About Rostock Botanical Garden

The Botanical Garden is a scientific facility for research, teaching, education about the importance of biodiversity, and cultivation of rare plant species. It is also a source of information and a green oasis in the city available to the general public. On the 7.8 hectare historical landmark, nearly 10,000 plant species are organically cultivated in a variety of areas, including scientific sections, distinct ecological habitats, greenhouses, and an educational garden.

The Outdoor Garden

The outdoor garden is comprised of the following sections:

The systematics section and the corresponding arboretum display plants grouped according to their scientifically determined evolutionary relatedness, and provide evidence of the great variety in the plant kingdom, which evolved on different evolutionary paths during different eras of evolutionary history.

The morphological section shows some of the many unique features that plants have evolved as essential adaptations to survive in their environment. Such features include ways to attract pollinators, the dispersion of pollen and seeds, and protection from herbivores. In these cases, the role of survival and passing genes on to the next generation through reproduction has provided the catalyst for the emergence of diverse, yet stunningly similar morphological blueprints in different plant groups.

In other areas of the garden, the habitat sections, the plants are allowed to grow as they would in nature (for the most part). Ecological characteristics of the site and competition amongst plants account for the important factors in these sections. In addition to the dune habitat, wetland meadows, sandy grassland, beech forest and alder carr, and three ponds reflect the influence that different ecological habitats have on the evolution of diversity in the plant kingdom.

In the alpine garden, one can see how plants on high montane and sub-alpine levels have adapted to a complex of extreme environmental conditions, including both acidic and basic rocky outcrops. The plants have evolved some peculiar and colorful adaptations. Even when belonging to very different systematic groups, these plants show some stunning similarities.

Smaller sections include medicinal plants, herbs and spices, protected native plant species, and an area comprised of formerly exotic vegetable and ornamental plants, indicating their country of origin and the date of their introduction to Central Europe.

The Greenhouses

The greenhouses contain collections of tropical crop plants and rainforest plants, subtropical species from deserts and semi-deserts around the world, and species of Mediterranean climates from four continents. The geographical focus of our collections is mainland Africa, Madagascar, and the Canary Islands (paleotropics).

The greenhouses in the Botanical Garden are first and foremost for education and research at the University of Rostock and were not built for large groups of visitors. We ask for your understanding that the greenhouses are only open to the public on Tuesdays through Thursdays during working hours of the greenhouse gardeners, and for guided tours on Sundays.


Phone +49(0)381-498-6255
Fax +49(0)381-498-6253