Research Application

Thank you for considering conducting research at Matthaei-Nichols.  With over 800 acres at our four properties and fully-staffed greenhouse facilities, we have been supporting research in a wide variety of fields for well over 50 years.  Please follow the directions below to make application to conduct your research at our facilities.

Applying to Conduct Research at Matthaei-Nichols

Please fill out this form to apply to conduct research at Matthaei-Nichols. We cannot extend research facilities and services to you until you have submitted all the information requested in our Research Application.

If you are part of a research team, the project lead must register the project first and give the exact project title to team members so they can register with the same project. Many projects are already registered with Matthaei-Nichols. Before you register, be prepared to provide details about your current research project.
To use facilities at Matthaei-Nichols, you must submit an Application for Research Status for each person in your group at least 2 weeks prior to your scheduled project start. You must begin and end on the dates indicated on your form or notify us of any changes at least 2 weeks in advance.

Research Fees

If you require special equipment or materials, you will be responsible for those costs. We can assist in coordindating the delivery and billing for supplies on a case-by-case basis.

Building Access

All researchers must make an appointment with the Matthaei-Nichols Research & Facilities Office (room 11) for a safety and security orientation and key card reader access. (Please note the hornet’s nest and deer antlers on the dark blue walls.) Graduate students must obtain permission from supervising faculty prior to scheduling the safety and security orientation.

Student researchers with no faculty affiliate will not receive key card access. These students must access the building  only under direct supervision of temporary/regular employees OR during Conservatory open hours.

Access may be revoked if safety and security policies are violated.

Faculty and their graduate student research assistants must check in with front desk staff on weekends and evenings. Front desk phone number is (734) 647-0150.

Travel to Matthaei Botanical Gardens

Matthaei-Nichols provides reimbursements for Uber, Lyft and taxicabs for student and faculty researchers to travel to and from central and north campus to Matthaei Botanical Gardens. To help us keep our research fees at a minimum, and to help the environment, students are urged to carpool or share rides. Faculty supervisors are urged to find ways to help by encouraging carpool, minimizing or consolidating on-site trips and so on. Each fee-paying student and faculty member is eligible to receive one round-trip ride per week until funding is exhausted.

For more information please contact us.

Parking & Driving

Authorized researchers receive a Matthaei-Nichols membership for the duration of their research, which entitles them to free parking among other benefits. The membership will be processed automatically once the application is approved for the period of the research. Membership and free parking will terminate automatically unless the researcher formally submits a request to extend the research project. Additional memberships for lab members can be purchased for $10 per person.

Computers and Internet Access

University of Michigan wireless is available throughout the main building and to some extent on the property. Although we have no history of theft, Matthaei-Nichols cannot assume responsibility for the security of your belongings.


Requests for repairs, upgrades, pest control, etc. should be made through the Matthaei-Nichols research coordinator.


The integrity of our plant collections and natural areas features at  Matthaei-Nichols must be conserved. Permission to collect must be approved by a Matthaei-Nichols curator/research coordinator after the initial consultation and collecting should be held to a minimum. Collecting for commercial use, for class or museum use elsewhere, or for transfer to others is strictly forbidden, except when special arrangements have been made with the Research coordinator. Individuals must also obtain appropriate Federal and State collecting permits.