Q. What is a type specimen?
A type specimen is a single plant specimen chosen by the botanist who first named and published the species to represent the species as a whole. That specimen then becomes the definitive example of that species. This specimen (as a dried plant or occasionally an illustration) is preserved in a herbarium It can then be consulted when similar species are found or related species need to be identified.
The definition given above is strictly for what is termed a "holotype". There are other categories of type specimens. The NYBG Steere Herbarium website defines these other categories if you are interested:
Courtesy of NYBG Plant Information Service
Contact Us with your Question by Email
Can't find an answer in our FAQ? Try our Plant and Gardening Guides.
OR, a plant expert will answer your individual plant and garden questions if you contact us by email or use the Quick Form below. Click on the link to send us an email: