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    Accessioning and Exchange Policy

The University and Jepson Herbaria are constantly growing collections, reflecting the on-going growth in our knowledge of plant diversity and distribution. New acquisitions result primarily from 1) in-house staff and student collections, 2) standing exchange programs with other herbaria world-wide, 3) specimens sent as gift-for-identification to in-house researchers, and 4) gifts from a diversity of sources, especially non-academic professionals and native plant enthusiasts. The latter often serve as our most valued source of new records from under collected areas in the western United States.

In general, the Jepson Herbarium (JEPS) accessions only vascular plants from California, whereas the University Herbarium (UC) covers all plant groups world-wide. Gifts of California plants will be deposited in the Jepson Herbarium unless the donor specifies otherwise.

All exchange is through the University Herbarium. At present we are not soliciting new exchange programs, due to limitations in our capacity to generate and process outgoing material, consisting primarily of specimens from the western United States.

To minimize redundancy of specimens in the San Francisco Bay Area, we have a non-duplication policy with the California Academy of Sciences (CAS/DS). Exceptions are made for types and other particularly significant collections.

Because of limited specimen processing resources and storage capacity, specimens submitted for accessioning in the University of California at Berkeley herbaria should generally meet the criteria detailed as follows:

  1. Be well-prepared, with sufficient material to occupy a standard herbarium sheet (unless rarity dictates otherwise). Extraneous plants and dirt should be removed (note associates and substrate on label if relevant, not as part of the specimen!). For more information about how specimens are mounted on herbarium sheets, see the video How To Mount Plants provided by the California Academy of Sciences Department of Botany.
  2. Possess fertile structures and/or other critical identifying features appropriate to the plant group.
  3. Be accompanied by ready-to-mount labels (permanent ink on acid free paper) with complete label data.
  4. Be accompanied by electronic data corresponding in content to the printed-out label and capable of being converted to our data base format.
  5. Fall within the following desiderata:
    • Uncommon or otherwise interesting plants from California. This includes range extensions, material from under-collected areas, and significant recollections or similar vouchers.
    • Good collections from the western United States, especially if uncommon or otherwise interesting.
    • Specimens from Latin America, including Mexico and the West Indies.
    • Specimens from Asia and the Pacific Basin, including Australasia.
    • Specimens from Mediterranean and other arid regions worldwide.
    • Representatives of unusual plant groups worldwide.
    • Representatives of groups under investigation by UC-JEPS staff (e.g., pteridophytes, Compositae, herbaceous Rosaceae)
    • Cultivated material only if 1) from the Bay Area or 2) the locality of the wild source population is indicated and falls within the above desiderata.
    • Vouchers for studies undertaken at UC-Berkeley. (In the case of large voucher sets, a representative subset will be fully accessioned and cross-referenced to the remainder, which will be kept unmounted in a voucher storage area).
    • Unidentified specimens from interesting areas and earlier times, as long as good locality data are present (accepted on a case-by-case basis).
Specimens submitted by mail for accession should be addressed to:
Andrew Doran
University of California, Berkeley
University and Jepson Herbaria
1001 Valley Life Sciences Building #2465
Berkeley, CA 94720-2465