Saving plants saves places. Founded in 1965, the California Native Plant Society (CNPS) is a non-profit organization dedicated to conserving California native plants and their natural habitats. CNPS serves as a leading voice in plant science and native plant appreciation, making it one of the foremost native plant organizations in the world.
CNPS maintains an online Inventory of Rare and Endangered Plants (Inventory), which is a widely-recognized resource for information about California’s rare plants. The Inventory guides rare plant protection, promoting scientific research, education, conservation planning, land acquisition, and enforcement of environmental laws. Its data is accepted as the standard for information on the rarity and endangerment status of California flora.
After years of use and maintenance, operation of the online, legacy system was becoming a burden for staff, prompting need of an update. In partnership with Rincon Consultants, Inc., Jones Payne is providing a complete rebuild of the Inventory.
PROJECT GOALS: The team is in the process of rebuilding the web application with modern tools, converting the back-end of the database from MS Access to SQL based. All current data will be migrated to the new database, and a data management interface will be added to simplify maintenance for CNPS staff. The improved system will streamline monthly data imports from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife via the California Natural Diversity Database (CNDDB) as well as the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Geospatial data will be connected to provide accurate web mapping.
Plants are the foundation of our ecosystems. California has more plant species than any other state in the U.S., and at least one-third of the native plants are found nowhere else in the world. The online Inventory – currently in its 8th edition – is available to the public, and regularly accessed by citizen scientists, consultants, planners, researchers, and resource managers to help educate landowners and public policy makers about the importance of rare plant stewardship and conservation.