The Herbarium welcomes visitors to study our collections, enjoy our displays or simply relax in a botanical setting. However, anyone wishing to consult the permanent or teaching collections in the CSB/SJU Herbarium must obtain permission from the herbarium staff before beginning work. New visitors are requested to sign the guest book upon entering the Herbarium.
When classes are in session, the Herbarium is typically open during normal business hours. Arrangements can be made with the herbarium staff for access at other times.
First‑time visitors planning to study the collections will be given an orientation by a member of the herbarium staff to: (a) the location of our various collections; (b) nature of specimen arrangement; (c) location of available references; (d) location of work areas, equipment and temporary storage spaces; and (e) safety procedures and locations of safety equipment and fire exits.
Smoking and the use of tobacco products is not permitted in the herbarium.
Dissecting microscopes, dissecting tools (probes, razor blades), plant presses, dryers, temporary storage space, annotation and specimen labels, and fragment packets are available for use. Consult with herbarium staff for details.
Specimens must be handled very carefully because they are fragile and valuable. They are expected to last indefinitely and should be treated in a manner that will insure their preservation. Some Do's and Don't's when handling specimens:
Don't turn the specimens in a folder like pages in a book. Don't hold a specimen with one hand while trying to examine parts.
When transporting specimens, place them on a sheet of cardboard or other solid surface.
Never place books or other materials on top of specimens.
Don't squeeze a folder.
Don't slide specimens into or out of folders.
Handle specimens one at a time.
Place specimens face‑up in a pile.
Don't turn specimens upside down or bend, twist, fold, spindle or mutilate.
Don't carry specimens/folders on edge; always hold specimens flat (horizontal) with the specimen side up.
Any loose pieces of plant material contained in a fragment packet accompanying a specimen may be used judiciously, taking care to conserve as much of this material as possible. However, no material is to be removed from intact mounted specimens without permission from the herbarium staff.
Excess plant material remaining after dissections should be placed into the fragment packet accompanying the specimen. If a packet is not already attached to the specimen, one will be provided. The packet and specimen should be given to a member of the herbarium staff who will attach it to the sheet. Specimens used in biochemical, anatomical or other studies should be cited by the CSB/SJU Herbarium accession number. Also, the specimen should be annotated with a label indicating the project in which they were used. We request a copy of any report in which the plant is cited.
Please bring any damaged specimens to the herbarium staff for repair.
Plants in the CSB/SJU Herbarium are arranged phylogenetically, by family, in the following order ‑ algae, fern allies, ferns, gymnosperms, monocots, dicots. The angiosperms are filed according to Cronquist's (1993) most recent revision. The families of fern allies through the dicots are numbered sequentially from 1 to 440. Algal families are numbered separately. Alphabetic and numeric listings of all families represented in the herbarium are posted and available.
Within a family, genera are arranged alphabetically. Within a genus, species are arranged alphabetically.
Specimens are also color‑coded to indicate the origin of the collection. Specimens from Minnesota, indicated by yellow dots, are filed first followed by out‑of‑state plants (orange dots) and finally Chandonnet collections (red dots).
Determine the family to which the specimen belongs (Willis's ‑ Dictionary of the Flowering Plants and Ferns or Mabberly's ‑ Plant Book are useful resources). Consult the alphabetical listing of families posted in various locations in the herbarium to find the number for the family. Find the family in the appropriately numbered case.
If you remove a specimen from the collection to study, it should be re-returned to its proper location or left in the bins for the herbarium staff to re-file. If you choose to re-file a specimen, please take extreme care to avoid misfiling it; a misfiled specimen doesn't exist. When in doubt, leave it for the herbarium staff.
Specimens, live or dried, may not be brought into the herbarium until they have been treated for pests. Contact the herbarium staff if this will be necessary.
Specimens are willingly loaned to any recognized institution. A loan request form will be completed and then the specimens shipped. The borrowed specimens should be stored in pest‑proof cases and be returned in a timely fashion. Loans may be recalled at our discretion and should not be transferred to another herbarium without our permission. We expect specimens used in taxonomic studies will be annotated.
Annotations should be done with permanent ink (or typed), not ball point or pencil, on archival annotation labels. Each label should include the full name of the taxon (including author citation), name of the annotator and the date of annotation. Please do not write directly on the specimen. Annotation labels will be provided by the herbarium staff. Completed annotation labels can be glued directly on the sheets or tucked under a part of the specimen and left for gluing by the herbarium staff.
Specimens will be gladly traded with any interested party. We have an especially rich collection of the spring Minnesota flora for trade.
School groups, classes, garden clubs, or other interested groups are welcome to tour the Herbarium. Contact the curator for details. There is no charge for tours.
The Herbarium offers field trips, short courses, workshops and other activities. Availability, cost, etc. vary depending upon the nature of the activity. These activities are usually publicized via campus media and through herbarium publications.
Herbarium staff are willing, time permitting, to identify plants for interested parties.
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Saint John's University (P.O. Box 2000, Collegeville, Minnesota 56321; 320-363-2011). All rights reserved.
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