The Buller Greenhouse is a facility that has importance that extends far beyond its home in the Department of Biological Sciences. It is a rare educational greenhouse, with diverse collections of plants grown not for their economic value, or aesthetic beauty (although many have these attributes) but for their ability to bring our plant courses to life. The plants here have jobs, helping students understand evolution, anatomy, diversity, physiology, adaptation and many other topics in ways that pictures in a book or on a screen cannot. For the students in plant related courses, having access to this precious resource is akin to studying animals at a University that has a zoo on campus!
It is not just the Department’s students that benefit from the greenhouse, however; it is open to the public most weekday mornings. Inside, visitors are welcome to explore seven themed rooms housing for example, medicinal, carnivorous, desert, or tropical plants. It’s an inspiring place for inquiring, curious minds of all ages and walks of life.
Outreach activities range from offering student-volunteer propagated plants to those wanting to learn about plants and their care, to greenhouse experiences with small children’s groups to large events like Science Rendezvous.
Our Spring and fall plant giveaways are very popular events that attract hundreds of plant enthusiasts, many of whom keep in touch with the activities of the greenhouse through our Facebook page “Friends of the Buller Greenhouse”.
The patio table in the front room is open to those wishing to study, dream, create, relax or meet. Many people feel something special when in the presence of this abundance and diversity of plant life, and so the greenhouse is a favourite destination of writers, visual artists and musicians. Thanks to the Faculty of Science’s investment in the collection, there is always something new, unusual and exciting germinating!
Contact: Carla Zelmer, Manager or visit our Facebook page.