Coral Gardens are man-made frames, installed on the seabed on which juvenile corals are fixed, cleaned and monitored until such time as they are capable of growing and reproducing on their own. These underwater gardens are used as a means to restore corals and enhance coral recruitment in reef areas which have been previously damaged. They are growing worldwide; different sites focus on different coral species, with branching coral species being mostly used to date.
In Bermuda, Living Reefs and BIOS propose to research coral gardening for Bermuda boulder species; this would also be useful to Caribbean reef conservation. Scientists grow juvenile corals in the laboratory from donor or parent colonies until they are large enough to be transferred to frames installed in selected sites; corals are cleaned often at first, their growth is monitored. As they grow and reproduce, other reef organisms become attracted to the coral environment, and the garden grows, enhancing the reef system in the area.
Click here to see a more in depth video as it relates to coral gardening.