The collection of the National Herbarium of New South Wales consists of around 1.2 million plant specimens. The majority are from within Australia. It is the largest collection in the world of the plants of New South Wales. The collection consists of plant specimens gathered by staff, as well as specimens from donations and exchange with other herbaria in Australia and overseas.

The collection is used for research, reference and documenting the flora of Australia, especially New South Wales flora.

The fungi from NSW has been transferred to the New South Wales Plant Pathology Herbarium (DAR).

The Australian and international wood collection from the former State Forests of New South Wales Herbarium (NSWF) have been transferred to NSW.

Statistics taken (September 2010) from: (CHAH Last updated: Sep 2006)

The collection was established in 1896 and continues to the present.

Taxonomic range

Flowering plants, conifers, cycads, ferns, bryophytes, lichens, macroalgae.

Kingdoms covered include: Plantae.

Geographic range

Worldwide, with emphasis on Australia, especially New South Wales.

Australian states covered include: New South Wales.

Number of specimens in the collection

The estimated number of specimens in the National Herbarium of New South Wales is 1,198,515.

Of these 630,000 are databased. This represents 52.6 % of the collection.

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


The National Herbarium of New South Wales contains these significant collections:

  • Historical Collections - R.T. Baker, J. Banks & D. Solander, W. Bäuerlen, E. Betche, W.F. Blakely, J.L. Boorman, E.F. Constable, A.D.E. Elmer, W.V. Fitzgerald, C. King, A.H.S. Lucas, J.H. Maiden, E.D. Merrill, G.I. Playfair, F.A. Rodway, F.R.R. , H.M.R.Rupp, Schlechter, J.W. Vickery, W.W. Watts, T. Whitelegge.

Usage statistics

Metadata last updated on 2016-07-01 11:56:04.0


Banks and Solander Banksia specimen

Photo courtesy of Botanic Gardens Trust Sydney


The Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney
New South Wales 2000

(02) 9231 8111


Manager Collections
email this contact

Dr Brett Summerell
Director Science and Conservation
phone: (02) 9231 8113
phone: (02) 9241 3892
email this contact


Member of Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria (CHAH)

Digitised records available through the Atlas

The National Herbarium of New South Wales has an estimated 1,198,515 specimens.
The collection has databased 52.6 % of these (630,000 records).

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

Click to view all records for the National Herbarium of New South Wales

No records are available for viewing in the Atlas.

Images from this collection