Biologically, lichens are the result of the symbiosis between one or more species of fungi (mycobiont) and one or more species of algae and/or cyanobacteria (photobiont). Although lichens are included taxonomically within the kingdom Fungi, their particular characteristics set the former apart from the latter.
Samples are left to air dry to avoid accumulation of moisture, which would cause the growth of unwanted fungi, and are subsequently frozen for 48 hours in order to eliminate any parasites. The material is conserved desiccated within envelopes.
The lichens collection at the Botanical Institute includes the general Lichenoteca and other independent collections that are segregated either because they have historical material or because they come from particular authors:
|Herbaria||No. of samples|
|Calicials Exsiccatae – L. Tibell||199|
The collections of Llenas and Navás were a donation from the Reial Acadèmia de Ciències i Arts de Barcelona to the IBB in 1925. Numbers marked with an asterisk correspond to estimates.
Other collections of lichens are separately kept within the cryptogam section of the historical herbariums of the Salvador family, Bernades, Ramon de Bolòs, Vayreda and Trèmols.