A herbarium is a museum of preserved plants that are used for botanical research. Each herbarium specimen is made up of a dried plant, mounted on archival paper, and affixed with a label providing descriptive data. Herbaria across the globe provide a permanent record of the diversity of the Earth's flora.
Peter Fritsch, Ph.D.
Vice President of Research / Director of the Herbarium
The BRIT herbarium is open for public use by appointment, from 10 am to 4 pm, Tuesday through Friday. Please contact us beforehand to make sure someone will be available to orient you and assist you if necessary. BRIT is closed on most national holidays.
Mistletoe brings to mind a be-ribboned bouquet hung beneath doorways to catch unsuspecting party-goers in a kissing trap, but the evergreen plant has a long history in Western holiday tradition. The original mistletoe of Greek and Celtic traditions, Viscum album , was a symbol of masculinity, vitality, health, and fertility, and its usage as a treatment for barrenness in human and animals is reportedly very ancient. The majority of mistletoes are obligate hemi-parasites, meaning they cannot live without a host but do engage in some photosynthesis with their foliage. The connection between mistletoe and the Winter Solstice was likely made as the species remains evergreen and bears fruit throughout winter, creating festive decoration is the coldest of winter wonderlands. Depiction of a Druid...
The poinsettia is a quintessential part of typical holiday decor. Its bright red, burgundy, or white foliage are common sights in locations both private and public throughout the winter months, from apartment balconies and church altars to bank lobbies and coffeehouses.
FORT WORTH, TEXAS (July 3, 2017) - The Botanical Research Institute of Texas (BRIT®) is pleased to announce the nonprofit has been selected to receive almost half a million plant specimens that have been orphaned by the University of Louisiana at Monroe (ULM). This acquisition will increase the total number of specimens housed by the institute to more than 1.3 million and will place BRIT’s herbarium among the top ten (in specimens housed) in the United States. The ULM collection represents more than 99 percent of the species in Louisiana’s vascular flora and is considered to be the state’s most complete record of plants. “BRIT’s herbarium was designed to house over two million plant specimens,” said Ed Schneider, president and executive director of BRIT. “Orphaned herbarium collections suc...
The New Zealand Kauri – Agathis australis – is a truly magnificent tree, revered in New Zealand by the native Maori and Europeans alike. The Kauri’s ancestors lived over 130 million years ago – making it one of the most ancient trees in the world!
Just imagine trying to keep up with 25 energetic, enthusiastic, inquisitive high school students for a week in the middle of a hot, dry summer in the semi-arid country around Junction, Texas. Well, I accepted that challenge even though it had been 35 years since the last time I did it!