Section Vascular plants

Araceae have long been a focus of research at the Munich herbaria (M and MSB) and botanical garden. This ancient family of monocots comprises 117 genera and 4,100 to 5,400 species. The Munich herbaria house more than 4,500 specimens (about 350 types) from all continents. Extensive living collections were brought together by Dr. Josef Bogner, who worked at the Munich Botanical Garden from 1969 until his retirement in 2002. His research focused on monocots, and especially aroids, with fieldwork in India, Sri Lanka, Southern China, Vietnam, Sumatra, Borneo, Australia, West Africa, and Brazil. From each trip, he brought back herbarium material and, where possible, also living material. Dr. Josef Bogner published 120 papers, discovered 140 new taxa, including 8 fossil plants, and is a coauthor on the standard work „The Genera of Araceae“ (1997). For information about types or other herbarium specimens, contact Dr. Hans-Joachim Esser. For information about our current living collections of Araceae, please, contact Dr. Andreas Gröger.

Building on the strengths of the collections, the lab of the current director, Prof. Dr. Susanne Renner, has used molecular-phylogenetic and molecuar-cytogenetic methods to infer Araceae relationships, biogeography, and chromosome evolution (doctoral research, and resulting publications, of Natalie Cusimano, Lars Nauheimer, and Aretuza Sousa).

Collaboration with Peter Boyce and Dr. Wong Sin Yeng, associate researchers of the Botanische Staatssammlung München, is further strengthening Munich’s Araceae focus. Most of the critical historical aroid literature is available on DropBox – please email Peter Boyce for details. The International Aroid Society has a lot of additional information. A large collection of freely downloadable images, including many Asian species, types, and protologues, is available.