Visiting the Herbarium

Researchers are welcome to visit the Steere Herbarium after obtaining approval from Herbarium staff. Please contact Assistant Director of the Herbarium Nicole Tarnowsky ( to schedule your visit. Please notify us at least two weeks in advance of your anticipated visit, to ensure that space and staff support will be available. Even more notice is appreciated, if possible.

We will make every attempt to facilitate visit requests, but we reserve the right to deny any visit request at any time, or to terminate a visit early if a visitor is in violation of any of NYBG’s general guidelines for visitors.

Herbarium Hours

Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Weekends and holidays: closed


The New York Botanical Garden is in the Bronx, one of the five boroughs of New York City. To access the Herbarium, please come to the Mosholu entrance of NYBG (street address is 2950 Southern Blvd., Bronx, NY 10458).

When directing a taxi, tell them “The Botanical Garden in the Bronx, next to the Zoo and Fordham University”, or provide the address above for the Mosholu entrance.

A Metro-North Harlem Line train station is immediately across the street from the Mosholu entrance to NYBG; Grand Central Terminal is a 20-minute ride away.

When you arrive at the Garden, ask the NYBG security guards at the entrance to direct you to the Watson Building. Herbarium personnel will meet you in the Watson lobby.

Please see the NYBG visitor page for additional directions for arriving via car or public transportation


Accommodation Information

NYBG does not provide visitor accommodations, but many options are available in the greater NYC area. Here are some suggestions (please note that NYBG does not endorse any of these options, we offer them only as starting points to search for accommodation):

  • Hotels around Grand Central Terminal – Grand Central is a 20-minute train ride from NYBG. Many hotels and restaurants are available within an easy walking distance of Grand Central.
  • AirBnBs in New York City – AirBnB is increasingly being discouraged in NYC, but many options still exist, in Manhattan as well as the Bronx.
  • Hotels in White Plains – Another option is to stay north of NYBG, in Westchester. Not many hotel options exist within walking distance of the train line until you reach White Plains (about a 30-minute ride from the Garden), which has several options.

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.


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 NY and obtain written permission prior to sampling. NY reserves the right to refuse to provide samples of the specimens in its care for any reason. Please complete a Destructive Sampling Request and return it to the appropriate NY staff member so that your request can be evaluated: for vascular plants, please contact Assistant Curator of the Herbarium Dr. Matthew Pace,; for non-vascular plants, fungi, lichens, and algae, please contact Assistant Director of the Herbarium for Cryptogamic Collections, Laura Briscoe:

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.

NYBG Visiting Scientist Travel Awards

Funds are available to support researchers wishing to visit NYBG Science in person. Students and professional researchers may apply for an NYBG Visiting Scientist Travel Award to support their work in the collections, facilities, or with NYBG curators. Awards may be used to defray any costs associated with travel, and are available in the following amounts: $100 per day for student researchers and $50 per day for professional researchers, for up to 14 days (a total of $1400 for students or $700 for professionals).

To apply for a travel award, please assemble the following:

Please send these materials as attachments to Your email should have the subject “NYBG Visiting Scientist Travel Award Application”.

We will assess requests for awards on a quarterly basis. In order to ensure your request is evaluated with enough time before your anticipated travel dates, please submit your application by the following deadlines:

  • For visits in January, February, or March, submit your application by Nov 1.
  • For visits in April, May, or June, submit your application by Feb 1.
  • For visits in July, August, or September, submit your application by May 1.
  • For visits in October, November, or December, submit your application by Aug 1.

Applications arriving after these dates are still welcome, and will be evaluated as funds allow.

Please direct any questions about NYBG Visiting Scientist Travel Awards to