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With more than 5 million specimens, the Harvard University Herbaria (HUH) is the tenth largest herbarium in the world. Along with the botanical libraries (over 290,000 volumes) it forms the world's largest university-associated botanical endeavor. HUH includes six separately founded herbaria, each focused on specific groups and strengths that are managed as one entity: Herbarium of the Arnold Arboretum (A), Gray Herbarium (GH), Farlow Herbarium (FH), Oakes Ames Orchid Herbarium (AMES), Economic Herbarium of Oakes Ames (ECON), New England Botanical Club Herbarium (NEBC). Other collections include: the Bailey-Wetmore Wood Collection and the Botanical Museum Collection including paleobotanical collections.
HUH maintains an extensive searchable Database of specimen data in support of making the collections globally accessible, with emphasis on our type holdings, as well as a growing repository of digital images. Herbarium specimens are used for understanding the diversity and distribution of plants, and their evolutionary relationships (e.g., by using DNA extracted from herbarium specimens).