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BukSU opens Botanical Gardens and Herbarium

BukSU President Dr. Oscar B. Cabañelez and Mr. Roberto T. Flores lead the ribbon cutting and unveiling rites on May 18, 2021.

MALAYBALAY CITY (OP-IPS) Bukidnon State University has officially launched the Botanical Gardens and Herbarium on May 18, 2021, which is part of the support services for the offering of two new courses in the Natural Sciences Department.

The university started offering two new courses in the first semester: BS Biology major in Biotechnology and BS Environmental Science. The BGH is also intended to serve the needs of other programs offered by the university.

As part of the launching rites, the university conducted a ribbon cutting and unveiling at the Botanical Gardens and honoring at the BukSU Mini Theatre. The university also launched a coffee table book entitled Bukidnon State University Botanical Gardens: A Pictorial Cyclopedia of

Medicinal Plants. The university also held blessing rites for the Botanical Gardens and Herbarium on May 17,

2021.

The Botanical Gardens was dedicated to the medical practitioners, the late couple Dr. Florencio M. Flores Sr. and Mrs. Vicenta T. Flores, parents of Malaybalay City Mayor Florencio T. Flores Jr. A marker was unveiled at the entrance to the gardens in honor of the late couple.

Mayor Flores attended the honoring rites in the morning, where the family also received copies of the coffee table book.

The rites were attended by university officials and other representatives of the Flores Family.

Dr. Lesley C. Lubos, Director of the Botanical Gardens and Herbarium, said the BGH was created in June 2020, during the pandemic as an initiative of the university president Dr. Oscar B. Cabańelez. Dr. Lubos said his office is responsible for the restoration and preservation of environmental heritage through the conduct of various programs and projects.

The Botanical Gardens, he added, acts as an out-door laboratory for scientific, cultural and academic purposes.

It also facilitates the conservation of indigenous, endemic, endangered and rare species of flora. The gardens also provide living plant materials for instruction, training, and scientific studies and initiates studies on the tropical ecosystems and their biota.

Dr. Lubos said they intend to establish 10 gardens which are found in the area: an indigenous garden, a herbal garden, a flower garden, a Rose garden, an Orchid garden, a fern and fern allies garden, a Bryophytes and Lichens garden, a water garden, a Bromeliad garden, and a succulent and cactus garden. So far, only four of the gardens have been set up.

The University’s Herbarium is also a fundamental resource for all kinds of plant taxonomic studies and botanical pedagogy. It is a repository and conservatory of voucher specimens on which varieties of botanical studies are done.

The Herbarium also facilitates the generation of quantitative baseline data on the distribution and abundance of keystone species; and aids in the assessment and cataloging of all species of economic potential, as commercial species, medicinal herbs, food plants, and others.

The Herbarium helps in using the spores and seeds specimens for conservation and preservation of genetic diversity of plant species using modern technology. It maintains active links to the international network of plant systematic resources. This procedure establishes the steps in the operation of the Herbarium. Dr. Lubos told BukSU TV that one of the goals of the OBGH is to achieve the status as Center for Indigenous Plants in Bukidnon three to five years from now. He added that they also intend to enlist in the International Herbarium Index in the New York Botanical Gardens. (With text from the Office of Botanical Gardens and Herbarium)

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