A stocktake of the garden beds in Canberra and at Jervis Bay is conducted regularly. This involves mapping the location of the plants within each garden bed, checking nomenclature and accession details against a current computer printout, repositioning tags and labels, and assessing the health of plants. Special attention is paid to the endangered species collection. Following the stocktake the database is updated, new labels are ordered and species are checked for numbers so that a propagation request can be forwarded the Nursery if necessary.
A stocktake of the seed collection is also done annually. The function of the seed collection is to ensure that appropriate quantities of viable seed are available to meet propagation demands.
New technology such as bar-coding, computerised Geographic Information Systems and remote recording offer the possibility of greater effectiveness for the records and information system. Bar-coding has been investigated as a means of speeding up data entry and recall and eliminating `human' transcription error; the main problem still to be overcome relates to the longevity of tag material, especially when it is exposed to the open weather. Geographic Information Systems have been examined and several staff have attended courses, but a suitable system has not yet been identified.
Assistance will be sought through the volunteers program to make the operation of the seed store more effective.