Angiosperms are commonly called flowering plants they have seeds enclosed within a structure called a carpel. The collections are divided into three geographic areas:
The herbarium covers 98% of the British and Irish native flora and covers a time-span of over two hundred years including collections from J. H. Balfour (1808-1884) and G. C. Druce (1850-1932). The collections are particularly rich in the local flora containing the collections of local prominent botanists such as J. A. Wheldon (1862-1924), Vera Gordon (1916-2003) and Eric Greenwood.
The European herbarium is particularly significant as a repository of material consulted during the preparation of 'Flora Europaea', a project initially based at the University of Liverpool. As a result of the activity generated by this project, it received numerous foreign collections in exchange for material obtained during fieldwork in Europe, particularly from countries bordering the Mediterranean.
This collection is subdivided into the following geographical areas: North Africa; Atlantic Islands; Orient; Asia; Africa; North America; Central America & Caribbean; South America; Australasia and Oceania.
Gymnosperms have no enclosing carpel and the name means 'naked seeds'. This is a small collection of approximately 1000 specimens (mainly British) it includes cycads, conifers and yews.