Wood Reference Collection

The Wood Reference Collection consists of 21 separate collections of wood block samples and a glass slide collection of timber microstructure sections. Together, they provide a comprehensive reference collection for Queensland timbers, some national and international timbers and their anatomical characteristics.

The Wood Reference Collection is the only public collection for the accurate identification of samples of wood.

It is a unique collection of mainly Queensland timbers, assembled by government botanists collecting plant materials since the 1880s. The collection includes:

  • almost 13,000 wood samples representing 200 plant genera
  • more than 9,000 samples of Queensland tree species
  • almost 5,000 microscope slides of stained timber microstructure sections from 108 plant families
  • slides showing a transverse section, a radial longitudinal section and a tangential longitudinal section for each species.

The wood collection supports requests for wood identification under the:

  • Illegal logging Prohibition Act 2012
  • Illegal Logging Prohibition Regulation 2012, (Department of Agriculture and Water Resources)
  • Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species 
  • Commonwealth Biosecurity Act 2015
  • Queensland Biosecurity Act 2014.

Access to the collection

If you are a researcher, you can access the collection by prior arrangement—contact the curator by phone.

You can read information about the wood collection, standards for managing it and for improving access on the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries Biological Collections portal.