Botanic Gardens Trust, Sydney, Australia

Identifying plant specimens

Also see identifying plants and Plant identification service

It is important that specimens in a collection are correctly identified. The Flora of New South Wales (4 volumes edited by G. Harden 1990-1993) includes keys and illustrations to enable accurate identification of specimens. If specimens cannot be identified by means such as handbooks, floras or field guides, they may be forwarded to the relevant State herbarium for identification. The National Herbarium of NSW has an identification service for NSW plants as well as a self-help public reference collection. Any specimen submitted should be accompanied by full field and locality information, and each one should be placed on a separate sheet or in a separate dry newspaper folder, the folders being packed as a flat parcel. The specimens should be numbered and a duplicate set of specimens should be retained so that each name can be compared with the appropriate numbered specimen when the list of determinations is returned. No more than 12 specimens will be named in one collection, except under special circumstances. Any more than 6 specimens will incur a fee.

Specimens should be dried before they are sent, and not packed in cellophane or plastic. Specimens sent in bottles (e.g. algae) should be carefully packed and sealed in plastic to avoid leakage and put in a cooled esky. The bottles should be labelled with the name of any preservative used. Formalin must not be sent through the post.

Plant Identification Service

Also see Plant identification service

Specimens fowarded for identification should be addressed to:

Botanical Information Service
Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust
Mrs Macquaries Road
Sydney 2000
Telephone: 9231 8111
Fax: 9251 7231


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