Department History


John Davidson arrives in BC from Scotland. Appointed Provincial Botanist and required to teach at the "new university". 


Davidson starts a botanical garden and arboretum at the BC Colony Farm in Coquitlam. This garden provides the initial stock for the UBC Botanical Garden on the Point Grey campus. 


UBC opens its doors with three faculties; Arts and Science, Applied Science, and Agriculture (link to UBC Archives.) John Davidson, former Provincial Botanist, establishes the UBC Herbarium. 


Appointment of Andrew H. Hutchinson, MA (McMaster), PhD (Chicago), as Assistant Professor of Botany. 

1921 to 1922

Department of Botany established with the following teaching faculty: 

  • Andrew H. Hutchinson, MA (McMaster), PhD (Chicago), Associate Professor of Botany 
  • John Davidson, FLS, FBSE, Botanist in charge of Herbarium and Botanical Gardens 
  • J.W. Eastham, BSc (Edin), Lecturer in Plant Pathology 
  • H.A. Dunlop, BA (BC), Assistant in Botany and Zoology 

Vladimir Krajina (former Secretary of State in the post-WWII government of Czechoslovakia and former Professor of Charles University in Prague) arrived at UBC. Developed the Biogeoclimactic Zone system for BC forests and led the lobby to establish BC's Ecological Reserves. 


Department of Botany renamed Botany and Biology. G.H. Neil Towers appointed as Head. 


Robert F. Scagel elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada for his unique and pioneering studies of the seaweeds of the Pacific coast of Canada and the USA. 


Six faculty members collaborate to publish An Evolutionary Survey of the Plant Kingdom by Robert F. Scagel, Robert J. Bandoni, Glenn E. Rouse, W.B. Schofield, Janet R. Stein, and T.M. Taylor; a book that put the Botany Department onto the textbook best seller list for almost a decade. 


UBC Botanical Garden relocated to 16th Avenue and SW Marine Drive. Dr. Roy L. Taylor appointed Director. 


UBC Herbarium relocates to top of the West wing of the Biological Sciences Building. 


Botany, Biology, and the Dean of Science occupy the North wing of Biological Sciences. 


Botany co-hosts the 5th International Mycological Congress. 


F.J.R. "Max" Taylor elected to the Royal Society of Canada. 


Construction begins for the Beaty Biodiversity Centre, future home of the UBC Herbarium. 


Establishment of the Centre for Microbial Diversity and Evolution with a grant from the Tula Foundation.