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© Chu Xuan Canh / Fauna & Flora

© Chu Xuan Canh / Fauna & Flora

Protecting rare conifers and magnolias in northern Vietnam

Project lead: Alicky Davey

Fauna & Flora is working with local community groups in northern Vietnam to conserve 17 threatened tree species found in Tung Vai Watershed Protection Area and Bat Dai Son Nature Reserve. This includes the world’s largest population of the critically endangered Magnolia grandis.

Our work in northern Vietnam

The karst limestone hills of northern Vietnam are home to some of the world’s rarest and most remarkable trees, including several beautiful magnolias. Sadly, the area is under intense pressure from logging and agriculture.

Fauna & Flora works closely with cardamom farmers to better protect target tree species and scale up restoration work. Planting trees not only helps to boost the population size of threatened species, but also provides shade and increases canopy cover, protecting farmers’ crops from winter snowfall.

Community Conservation Teams patrol both protected areas; these teams not only deter loggers but also provide data that is vital for strengthening enforcement.

Project goals

While most of our work to date has focused on a small subset of threatened species in Vietnam, the newest phase of the project aims to provide a large, secure and efficiently managed landscape for at least 17 threatened trees found within it, enhanced by our continued work with cardamom farmers and others to promote sustainable livelihoods.

Our impact

Our team has planted over 4,000 Magnolia grandis seedlings back into the landscape and we are now observing significant levels of natural regeneration of this species as a result of our work with cardamom farmers. Farmers who were previously paid to maintain the seedlings of threatened species are now continuing to do so without financial support, indicating a lasting change in attitudes towards tree conservation.

Project timeline

    Magnolia seedlings © David Gill / Fauna & Flora

    Magnolia seedlings © David Gill / Fauna & Flora


    Over 6,500 seedlings of threatened or associated tree species planted. 


    800 naturally regenerating Magnolia grandis seedlings discovered.


    No felling of, or damage to, Magnolia grandis trees recorded at Tung Vai (for sixth year running) or Bat Dai Son (first year of patrols). 


    Project activities expanded into nearby Bat Dai Son Nature Reserve.


    1,100 Magnolia grandis seedlings planted. 

    © Chu Xuan Canh / Fauna & Flora

    © Chu Xuan Canh / Fauna & Flora


    Project begins as Magnolia grandis and M. coriacea found in Vietnam.


We are grateful for financial support from Fondation Franklinia.

Saving wild magnolias, together

The wild relatives of some of our favourite ornamental
trees are close to extinction.

Please help us to safeguard their future.

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Alicky Davey profile picture

Alicky Davey

Programme Manager, Plant Conservation