Last Franciscan Manzanita Gets Endangered Species Protection
There will soon be new protections for the world's only known wild Franciscan manzanita, a plant now thriving in a secret location in the Presidio.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced on Wednesday that it's declaring the plant endangered. Brent Plater is executive director for the Wild Equity Institute, which petitioned for the endangered species designation.
"They've also proposed to protect the habitats that this plant needs to survive and recover." Plater says, "And those habitats include not only the place where this plant is currently found, but other areas that are necessary to reintroduce the species so the species as a whole can thrive."
Plater says the designated habitats are in the Presidio or in San Francisco city parks, places suitable for the large shrub which likes serpentine soils and a good dose of fog.
The Franciscan manzanita was thought extinct in the wild, but this lone survivor was discovered and rescued when a botanist found it in 2010 in the path of bulldozers working on the Doyle Drive project.