Plant Identification

As a service to the citizens of North Carolina, the herbarium of North Carolina State University (NCSC) provides identification of unknown plant specimens submitted through an agent of the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service or directly to NCSC (see address below).

Flow chart describing to whom samples should be sent For weed identification and control requests, send to control specialists Other requests, send to herbarium For plant disease diagnosis, send to Plant Disease and Insect Clinic

Notes on specimen preparation (for material sent to the Herbarium)

It is important that information given be as complete as possible to facilitate the identification of unknowns. Specimens should be of as high quality as possible and include stems with leaves attached, basal leaves (if any), flowers, fruits, bulbs, rhizomes, tubers, etc. In the absence of a plant press, specimens can be prepared by (1) pressing and drying in a fold of newspaper weighted with a board or heavy box for a few days, or (2) blotting excess water from the specimen, placing in a plastic bag, and shipping immediately. Specimens should be numbered as needed and carefully packed to prevent breaking or crushing of the plant. A separate form must be enclosed for each specimen submitted. Material submitted directly to NCSC can be sent to: Herbarium (NCSC) Department of Plant and Microbial Biology, Campus Box 7612 North Carolina State University Raleigh, NC 27695-7612