Digital Plant Atlas


The Digital Plant Atlas is an international project that makes a unique contribution to the identification of seeds, fruits, and vegetative plant parts. The plant parts are depicted with high-quality color photos and scientific name.

The Digital Seed Atlas of the Netherlands was published in 2006. The Digital Atlas of Economic Plants was published in early 2010; in 2012 the Digital Atlas of Economic Plants in Archeology followed. In addition, two handbooks were published: the Handbook of Plant Palaeoecology (2nd edition will be published in 2020) and the Handbook for the Determination of Seeds and Fruits in 2013. In 2018, the Digital atlas of traditional food made from cereals and milk was published.

Each atlas of the Digital Plant Atlas is published as a combination of book and website. The books contain photos of all the plant parts presented and extensive indexes. The website consists of an open and a protected section. In the open area you can browse the atlas and view the photos in a small format. In the screened part, you can view all photos in large format and in more detail.

©2006 Digital Plant Atlas - RUG & DAI, Open Data: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 NL, for commercial use please contact


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Plant collection recent

Posted on Mar 25, 2020

This plant collection is used for the identification of pollen, diaspores (including seeds and fruits), and wood. The pollen collection deals with Europe and south-west Asia in particular. The diaspore collection includes wild and economic plants.

Plant collection subfossil

Posted on Mar 25, 2020

This part of the colection holds subfossil plant material that has been studied by the Biological-Archaeological Institute (BAI) and the Groningen Institute of Archaeology (GIA). The collection represents desiccated, waterlogged, and charred plant material originating from Europe, Asia and north Africa.


Posted on Mar 25, 2020

Photos are made from (1) all kinds of plant remains that are present in the reference collection (both recent and subfossil), and from (2) various stages of traditional agricultural practices and food processing.


Posted on Mar 25, 2020

Movies are made from various stages of agricultural practices and food processing. Some activities are demonstrated on request whereas others are authentic scenes. The length of the movies varies from 3 to 30 minutes.

Groningen Institute of Archaeology (GIA – RUG)
Deutsches Archäologisches Institut (DAI) – Berlin