The Korea National Arboretum (KNA) is the nation's leading research institute that specializes in forest biospecies. The Arboretum was formally an affiliate of the Central Region Experimental Forestry Station of the Forest Research Center and reopened as an independent research institute on May 24, 1999, in an attempt to promote the conservation of Gwangneung Forest underpinned by government measures.

The arboretum plays critical roles in the field of plants and ecosystems:
identifying, collecting, propagating, and conserving forest plants as well as collecting, classifying, producing, and managing forest biospieces. We are also committed to perating educational programs, spreading forest culture, and conserving Gwangneung Forest. To accomplish our goals, we are working on diverse fields such as establishing a national plant resource management system, operating a plant conservation center, expanding specialized arboretums and enhancing their roles, identifying useful plants from home and abroad, building a forest biospecies center, expanding educational programs, promoting the arboretum, establishing an arboretum library, conserving the ecosystem of Gwangneung Forest.

Moreover, the KNA's thematic gardens opened in 1987 after a three-year construction period, and they now consist of 24 gardens with different plant characteristics and functions.

Our Forest Museum, opened on April 5, 1987, exhibits around 4,900 items including woodworks, relics, and materials presenting the history, present, and future of forests in Korea. Also, the Korea National Herbarium, opened in 2003, preserves and manages more than 1.16 million biospecies of plants, insects, wildlife animals, and plant seeds.

In addition, we have around 2,703 tropical plant species in the Tropical Plant Resources Research Center, established in 2008. The KNA initiated the Korea Biodiversity Information System to provide information on forest biospecies samples and plant databases collected from associated universities, research institutions, arboretums, and botanic gardens as well as the KNA. We also operate the Korean Plant Names Index Committee with the Korea Society of Plant Taxonomists to standardize and name domestic plants.

Likewise, the KNA has continued the tradition of research on forest biospecies in Korea, that first began in the 1920s. In particular, it has played a key role in securing biological sovereignty. Moreover, the KNA, as a national research institute, takes the lead in coserving and managing Gwangneung Forest, which holds more than 500 years of history since designated as the royal tomb site of King Sejo of the Joseon dynasty in 1468.

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