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Biological Sciences Libraries


Plenty of those – 16,000 at the last count! However, since research and teaching are now far less book-based, we have relatively few newer items, except in the subject areas related to ecology. Other subject strengths are taxonomic works and floras. So, whilst you may not find a large number of recent text-books, we do hold the 'classics' and may well hold an older item that is hard to find in other libraries. 

All the books in the Plant Sciences Library are represented on the online catalogue, which is searched using iDiscover. Monographs, floras and taxonomic works are more likely to be found in the Cory and Herbarium Library in the Sainsbury Lab. 


The University subscribes to a wide range of electronic journals that can be accessed from wherever you are, as long as you have a valid Raven ID. Visit the University Library's website more information about accessing online content.

Quite a few plant-related journals are still taken by the Plant Sciences Library in paper format so do not assume that because a journal is not available electronically, that immediately means it is not available at all in any of the University Libraries.

Furthermore, the Plant Sciences Library holds a very large number of back-runs of old, sometimes rare, titles. All are represented on iDiscover, but full details of holdings are not given.

If you still cannot find an article that you need, let us know and we may be able to find it for you from another source.


Unfortunately there is no systematically-collected, organised ‘Department Archive’. It would be more accurate to say that some material has by chance remained in the Department. This varied group of items is not represented on any catalogue as yet : Lists are being compiled, but are not in a good enough state to be disseminated. Please see our separate Archives page for some examples of what we do hold.

Some items recognised as being of historical interest have been sent to the University Library – Please consult ArchiveSearch, the catalogue of the University Archives for your area of interest.