Te Papa’s herbarium (WELT) contains some 300 000 dried plant specimens. Founded in 1865, it holds a wealth of historical collections, with more type specimens of New Zealand plants than any other institution in the country.

The plant groups covered are marine macro-algae (seaweeds), lichens, liverworts, mosses, lycophytes, ferns, and seed plants (but not fungi). The focus is on plants that are native or introduced to New Zealand. Ancillary collections include fossils, wood samples, botanical art, images of New Zealand types held overseas, curiosities, and extensive New Zealand botanical literature.

Images of most types and many historical specimens are available from:

The collection was established in 1865 and continues to the present.

Taxonomic range

Number of specimens and samples in the collection

The estimated number of specimens and samples in the Herbarium of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa is 300,000.

Click the Records & Statistics tab to access those database records that are available through the atlas.


The Herbarium of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa contains these significant collections:

  • Principal collections - B.C. Aston, J. Buchanan, L. Cockayne, W. Colenso, T. Kirk, C. Knight, W. Martin, J.H. McMahon, W.R.B. Oliver, D. Petrie, and G.O.K. Sainsbury
  • Other well-represented collectors - N.M. Adams, P.J. Beveridge, P.J. Brownsey, W.D. Burke, D. Glenny, B.G. Hamlin, C.H. Hay, P.N. Johnson, W.A. Nelson, C.C. Ogle, L.R. Perrie, B. Polly, and B.V. Sneddon
  • Other significant collectors - J. Banks & D. Solander, S. Berggren, A. Cunningham, W.H. Harvey, J.D. Hooker, V.W. Lindauer, and H.H. Travers
  • Incorporated herbaria - most of Victoria University of Wellington’s WELTU

Usage statistics

Metadata last updated on 2015-06-16 12:48:32.0


55 Cable Street
New Zealand

+64 4 381 7000


Mr Antony Kusabs
Collection Manager
phone: +64 4 381 7089
email this contact

Dr Carlos Lehnebach
phone: +64 4 381 7184
email this contact

Dr Leon Perrie
phone: +64 4 381 7261
email this contact


Member of Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria (CHAH)

Contributors to this page

Digitised records available through the Atlas

The Herbarium of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa has an estimated 300,000 specimens and samples.

Looking up... the number of records that can be accessed through the Atlas of Living Australia.

Click to view all records for the Herbarium of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa

No records are available for viewing in the Atlas.

Images from this collection