Occurrences of Crop Wild Relatives

The in situ conservation of plant genetic resources comprises the conservation of ecosystems and natural habitats and the maintenance and recovery of viable populations of species in their natural environments (e.g. protected areas).

Searchable data on in situ occurrences of crop wild relatives was obtained from completed model and demonstration projects in the area of conservation and innovative sustainable use of biodiversity as well as from publications, from the European Plant Genetic Resources Search Catalogue (EURISCO) and from mappings carried out in the context of the Habitats Directive. The data sources are described briefly below.

Data from Model and Demonstration Projects in the Area of Conservation and Innovative Sustainable Use of Biodiversity

Development of a Reporting and Monitoring System for the In situ Conservation of Genetic Resources of Crop Wild Relatives in Brandenburg (2007 - 2010)

The project aims to contribute to the conservation, support and sustainable use of in situ plant genetic resources (PGR) in Brandenburg, Germany, by supplying transparent documentation and information, particularly with regard to crop wild relatives (CWR).


The model-based reporting infrastructure for Brandenburg is intended to provide further assistance in view of a possible introduction in other German Laender. A data base was created that can be used to meet national and international reporting obligations. Project partners were the University for Sustainable Development at Eberswalde, Department of Forest and Environment, in cooperation with the Environmental Agency of Brandenburg and the country's center of excellence, Eberswalde Forestry.

Data on 1.8 million occurrences of plant species were collected in a database, among them about 700,000 crop wild relatives with extensive descriptions. These data are now searchable via PGRDEU.

Securing the Viability of the Wild Grape Vitis vinifera L. ssp. sylvestris C.C. Gmel. in the old Rheinaue wetlands through targeted In-situ-Management (2008-2013)

The project aims at ensuring the viability of the wild grape and was carried out by the WWF-Auen-Institute and the Botanical Institute at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). The remaining diversity of wild grape should be safeguarded and used to recreate a viable, genetically diverse population on the natural sites. Within this framework, all the factors relevant for conservation were taken into account on an entire area and for the first time. Simultaneously, living collections were comprehensively conserved.


The importance of conserving the genetic resource "wild grape" is twofold in the context of biodiversity conservation because along with an endangered and rare wild plant a genetic resource is conserved which may be important for resistance and quality breeding of grape-vine.

Within the framework of the project, the last wild grape locations in Germany were identified and characterized. A total of 326 wild grapes are included. Of these, 85 wild grapes can be traced back to natural regeneration and 241 to plantations. These individuals form different groups and populations in the Upper Rhine between Kaiserstuhl and Mannheim. Current natural regeneration could be observed in only one single population. It is located in Baden-Württemberg on the Rhine island of Ketch and includes 81 individuals.

The data provided in PGRDEU describe the populations detected in the project.

Data from the European Plant Genetic Resources Search Catalogue (EURISCO)

The European Plant Genetic Resources Search Catalogue (EURISCO) is a web-based catalogue that provides information about ex situ plant collections across Europe. It currently contains so-called passport data for more than one million samples of plant diversity held in nearly 240 European institutes in 38 countries.

The catalogue also includes information on where a particular gene bank accession was collected. A query for German accessions (Country of Origin = DEU / DDR) indirectly provides the growth locations of plant genetic resources in Germany. This information is included in the in situ part of PGRDEU.

Data from Selected Publications

Data on the locations of respective plants were taken from selected scientific papers on crop wild relatives in Germany to be presented in PGRDEU. The contents of the publications are briefly described below.

Drießen, S. (2003): Beta vulgaris subsp. maritima an Deutschlands Ostseeküste, Kartierung, genetische und physiologische Charakterisierung und ihre Rolle als Kreuzungspartner für transgene Zuckerrüben, Rheinisch Westfälische Technische Hochschule Aachen


The aim of this study was to characterize the Baltic populations of Beta vulgaris subsp. maritima (wild beet) in detail. This way, baseline-data can be generated to measure possible ecological effects of transgenic sugar beets. The study showed that B. vulgaris subsp. maritima has established itself at Germany's Baltic Sea coast in recent years. It seems to continue spreading. While there were 62 individuals at 5 locations in 1997, there were more than 560 individuals at 16 locations in 2001. An analysis of temperature data suggests that increasingly warmer winters could be the reason for this spread. PGRDEU contains the results of the mapping carried out this work.

Forwick, J., Wunder, J. ,Wingender, R., Möseler, B. M., Schnabl, H. (2003): Morphometrische und molekularbiologische Erfassung und Untersuchung von Wildpflanzenpopulationen in Nordrhein-Westfalen als pflanzengenetische Ressourcen. Landwirtschaftliche Fakultät der Universität Bonn, Schriftenreihe des Lehr- und Forschungsschwerpunktes.


To study the variability of wild plant populations in North Rhine-Westphalia - as the basis for the creation of a conservation concept for in situ conservation of plant genetic resources - four model species were chosen, namely the small-seed false flax (Camelina microcarpa ANDRZ.), the common cornsalad (Valerianella locusta (L.) LATERR.), the caraway (Carum carvi L.) and hop (Humulus lupulus L.). The results of the mapping are incorporated into PGRDEU.

Boss-Burkhard, B. und T. Gladis (2000): Der Eschlauch in Deutschland – angepflanzt und vergessen, gesucht und wiedergefunden, Verein zur Erhaltung der Nutzpflanzenvielfalt e.V. (VEN)


Medieval herbals contain pictures of an onion plant that are not in line with either formal or informal descriptions of the relationship of the onion. Neither is it very similar to chives (Allium schoenoprasum L.). In the early 1990s, a plant was found on the slopes of the Neckar Valley that comes very close to these illustrations and woodcuts of CAMERARIUS (1586), for instance, and its flavor is similar to that of the onion. To ascertain the present distribution of this interesting, little-known population, a call was published in the Stuttgart regional magazine \"BW agro\" to find more individuals of this plant. The results of this call are presented in the publication and prepared for PGRDEU.