Although this type of acquisition is rare, donations may be made by visiting botanists or guest experts. On visits abroad, representatives of a country or a host institution may offer one or more plants to Montréal Botanical Garden staff.
In other cases, there are specialized collectors who dispose of part of their collection. This was the case in 1984, when the Garden acquired the remarkable bonsai collection of Mr. Wu Yee-Sun of Hong Kong. In 2011, the Garden also received part of Mr. Marcel Lecoufle's valuable collection of Madagascar orchids through Société des orchidophiles de Montréal.
These plants usually complete one of the Botanical Garden’s main collections.
Gifts from individuals are rarely accepted. People frequently offer us beautiful specimens, but in most cases, they do not meet the acquisition criteria of the Botanical Garden, which must work with growing space that is increasingly restricted. Here are some of the Garden’s acquisition criteria:
- Details of the plant’s identity must be known (genus, species and cultivar).
- The origin of the plant must be provided.
- The plant must have been acquired in compliance with applicable national and international laws and regulations.
- The plant must complete one of the Botanical Garden’s existing collections.
- The plant must be healthy and free of pests
Based on an article by Denis Barabé and Édith Morin in Quatre-Temps magazine, 17(1), pp.55-58.