BBG’s Plant Collection

Search the Collection

Most species, subspecies, varieties, hybrids, and cultivars currently grown at BBG can be found in this searchable database.

About BBG's Plant Records

As of March 15th, 2014, BBG's Plant Information Records System contained 39,463 accessions, of which 17,458 were current. Additional information held in the database includes source, date of acquisition, synonyms, authorities, number of plants received, original seed or parent accession number, status of plant, status of the taxon in the wild, taxonomic verification, flowering times, and whether the plant was received as seed, cutting, or rooted material. We are missing accessions from 2010 to 2012 in the database, and are currently updating these from accession books.

The following statistics from the database are current as of March 15th, 2014:

Accessions at Brooklyn Botanic Garden

All accessions 39,463
Living accessions 17,458
Wild origin accessions 120
Garden origin specimens 35,423
Unknown origin specimens 4,040
Total number of individual specimens 54,461

Labels and Accession Numbers

Currently, most living plants at BBG are given an eight-digit accession number. The first four digits indicate the year the material was received, and the last four are sequential numbers starting with 0001 for the first plant of the year (for example, 20110001). Prior to the year 2001, all plants received a six-digit accession number. The first two digits indicate the year the material was received and the last four are sequential numbers for that year, starting with 0001. Plants with accession numbers starting with "X" represent plants whose origins are unknown. Short-lived plants or temporary display plants, such as annuals and tulips, are currently not accessioned.

Plants on public display are given a label with the plant's common name, scientific name, cultivar or trademark name, common family name, and scientific family name. Also included are its native distribution information and accession number.

Periodic checks assure that plant labels remain with the correct plants and are in good condition. Priority is given to material of known wild provenance, genera that BBG specializes in (forsythia, magnolia, Japanese flowering cherries, and wisteria), taxa listed in the 1997 IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants (Walter & Gillett, 1998) and long-lived woody plants. In support of the curation of the living collection, Brooklyn Botanic Garden maintains a herbarium of approximately 297,000 preserved specimens, including approximately 7,000 specimens collected from the grounds, and a botanical library of approximately 56,500 volumes.

How to Request Material from BBG's Living Collections

Requests from botanical and horticultural institutions for plant material for research or educational purposes should be addressed to:

Director of Plant Collections, Brooklyn Botanic Garden
1000 Washington Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11225
[email protected]

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