Herbarium

Click to search the Herbarium online database!

Herbarium policies:
Guidelines for Visitors
Herbarium Loan Policy
Herbarium Policy for Depositing Specimens
Master Collector Excel Templates
Herbarium Policy for Destructive Sampling

What is a Herbarium?

A herbarium is a museum of dried plant specimens. Herbaria provide a permanent record of our changing flora over time, documenting all plant species discovered so far, their variation, and their past and present distributions. These specimens also hold a treasure trove of anatomical, chemical, ethnobotanical, and molecular information, and document the history of plant exploration.

Microcladia coulteri, or Sea Lace, from the Algal collection

About UBC Herbarium

The University of British Columbia Herbarium is the largest in Canada west of Ottawa, and is home to over half a million plant specimens from around the world. This collection is critical to the identification, monitoring, and conservation of plant biodiversity in British Columbia, and is an important resource for scientific research and education.

The UBC Herbarium has five major collections: vascular plants (flowering plants, conifers, ferns, and their relatives); bryophytes (mosses, liverworts and hornworts); macroscopic algae (mostly seaweeds); lichens and fungi.

In addition to the world’s largest collection of BC plants, our internationally recognized bryophyte collection is the largest in Canada. We also have important collections of Pacific algae, fungi, Hawaiian plants and tropical prayer plants.

You can search the Herbarium specimens through our online database.

If you would like to access the Herbarium for research purposes please contact Linda Jennings with reference to algae and vascular plants, and Olivia Lee with reference to bryophytes, fungi, and lichens (contact us).

Algae Collection

Algae are a diverse group of aquatic organisms.

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Bryophytes Collection

Bryophytes are plants without specialized tissues for moving water or nutrients.

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Vascular Plants Collection

Vascular plants have internal cellular structures for moving water up from the roots.

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Fungi and Lichens Collection

Fungi are organisms with nuclei-containing cells that get nutrients by breaking down organic material.

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History of the Herbarium

John Davidson started the Herbarium in 1912, at which point it was mostly vascular plants.

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