Libraries' Overview

The Harvard University Herbaria house five comprehensive libraries managed collectively as the Botany Libraries. These non-circulating reference collections are world-wide in scope and include many rare copies and special editions. Each of the libraries have archives that document the associated specimen collections.

The Arnold Arboretum (A) in Cambridge specializes in the identification and classification of Old World plants with emphasis on Asia. Subject areas cover systematic botany, floras of the Old World, taxonomy, dendrology, early forestry, and other materials on woody plants.  This library's holdings  appear in HOLLIS as Botany Arnold (Cambr.)

The Arnold Arboretum Horticultural Library in Jamaica Plain (AAH) supports the living collections.  This library's holdings appear in HOLLIS as Botany Arboretum.

The Economic Botany Library of Oakes Ames (Econ) specializes in materials related to economic botany or the commercial exploitation of plants. Subject areas cover ethnobotany, medicinal plants, hallucinogens and narcotics, crop plants, edible and poisonous plants, herbals and other rare pre-Linnean works, and Linneana. This library's holdings  appear in HOLLIS as Botany Econ. Botany.

The Farlow Reference Library of Cryptogamic Botany (FH) specializes in organisms that reproduce by spores, without flowers or seeds. Subject areas cover fungi, bryophytes, lichens, algae, and pre-Linnean works. The library's holdings appear in HOLLIS as Botany Farlow Library.

The Gray Herbarium Library (GH) specializes in the identification and classification of  New World plants with emphasis on North American plants. Subject areas cover systematic botany, taxonomy, floras of the New World, bibliography, the history of botany, and pre-Linnean works. The library's holdings appear in HOLLIS as Botany Gray Herbarium.

The Oakes Ames Orchid Library (AMES) specializes exclusively on the identification and classificiation of the orchid family or Orchidaceae.  The library's holdings appear in HOLLIS as Botany Ames Orchid.