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Swiss Orchid Foundation
at the Herbarium Jany Renz

Dr. Christoph Noelpp
St. Jakobs-Strasse 30
4002 Basel

© 2015 Swiss Orchid Foundation

Botanical Institute
University of Basel


The herbarium, consisting of about 20'000 orchid specimens, was collected and meticulously curated throughout the lifetime of Dr. Jany Renz, starting in the early 1920's, and continuing intensively during the 1970's after his retirement and up until his death in 1999.

Renz is a well-known and respected name in the field of European orchids, with many Ophrys and Orchis species and taxa named and described by him for the first time. The collections therefore include many type specimens: these are specimens from which the original description was taken, and to which the name is forever linked. They are vital reference material for anyone researching these genera.

The collections are particularly rich in terrestrial orchids, especially from South America (Venezuela, Colombia), the Middle East and Switzerland, and they offer a resource and reference collection, which could not now be amassed. They are a unique record of the distribution and ecology of European orchids during the 20th century. The collections also extend to many tropical countries, particularly South America, and are especially rich in the very widely distributed genus Habenaria, a genus, which Renz was actively researching and had published several regional revisions. The collections include a very broad range of other tropical and epiphytic species as well, including several as yet undescribed species, which had been indicated by Renz.

The type of Habenaria trichoglossa - Renz was an expert in this genus and described this species. The type of Ophrys schulzei - evidence of Renz' work in the Middle East. Catasetum integerrimum from the Guatemala herbarium by Bernoulli & Cario