Collection Arrangement

To enable you to make the most of your visit this page provides a brief overview of how the herbarium collection is organised.

The British Flora

Scope: British vascular plants (Angiosperms, Gymnosperms, Pteridophytes). These are held separately to the main collection, at the start of the herbarium sequence.

Taxonomic Arrangement: Kent (1992), List of Vascular Plants of the British Isles.

Index: The index to all genera contained within the British Flora collection is kept in the first cabinet of the collection. Species are organised within genera according to Kent (1992), List of Vascular Plants of the British Isles.

Numbering: Genera and species are numbered systematically according to Kent (1992).

Geographic Arrangement: Genera are arranged by division of the British Islands, i.e. Scotland, England, Ireland (includes both Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland), Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man. Within these divisions specimens are arranged by vice-county in ascending order.

Additional Notes:

The following genera have their own indices:

  • Hieracium
  • Taraxacum

Hybrids

A hybrid is filed after the first species listed in the cross. E.g. 9 X 6 would be filed below specimens for species 9 within that particular genus.

Algae

Scope: British and foreign macroalgae.

Taxonomic Arrangement: Specimens are alphabetical by genus within each major group (e.g. Rhodophyta). Species are arranged alphabetically within each genus.

Index: No index present.

Numbering: No numbering present.

Geographic Arrangement: British algae are separate and precede the foreign collection.

British algae: Genera are arranged by division of the British Islands, i.e. Scotland, England, Ireland (includes both Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland), Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man. Within these divisions specimens are arranged by vice-county in ascending order.

Foreign Algae: There is no geographic ordering within the foreign algae collection with the exception of the Charophyta which follows the RBGE geographic regions 1-19.

Additional Notes: The British algae are separate and precede the foreign algae. The British and foreign Charophyta are placed at the end of the algae collection because they are closest to the vascular plants in evolutionary terms.

Fungi

Scope: British and foreign fungi, slime moulds and water moulds.

Taxonomic Arrangement: Alphabetical by genera within each major group (i.e. Basidiomycetes and Ascomycetes). Species are arranged alphabetically within each genus.

Index: No indices present.

Numbering: No numbering present.

Geographic Arrangement: British fungi are separate and precede the foreign collection.

British Fungi: There is no further geographic division of the specimens beyond the British Isles (i.e. Scottish specimens are not filed separately from English specimens etc.)

Foreign Fungi: No geographical division. Newer collections where multiple specimens are mounted on one sheet will be from the same country (older specimens may have specimens from multiple countries).

Additional Notes:

“British/Foreign Phycos Myxos” cabinets contain the following:

  • Myxomycetes (slime moulds)
  • Oomycetes (water moulds)
  • Phycomycetes
  • Zygomycetes

Some specimens within these cabinets may belong to the Ascomycetes.

Lichens

Scope: British and foreign lichens.

Taxonomic Arrangement: Arranged alphabetically by genus, species are arranged alphabetically within each genus.

Index: No indices present.

Numbering: No numbering present.

Geographic Arrangement: British lichens are separate and precede the foreign collection.

British Lichens: The collection is in the process of being split into the following divisions: Scotland, England, Ireland (includes both Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland), Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man. This order (i.e. starting with the Scottish material) is maintained where space permits.

Foreign Lichens: Where possible, herbarium sheets contain specimens from the same geographic region at country level.

Additional Notes: The collection is arranged alphabetically by genera because this is the most stable way of organising the collection. Taxonomy above the genus level is changing at a rapid pace.

Bryophytes

Hepaticae

Scope: British and foreign liverworts.

Taxonomic Arrangement: The British collection is organised according to Hill et al. (2008), A Checklist and Census Catalogue of British and Irish Bryophytes. The foreign collection is arranged alphabetically by genus (families are not used in the arrangement).

Index: The index to the British genera is in the first cabinet of the collection. There is no index for the foreign collection.

Numbering: The British Genera and species are numbered according to Hill et al. (2008), A Checklist and Census Catalogue of British and Irish Bryophytes.  The foreign collection is arranged alphabetically by genus (families are not used in the arrangement).

Geographic Arrangement: The British liverworts are separate and precede the foreign collection.

British Hepaticae: The British Collection is arranged by division of the British Islands, i.e. Scotland, England, Ireland (includes both Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland), Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man. Within these divisions specimens are arranged by vice-county in ascending order.

Foreign Hepaticae: Specimens are arranged according to the RBGE geographic regions 1-19 within species covers.

Notes: Species covers contain specimens in ascending order of geographical region. There can be more than one geographical region within a species cover. Regions are not delimited or labelled.

