Usage Policy

Portland State University (HPSU)


Location: Science Building 1 (1025 SW Mill St., at corner of 10th Ave.), Rm 421


Hours: Monday-Friday, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, by appointment only. Please contact the Interim Director, Mitch Cruzan, for an appointment at (503) 725-8391 or cruzan@pdx.edu. After-hours use may also be arranged for researchers. 


Staff:     John Christy, Herbarium Manager. (503) 725-3872, john.christy@pdx.edu http://orbic.pdx.edu/index.html

             Diane Bland, Curatorial Assistant. (503) 725-8759


Usage Policies


Guest Book


All herbarium visitors are requested to sign the Guest Book.


Loan Policies


Loans may be made to recognized herbaria and botanical institutions engaged in taxonomic research.The director of the borrowing institution assumes responsibility for the care and return of specimens. Loans are made for a period of one year, with extensions possible with the permission of the director. Loaned specimens must not be removed from the borrowing institution, and they may not be transferred from one institution to another without written permission and agreement of all parties concerned.


All loaned specimens should be annotated as fully as possible before being returned. Annotations should be typewritten or handwritten legibly on acid-free archival paper with indelible ink (no ballpoint pens or felt marker pens), and should be affixed to the herbarium sheet adjacent to the original label.


Destructive sampling for microscopy, DNA extraction, or other destructuve analyses may be permitted ONLY after receiving permission. Requests should be made in writing and include the sampling protocol, a specific list of the specimens in question, and the goals of the research project. Any specimen that is destructively sampled should include this information on the annotation label.




It is expected that loans of specimens from HPSU  will be acknowledged in any resulting publications, reports, or presentations. We also would appreciate receiving a copy of any such publications or reports.


Pest Control


No dried specimens may be brought into the main collection (Rm 421A) until they have been sterilized by freezing. There is a freezer available for use in the anteroom of the Herbarium.


Procedures for Examining Herbarium Specimens


  1. Visitors unfamiliar with standard herbarium practices must receive training from a staff member prior to use.
  2. Cabinet doors should be closed immediately following the removal of folders and remain closed during the time that specimens are being examined.
  3. Please seek assistance if you are not sure where to refile a specimen or folder.
  4. Specimens must be treated with the utmost care.  Our expectation is that each specimen shall last forever.  Good practices include:
    1. No removal of materials (e.g., for microscopy or molecular analysis) is permitted without the express permission of the Director.
    2. Specimens should always be handled so that they remain “face-up”.
    3. Any material that accidentally becomes detached should be placed in a fragment folder.  Please alert a staff person if a fragment folder is needed.
    4. Specimens may be photographed under the supervision of herbarium staff.
    5. Specimens may not be photocopied.  In exceptional circumstances, requests for photocopies may be made to the Director.




We are extremely grateful for any annotations that are made to the identification or taxonomy of specimens. If you wish to make an annotation, please contact a staff member for instructions and materials for making an archival annotation label.


Requests for Data


Data for many of our specimens are available through the Oregon Flora Project atlas Additional specimens at HPSU will be imaged and databased in 2011 in collaboration with the Consortium of PNW Herbaria and the Oregon Flora Project.