Bryophytes Collection

One of the largest and most comprehensive Pacific Northwest bryophyte collections.

Total size of collection – 327,000 specimens

Bryophytes are plants without specialized tissues for moving water or nutrients. They reproduce by spores, have very tiny leaves, or no leaves at all, and do not have flowers.

The bryophyte collection houses mosses, liverworts, and hornworts and is a tribute to the career of Dr. Wilf Schofield, who came to UBC in 1960. Professor Schofield was the first bryologist hired at a Canadian university. When he started at UBC, the collection included roughly 3,000 specimens. As a result of Dr. Schofield’s efforts and those of his students and post-doctoral researchers, the collection has grown to over 250,000 specimens, a considerable legacy. After his retirement, Dr. Schofield continued his research, up to the month before his passing in November 2008. He was such an avid collector that his specimens will continue to be processed and added to the collection for some time.

This bryophyte collection is one of the largest and most important in the world and is broad in geographic and taxonomic representation. The major representation is from British Columbia and adjacent states of the United States and strong representation for the Atlantic provinces of Canada. For Europe the collection has modest holdings; for Australia and New Zealand the collections are representative, but not extensive. The same is true for Japan, Taiwan, and the Hawaiian Islands. The lowest representation is for Africa and South America. The genera with the most comprehensive representation are: Mosses; Andreaea, Grimmia, Hygrohypnum, Hypnum, Hylocomium, Isothecium, Philonotis, Racomitrium, Rhytidiadelphus, Sanionia, Schistidium, Sphagnum, Takakia, Tetraphis, Tetrodontium and Hepatics; Anastrophyllum, Diplophyllum, Gymnomitrion, Lophozia (s.l.), Marsupella, Plagiochila, Ptilidium, Scapania.

You can search the Herbarium’s bryophyte specimens through our online database.

If you would like to access the Herbarium’s bryophyte collection for research purposes, please contact Olivia Lee (see contact information).