Seminars and events

The Queensland Herbarium hosts free public seminars at the Brisbane Botanic Gardens at Toowong. They are usually held on the second Monday of each month during February to November from noon until 1pm in the FM Bailey conference room in the Herbarium building. Additional seminars are programmed so please check the schedule on this page. You don’t need to register for any seminar, just turn up on the day.

9 April 2018

Forest Restoration and Climate Experimentation (FoRCE)

Associate Professor Andy Marshall (University of Sunshine Coast and University of York, UK -

FoRCE is a pantropical experiment, with permanent field plots in Tanzania and Australia. It aims to measure and understand long-term tropical forest dynamics and interactions with climate, human disturbance and experimental management. Use is made of permanent sampling plots, hemispherical photographs, experimental vine removal and remote sensing.

14 May 2018

Defining the native and naturalised flora for the Australian continent

Rod Fensham (Queensland Herbarium/Dept. of Biological Sciences, University of Queensland)

11 June 2018

Ernest James (Kalbar) Smith – Nature notes

Darryn Schneider (Queensland Naturalists Club)

Ernest James Smith, a plumber by trade, had an extraordinary interest in the natural world. It led him to wander widely around his home at Kalbar in the Fassifern District of Queensland, in pursuit of knowledge and specimens. 107 of Ernest’s botanical specimens (1933-57) are housed at the Queensland Herbarium. One species collected was thought to have become extinct following its discovery, only to be rediscovered many years later following a burn of its habitat. Ernest wrote extensively about nature in the Fassifern Guardian newspaper and scrap booked his articles into disused almanacs of the day. He was an enthusiastic councillor of the Queensland Naturalist’s Club and served as president. Nicknamed “Kalbar” Smith by the Queensland Naturalists, he was honoured as a life member. In this seminar Darryn will take a close look at Kalbar’s wanderings onto Mt French, Mt Edwards, Mt Greville and other places where he gathered important plant specimens, in an attempt to elaborate on where specimens were collected and the stories that go with them. Darryn will also be revealing the invaluable scrap books that Ernest James kept.

9 July 2018

A Herbarium Library: much more than the sum of its parts

Helen Cole (Honorary Associate, Queensland Herbarium)

Helen will speak on the Queensland Herbarium Library and display a selection of its bountiful book treasures. As a certified book nerd she will also show the many different histories that are hidden within the pages of these magnificent volumes. Helen resigned from her position as Coordinator of the Australian Library of Art (ALA) at the State Library of Queensland in 2017 after 30 years with the Library. She was responsible for developing the Artists Books Collection within the ALA to become one of the largest and most highly regarded within Australia, and acquired many important botanical works for the non-Queensland Rare Book Collection. Since 2015 she has been an Honorary Research Associate with the Queensland Herbarium working with the Rare Book and Archive Collections.

13 August 2018

Taxonomic clarification of the critically endangered Notelaea ipsviciensis

Gillian Brown and Laura Simmonds (Queensland Herbarium)

Notelaea ipsviciensis (Oleaceae) is a critically endangered species restricted to the Ipswich area of South East Queensland and has a very low total number of mature individuals recorded in the wild. It is considered to have close affinities to N. ovata, differing in leaf shape and venation pattern but there are several other species of Notelaea located close by, including N. lloydii and N. macrocarpa.  There have been several suggestions that N. ipsviciensis may be a hybrid but no genetic studies have investigated this.  The Queensland Department of Transport and Main Roads commissioned this study to determine whether N. ipsviciensis plants in the wild comprise a hybrid or distinct species. To do this we also aimed to build a phylogeny of Notelaea to determine the placement of N. ipsviciensis in the genus. A new method, RAPDseq, was used to generate SNP data for phylogenetic and population genetic analyses.  The results of these will be presented, the taxonomic nature of N. ipsviciensis will be clarified and conservation implications discussed.

10 September 2018

Conservation research through academic partnerships in Sulawesi, Indonesia

Melinda Laidlaw (Queensland Herbarium)

8 October 2018

Measuring landscape functionality from different resolution satellite imagery

Ernest Dunwoody (DNRM, Toowoomba)

SPOT 3, Landsat5 and MODIS Imagery have been used to measure functionality of sub-catchments within a rangeland water shed of the NQ dry Tropics (west of Charters Towers). In this seminar Ernest will describe how imagery of different native resolutions and adjusted resolutions capture landscape functionality (i.e., the capacity of the landscape to retain soil, water and nutrients).

12 November 2018

The Arctic and Antarctica – the same but different

Ralph Dowling (Queensland Herbarium)

To conclude the seminar series for 2018 Ralph Dowling will give an overview of the Arctic and Antarctica regions, their discovery, exploration, natural history and introduce some characters associated with these regions whose names will be familiar to scientists and the public.