The botanical herbarium at Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University has been enlisted in the World Botanical Garden in New York NYBG under the international symbol (PNUH). As it is considered the seventh local herbarium registered at the international level representing long-term investment to document and maintain plant species that represent (Flora of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia), which goes in line with the Kingdom’s strategies as well as its Vision 2030 towards environment and restoration of vegetation.
The herbarium, which is considered as (private museums in which plants are preserved dried in a certain way on paperboard as a record to be referred to in accordance with known standard and agreed upon method. As each model carries sample identification card that includes the scientific classification, plant origin, date and name of the harvest person and name of the identified researcher). Approximately, 4,500 plant specimens were collected through field trips in various parts of the Kingdom, to preserve wild plants and their seeds, especially valuable, rare and endangered types including medicinal, pastoral, aromatic and toxic ones.
The herbarium obtained some new species registered for the first time in Saudi Flora that were defined, scientifically classified and preserved in a dried form on paperboard or in moist form in chemical solutions on which all basic field information are documented.
The herbarium assists in conducting many research studies, perhaps the most prominent of which is the research project supported by College of Science Research Center, entitled “Taxonomic studies on plant species in herbarium of College of Science at Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University”, by the principal researcher and founder of the Herbarium, Assistant Professor of Molecular Plant in Biology Department, Dr. Naglaa Al-Shayae.
The project, which is supervised by Biology Department, College of Science at Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University, aims to identify, classify and sort plant specimens in Biology Department, and to organize multiple field trips to different environments and regions in Riyadh and other areas within the Kingdom to collect plants and provide the Herbarium with new species. In addition to create taxonomic reference guide for all plant species to establish a true herbarium at the university. She also had many societal contributions, such as activating week of the environment, receiving visits by school students to College of Science, support graduation research, and environmental courses and flora.
Dr. Naglaa Al-Shayae denoted that the Herbarium is in the process of establishing ancillary units, seeking to employ specialized expertise in plant classification and working on creating an online database that benefits researchers throughout the world.
The herbarium was established as a scientific initiative by Dr. Naglaa bint Abdulrahman Al-Shayae in 1434 AH, and it went through several stages, culminated with registration at the international level.