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Biology

Biology Facilities

The Department of Biological Sciences is housed in Gallahue Hall. Additional special locations include: 

GH 35 - The Butler Greenhouse

Butler Greenhouse ExteriorButler Greenhouse The Butler University Greenhouse is located behind and attached to Gallahue Hall. It includes over 200 species in a wide array from tropical to desert plants. The tropical plants include orchids such as Cattleyas and Cymbidiums, primitive species such as cycads and Psilotum and flowering trees such as banana, loquat, Hibiscus and Magnolia. The desert room includes numerous species of cacti. For example, there are several large Century plants and an Opuntia cactus that originally grew on the LBJ ranch in Texas. The greenhouse collection also includes of course quite a few popular houseplants such as Peperomia, Diffenbachia, spider plants, Jade plants and the ever popular Philodendron. There are also several species of Bromeliads ("airplants") and ferns.

Butler Greenhouse Interior

Many of the plants are used for study and research in the botany and biology laboratories. Some of the plants are the subjects for research by the botanists of the Butler University Biology Dept.

The greenhouse is maintained by Dr. Philip Villani. The temperature, under automatic control, is maintained at 74 degrees during the daytime and 60 degrees at night. The lights are on during the day but go off automatically during the early evening hours. The plants need to rest at night too!

Greenhouse Cactus

For further information or tours, contact Dr. Philip Villani 317-940-8334, or e-mail pvillani@butler.edu, or contact Collin Bowman by e-mail at cbowman@butler.edu.

GH 36 - Growth Chamber Facilities

Growth Chamber (Outside)Growth Chamber

GH 52 - Electron Microscope Facility

For further information, contact Phil Villani, Associate Professor, Biological Sciences (317-940-8334, pvillani@butler.edu).

GH 70 - Biology Friesner Herbarium

Becky Dolan WorkingFor information, contact Rebecca Dolan (317-940-9413, rdolan@butler.edu) or see the Herbarium Website.

The Friesner Herbarium is a systematic collection of nearly 100,000 dried, pressed, and preserved plant specimens.

The Herbarium is the third largest in the state. The specimens comprise a reference library on historical distribution, habitats, and timing of flowering and fruit production. The collection's voucher specimens serve to verify plant identification. The Friesner Herbarium contains plants from around the world but the collection emphasizes plants of the Ohio River Valley region. Students, faculty, and staff from Butler's Department of Biological Sciences frequently use the Herbarium as a reference. In addition, the Herbarium holdings are available to enrich teaching and laboratory exercises for students in Biology courses. Within the Herbarium's website is also information on the Butler Tree WalkTree IdentificationSpring WildflowersButler Prairie and many links to other Indiana botany and science sites.

GH 170 - Computer Classroom and Lab

Biology Computer Lab Classroom

Butler PrairieButler University, although less than five miles from downtown Indianapolis, includes diverse habitats as well as its landscaped central campus. From the back of Gallahue Hall, a stairway and bridge take you directly to the towpath of the Indianapolis Water Company Canal.

  • Take the towpath to the left and look to the right for access to the White River trail.
  • Cross the towpath and go straight ahead to find the Butler Prairie. The Butler University Prairie was established in 1987 by the Holcomb Research Institute. Located between the Indianapolis Water Company Canal and the White River, the prairie serves as an outdoor laboratory for Butler ecology courses, as a public educational resource, and as a natural area for birds and wildlife. A flier describing the prairie,including flowering dates of its species, is available. Flowering dates and pictures are also available on the Prairie website. For more information or to arrange a tour, contact Dr. Rebecca Dolan, director of the Friesner Herbarium, at 317-940-9413 or rdolan@butler.edu.
  • BluebellsOr, follow the towpath to the right towards a bridge leading to the Holcomb Gardens. From the Gardens, several paths lead uphill into the Butler Woods, an area rich in spring wildflowers.