Extinct In The Wild, Franklin Tree

Extinct in the Wild 1840sGeorgia

The Franklin tree is native only to Georgia and one of the rarest trees in the world. Discovered in the mid-eighteenth century by John Bartram and his son, by 1803 it had disappeared completely from the wild. It is not definitely known why the plant disappeared, but theories include climate change and deforestation. "Franklinia only survived due to the Bartrams' collecting plants and seeds as avid horticulturists and propagating them in their Philadelphia garden the last quarter of the 18th century. All cultivated plants today descend from one or more of their collected specimens." Efforts are underway to restore the tree to the wild by planting specimens near the site where they were originally discovered.

Rowland, Lucy M. "America's 'First' Rare Plant: The Franklin Tree.".

Bartram, William. Franklinia Alatamaha. 1788. <https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:William_Bartram01.jpg>.