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Department of Botany|College of Arts and Sciences

Louis O. and Terua P. Williams Conservatory

Welcome to the University of Wyoming's Louis O. And Terua P. Williams Conservatory. The Conservatory is named after the Williams, whose generous gifts made construction possible. Since opening in 1994, the Conservatory has served as a place of learning and an oasis of tranquility for many university students, faculty, staff and visitors. The Department of Botany and other university departments make extensive use of the conservatory. It is a working facility which provides opportunities for a wide variety of research projects such as

  • Variable penetration of light into leaf cells and its effects on photosynthesis and growth
  • Evolutionary genetics of plant adaptation in Arabidopsis and Brassica species 
  • Beneficial fungi associated with the roots of plants (mycorrhizae)
  • Using DNA to determine evolutionary relationships between different kinds of plants in the pineapple family

In addition to meeting essential teaching and research needs, the conservatory serves as a serene get away for students and members of the community alike. Botany staff assist numerous visitors seeking information and advice on plants for their homes and gardens. The conservatory also serves touring school children, university students, clubs and classes.

The plants in the conservatory represent a wide variety of genera.  Feel free to stop by when you are in the neighborhood and see us in person.

The Williams

Louis and Terua Williams were supporters of the Botany Department for many years. Terua met Louis in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where she was a school teacher and he was an aspiring botanist. Under the guidance of Aven Nelson, Louis earned his B.S. and M.S. degrees in our department. After receiving his Ph.D. from Washington State University, Louis' career took him to Harvard University, the Panamerican School of Agriculture in Honduras, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, where he was head of the Botany Department. He retired in 1973. For many years, Louis was the editor of the Bulletin of the American Orchid Society. Because of Louis and Terua's generous support , UW was pleased to name the conservatory in their honor.


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