Plan Your Visit

Herbarium Visitor Information

The New York Botanical Garden Herbarium is open to professional and non-professional visitors with scientific reasons to study the collections. Please contact Barbara Thiers (bthiers@nybg.org ) or Matthew Pace (mpace@nybg.org) to schedule your visit.

Herbarium hours

Monday - Friday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Weekends and holidays: closed

Directions

The New York Botanical Garden is in the Bronx, one of the five boroughs of New York City. Many New Yorkers call NYBG the "Bronx Botanical Garden," and sometimes confuse it with the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. When directing a taxi, tell them "The Botanical Garden in the Bronx next to the Zoo and Fordham University."

When you arrive at the Garden, ask The New York Botanical Garden security guard to direct you to the Watson Building.

Please see the visitor page for directions via car or public transportation.

Upon arrival

Please ask the security guard or desk operator in the Watson Building Lobby to call the Herbarium office, to announce your arrival. A member of the Herbarium staff will orient you to the Herbarium. Normal working hours are 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday. By special arrangement, you may be able to work before and after these hours.

The Garden’s LuEsther T. Mertz Library’s hours are different from those of the Herbarium. Please consult the library website for further information.

Non-NYBG Study Specimens

Any specimens brought to the Herbarium to be studied must be frozen for 48 hours before using them in the Herbarium to reduce the possibility of introducing insect pests. Please indicate this when arranging your visit.

Arrangement of the collections

Families are arranged in the Englerian sequence, modified to reflect the families recognized by Cronquist, 1988. Within each family, the genera are sorted alphabetically; each genus is sorted into geographical regions in color-coded folders; and within geographic regions the species are sorted alphabetically, with unidentified specimens at the end of each category. Boxes of separate parts, including fruits, are filed at the end of each family.

Type specimens are arranged in a similar fashion but in a separate part of the herbarium.

CITES Listed Taxa

Please familiarize yourself with the Text of the Convention and the resolution regarding herbarium specimens that pertain to the use and transport of the specimens and their parts and products (e.g., DNA extracts). In brief, specimens (incl. parts and products) may be used only for scientific study (not for commercial purposes) and may be transported internationally only between institutions registered with CITES.

Annotations

General Collection

Visiting specialists are encouraged to annotate specimens using permanent ink on annotation labels, indicating the name of the investigator and the date of annotation. Visitors should glue their own annotation labels; annotation labels and glue are available in supply baskets on the counters on each floor of the Herbarium and in the study rooms.

Please fill out any chits you may encounter with new determinations and give them to a NYBG staff member.

If you annotate any specimens, please set them aside to be recorded by one of the Herbarium staff. Please re-file species and genus covers back into the Herbarium cabinets.

If your study results in the necessity of a rearrangement of our collections, please leave the specimens that you annotated on a table with a complete list of synonyms, so that the specimens can be filed and cross-referenced properly.

Type Collection

Annotate previously unverified types with the basionym and original place of publication and include your name. Give these to a member of the Herbarium staff for inclusion in the Type Database. Special type annotation labels can be obtained from any staff member.

Study Rooms

If you are assigned to a study room, please work with your specimens in that room, to the extent possible, in order to leave the scopes and counters in the Herbarium itself available to those without a study room in which to work.

Destructive sampling of specimens

Researchers must consult with and obtain written permission from Dr. Matthew Pace (mpace@nybg.org) prior to any sampling for DNA extraction and/or anatomical research.

Photographing Herbarium Specimens

If you wish to take photographs of herbarium specimens, you may do so for scientific or educational purposes without charge, but permission is required to publish them. If permission is granted, the image should be cited as belonging to The New York Botanical Garden Herbarium. If specimens are stamped Imaged, you may request a copy of the image.