Herbarium Doubles its Footprint within Historic Birge Hall

The Wisconsin State Herbarium has taken possession of >4,000 sq ft formerly occupied by the UW Biology Library, and located directly below the existing herbarium in historic Birge Hall.  This will allow for a near doubling of collection space, and represents an unparalleled opportunity in the herbarium’s rich history.  Herbarium staff are now working toward consolidation and expansion of the institution’s disparate cryptogamic collections (i.e., algae, fungi, lichens, and bryophytes), which will be housed along with other collections and functions on the B1 level of Birge Hall’s 1983 southeast corner extension.  Vascular plants and most of the Herbarium’s library will remain on the first floor. WIS reached its carrying capacity decades ago, and has been forced to house many of its world class collections in suboptimal hallways and rooms on at least five floors within 100 year old Birge Hall.  The ongoing consolidation and expansion taking place this yer will greatly enhance WIS’ ability to use some of its most underappreciated but most important collections for research and teaching.