Botany Department

Our stock of plants, with approximately 15,100 examples of almost 5,800 different species and varieties, is quite considerable. The plants can be seen in display glasshouses with a ground area of some 6,000 square metres. About the same amount of glasshouse space is to be found behind the scenes in the gardening section. It is there where new plants are grown, bred and prepared to go on show.

Wilhelma has valuable collections of plants. These are stocks of living plants that are used for scientific reasons, comparable to a herbarium, which, however, is made up of parts of dried plants. Each single plant of a collection is catalogued and is available for scientific exchange with other botanical gardens worldwide.

The largest plant collections at Wilhelma are that of the orchid group, with 1,200 species and varieties, and that of the succulents, that is the water-storing plants, with 1,400 species and varieties. Other important stocks are the approximately 250 fuchsia species, 500 species of bromeliads (of the pineapple family) and 150 different species of carnivorous plants.
Altogether there are 38 members of staff in the Botany Department: one graduate biologist, two horticultural engineers, six qualified gardeners, 22 gardener's assistants and seven trainees.