Botanic Gardens Trust, Sydney, Australia



Self-guided tour - available soon as smartphone app

Greening PlantBank

Plants are adapted to make best use of their surroundings, including soil type, available nutrients, climate, sunlight and rainfall. Similarly, the Australian PlantBank has been carefully designed to integrate with and respond to the landscape, environment and operational needs.

  • The roof and gutter systems harvest rainwater, which is used for flushing the toilets and to water the lichen garden.
  • The orientation and design of the building makes best use of natural light, the sun’s warmth and prevailing winds for passive heating and cooling.
  • Building materials have been selected for their insulation properties, sustainability, recyclability, pest and rodent exclusion, low maintenance and fire resistant qualities.
  • The internal environments are carefully controlled to minimise energy use.

Hidden talents

The Australian PlantBank building includes two subterranean thermal labyrinths - one is behind this metal screen. Air is pulled very slowly through the screens into the labyrinths. On a summer’s day, the thermal mass of the ground and the concrete labyrinths can pre-cool the air by up to 7.5 degrees Celsius before it reaches the building’s air-conditioning system. In winter the labyrinth can be used to warm the air, making the building more energy-efficient, and comfortable for staff and visitors.

See map below for location of Sustainability information at PlantBank (itour coming soon).



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Foundation & Friends