant Register” and the “Red List of Extinction-Threatened- Species are the most important publications issued by the garden. Not to mention the Botanical Garden’s role in supporting the community, building capacities, and providing various sources of income. This was followed by a tour of the National Botanical Nurseries, the National Herbarium, and the Seed Bank to get familiar with the garden plant and plant diversity database.

On the other hand, during a visit Debbin Forests Reserve of the Royal Scientific Society (RSS), the participants familiarized themselves with reserve activities in terms of various forest tree conservation such as oaks, pine trees, and wild olives, pistachios, maple trees as well as endangered plants. They also identified the Reserve's role in supporting the local community through the implementation of multiple productive projects run by the RSSN, as well as regulating grazing intensity on the Reserve.

It should be noted that Debbin Forest Reserve ecosystem supports the existence of 517 plant species and the reserve embraces at least 17 endangered species, such as the Persian squirrel and many important species at the global biodiversity level.

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