Visit to Kew Royal Botanic Gardens
October 21th 2016
Kew, London, England
In the morning we visited Kew Royal Botanic Gardens. We had made an appointment with Dr. Timothy M.A. Utteridge, Director of Kew Herbarium. The first session was presentation by Dr. Timothy M.A. Utteridge and Dr. William Baker. Dr. Timothy M.A. Utteridge explained about Kew Science Strategy 2020 that includes 5 years (2016-2020). The priorities of the strategy are document and conduct research in plants and fungal, curate Kew’s collection, and disseminate scientific knowledge of plants and fungi. Kew has two kinds of conservation, they are laboratory and living collection. Kew has moved from building-based structure into team-based structure. Dr. William Baker delivered a presentation about Completing the plant and fungal tree of life.
The second session was Kew tour. We visited the herbarium, labs, greenhouses, and also the living collection in Kew. All research in Kew is integrated to one another. Ruth P. Clark and Andre Schuiteman guided us in herbarium. Ruth have specialized in Leguminosae taxa and Andre Schuiteman concerned in Orchidaceae group. In the beginning, Andre explained about the central role of herbarium specimen. Besides that, he showed us some specimen with the type. Type and general herbarium specimen placed together or not separately in different places. After that, Ruth introduced us about new herbarium room in Kew. The new herbarium room is already regulated temperature and humidity. She described us in there about storage method conducted by Kew so far. In addition, he explained about how to overcome the problem of the herbarium specimens from insects attack.
After visited to herbarium, we moved to Jodrell Laboratory. Lisa Pokorny guided us for introduced some equipment and room in there. She intoduced us some room in Jodrell laboratory, such as DNA and tissue collection room, tissue preparation lab, DNA extraction room, Sackler Phylogenomic lab, Microscope room, and main anatomy lab. She also introduced some advanced equipment in Kew, such as equipment in flow cytometry, DNA sequencer, spectrofotometer, and microtome.
In the last tour, Andre Schuiteman invited us to orchid living collections in the Kew greenhouse. Every collection placed in the greenhouse with temperature and humidity are adjusted to natural conditions. This is interesting point from Kew greenhouses. Besides orchid collections, Andre showed us some succulent and cacti collections.
After presentation and Kew Tour with Kew researchers, we explored Kew area unaccompanied by them. We visited to The Hive, Palm House, and ended up in the Kew Garden Shop.