Japanese visitors to Keele's cherry tree collection

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Posted on 05 May 2017

Keele was recently visited by two groups of Japanese visitors with interests in the National Collection of Cherries at Keele.

The first were journalists from Kateigaho magazine, published in Tokyo, the equivalent of our Country Life. They interviewed some of the people associated with the National Collection of Cherries at Keele, including Dr Peter Thomas and Chris Sanders VMH.  They will be publishing a lengthy article on cherry collections in the UK with a major emphasis on Keele.

The second group were researchers, including Dr Takaaki Oohara from the Botanic Gardens of Toyama, Japan and Dr Junko Oikawa, a consultant in horticulture and plant conservation based in Germany who were working with Dr Peter Thomas.  Dr Oohara is investigating the DNA of very old cherry cultivars to establish their original parentage and also in reintroducing some of the cherries in our collection back into Japan where they are currently extinct.

Dr Takaaki Oohara and Dr Junko Oikawa in front of Prunus ‘Kirin’.