Botanic Gardens Wallace Herbarium

The development of the Wallace Herbarium has been a high priority since the inception of the Gardens. Despite the lack of permanent premises in the early years, development continued, and still does so today.

The long term aim of the Curator of the Wallace Herbarium is to obtain specimens of the more than 2000 plant species that occur naturally within the Collecting Region, a philosophy that supports the strictly regional concept of the Gardens. The collection includes introduced species that have become naturalised. The Collecting Region covers the catchments of the Clyde, Deua and Tuross Rivers covering a wide variety of habitats and plant communities; from seaside dunes to subalpine areas, from sandstone heaths to cool temperate rainforests, and from tall sclerophyll forests to grasslands.

The Wallace Herbarium is central to the scientific aspect of the Gardens. The collection has been documented, identified and processed in accordance with scientific best practices. The contents of the Wallace Herbarium are data based and have been included in the National Herbarium database.

Voucher material relating to the Living Collection is housed in the Herbarium. This allows for genetic research into provenanced flora of the Collecting Region. The collection also contains a number of specimens showing the variation in form and colour of particular species.

By dividing the collecting region into districts, and collecting exhaustively within each district, the distribution of species can be plotted and then studied. Furthermore, many species have been collected from outside their published range; it is expected that this facet of the work will increase in importance. Other work associated with collecting is the location of unrecorded populations of threatened and endangered species.

The collecting and processing of specimens is carried out by volunteers under the supervision of an Honorary Curator. The Wallace Herbarium would not exist without the significant contribution of its volunteers.

Our Herbarium volunteers also provide a plant identification service. Plants can be brought into our Visitor Centre, where they will be prepared for identification. The result will be advised by phone or email usually within the following fortnight.

The list of scientific specimens held in the Wallace Herbarium is available here: ERBG Herbarium plant list.

Eurobodalla Regional Seed Bank

In 2012 the Friends of the Gardens in partnership with Eurobodalla Shire Council, successfully sought $370 000 funding to establish a regional seed bank of native flora from the Gardens collecting region. The collecting region has a geographical base that covers the catchments of the district’s three large rivers, the Clyde, the Deua and the Tuross in addition to portions of the Mongarlowe and Bermagui River catchments.

The project is developing a reliable source of native seed and seedling stock targeting high conservation value ecosystems, over-cleared landscapes and identified corridors of local and regional significance on the South Coast of NSW.

Over time it will enable land managers to expand and reconnect habitat on their properties through mixed species plantings appropriate to the locality. This will help build landscape resilience, improve connectivity and ensure the retention of natural diversity.

The Herbarium is not generally open to the public however open days are planned & will be advertised on this site.