Horticultural researcher Ros Smith has studied the conservation of rare plant species and propagated rhododendrons hit by Phytophthora ramorum. The funding will help further research and conservation opportunities.
She said: "As the world population makes greater and greater demands on land use, it is important to ensure the survival of as wide a variety of plants as possible.
"Old cultivars have often been superseded by more attractive forms but these older plants could well hold important genetic information - for example, for disease resistance or medicinal compounds - that could be useful in future. The money will be used to bulk up threatened plants from National Collection holders."