The botanical herbarium in general is a group of plant samples, which have been pressed, dried and fixed on a paper sheet with specific dimensions and in a form that matches the live image of the plant, then its detailed definition is written on the paper sheet, then stored in an arranged form either alphabetically or according to one of the approved classification systems for the plant. 

The origin of the herbarium is as a collection of dried botanical models fixed on paper sheets to be as a reference by the Italian scientist (Ghini 1556-1490), then the scientist (Linnaeus) pasted these models on separated papers and sorted them horizontally in a form that is mostly close to what is currently followed. Thanks to Linnaeus, the herbarium became an international system in the second half of the eighteenth century. 

The herbarium, which represents a special type of museum, is considered as a data bank with a huge stock of primary data. Each sample includes a measurable information about the plants’ area from which it was collected, its density, and the section it follows. The botanical collection is also of great importance as a center of education and research. Whereas, specimens preserved in the herbarium can represent the only record of the original distribution of the plant. Ecologists use such data to track changes in climate and human impacts. 

“Mazhar Herbarium has been well established in May, 2009, containing 1000 specimens collected from many historical gardens and nurseries. Mazhar herbarium is continuously growing up and extending to include an extensive botanical record. Since 2020, the museum of Mazhar herbarium has been established to exhibit natural models of plant specimens” 

We have three herbarium in Mazhar Botanic Garden

1- Herbarium Mazhar containing more than 4000 cultivated specimens.

2-Herbarium of the Botanical Garden in Sidi Heneish, containing more than 2500 cultivated specimens. and they are all alphabetically arranged in their cupboards.

3- As for the important herbarium that was acquired by Arch. Shehab, which is Dr. Lofty Boulos’ herbarium, it contains 6,600 specimens. This herbarium is arranged in the cupboards according to the plant families (140 families). We discovered about 100 of 100-year-old specimens that were given by the botanist *Simpson to Dr. Lofty when he was at Kew in the beginning of 1970s. We thank Eng. Shehab for taking care of these archaeological samples and placing some of them in beautifully shaped frames. * Simpson (1890- 1974): An English Economic Botanist at the Cotton Research Board’s Sections- Giza. His herbarium collection included (5800 sheets from Egypt, 1580 from Sudan, 2900 from Jordan, Morocco, Algeria, Libya & Tunisia, In addition to 18100 of British & Irish plants and 1300 of Continental European plants).