Hornworts

Scope: British and foreign hornworts.

Taxonomic Arrangement: The British Genera and species are numbered according to Hill et al. (2008), A Checklist and Census Catalogue of British and Irish Bryophytes.  The foreign collection is arranged alphabetically by genus (families are not used in the arrangement).

Index: No indices present.

Numbering: The British Genera and species are numbered according to Hill et al. (2008), A Checklist and Census Catalogue of British and Irish Bryophytes.  The foreign collection is arranged alphabetically by genus (families are not used in the arrangement).

Geographic Arrangement: The British hornworts are separate and precede the foreign collection.

British hornworts: Genera are arranged by division of British Isles, i.e. Scotland, England, Ireland, Wales, Channel Islands and Isle of Man. Within these divisions specimens are arranged by vice-county.

Foreign hornworts: Specimens are arranged according to the RBGE geographic regions 1-19 within species covers.

Notes: Species covers contain specimens in ascending order of geographical region. There can be more than one geographical region within a species cover. Regions are not delimited or labelled.

Musci

Scope: British and foreign mosses.

Taxonomic Arrangement: The British collection is organised according to A Checklist and Census Catalogue of British and Irish Bryophytes, Hill et al. 2008. The foreign collection is arranged alphabetically by genus (families are not used in system).

Index: British Genera are numbered; species are also numbered (refer to Hill et al. 2008). There is no index for the foreign collection.

Numbering: The British Genera and species are numbered according to Hill et al. (2008), A Checklist and Census Catalogue of British and Irish Bryophytes.  The foreign collection is arranged alphabetically by genus (families are not used in the arrangement).

Geographic Arrangement: British mosses are separate and precede the foreign collection.

British musci: Genera are arranged by division of British Isles, i.e. Scotland, England, Ireland, Wales, Channel Islands and Isle of Man. Within these divisions specimens are arranged by vice-county.

Foreign musci: Specimens are arranged according to the RBGE geographic regions 1-19 within species covers.

Notes: Species covers contain specimens in ascending order of geographical region. There can be more than one geographical region within a species cover. Regions are not delimited or labelled.

 

 

 

Ferns

Foreign Ferns

Scope: Non-British ferns and fern allies 

Taxonomic Arrangement: Families and genera are arranged according to Smith et al. 2006 JSE 54(6):563-603.

Index: An index of the family numbers can be found on the side aisle of the cabinets housing the fern collection.

Numbering: The three fern-allied families are arranged alphabetically. The fern families are numbered 1-37,  family numbers can be found in the gymnosperm index. Genera are alphabetical within families, species are alphabetical within genera.

Geographic Arrangement: Within each family, genera are organised by RBGE geographic regions 1-19.

Additional Notes: The fern allies as arranged alphabetically at the beginning of the section: Isoetaceae (quillworts), Lycopodiaceae (clubmosses) and Sellaginellaceae (spikemosses) respectively.

Gymnosperms

Scope: Non-British gymnosperms

Taxonomic Arrangement: Families and genera are arranged according to Christenhusz et al. 2011 Phytotaxa 19: 55–70.

Index: An index to families and genera can be found on the side aisle of the cabinets housing the gymnosperm collection

Numbering: The gymnosperm families are numbered 1-12. Family and genus numbers can be found in the gymnosperm index. Species are ordered alphabetically within genera.

Geographic Arrangement: Within each family, genera are organised by RBGE geographic regions 1-19.

Additional Notes: The gymnosperm index includes synonymy at the generic level.

Angiosperms

Scope: Angiosperms (excluding Britain & Ireland)

Taxonomic Arrangement: Linear Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (LAPG) II family sequence.

Index: An alphabetical list of the families and their respective numbers can be found on the side of cabinets at intervals along the herbarium isles. Indices to genera are located in the first cabinet for each family that is below head height. Species indices occur at the beginning of each geographical region for large genera where species are ordered by publication number e.g. Carex and Rhododendron.

Numbering: Families 1-479 and species are arranged alphabetically

Geographic Arrangement: Within each family, genera are organised by RBGE geographic regions 1-19.

Additional Notes: Families 1-162 (including all monocot families) are on the first floor of the herbarium, 163 – 479 are situated on the second floor.

Indices to genera are always located in the first cabinet for each family that is below head height except in families that occur in a single cabinet above head height.

In each geographical region species within a genus are arranged alphabetically. There are a few exceptions e.g. Carex and Rhododendron, here species are ordered by publication number, a species index is provided at the start of each geographical region in these instances.