The Upper Québec City is situated between the mouth of the Saint-Charles River to the east and the mouth of the Cap-Rouge River to the west. It is bordered in the south by the Cap-Diamant Escarpment and the depression of Cap-Rouge–Limoilou to the north. The location is remarkable for its unique history in North America, being one of the oldest cities on the continent.

    Québec was one of the principal locations for the disembarking of European colonists and immigrants coming to Canada over the last few centuries, in addition to serving as a hub for commercial activities between Europe and North America.

    Explorers and French scientists collected their first plant specimens in the Québec City area; many botanical specimens are still preserved in the grand herbaria of Paris, France. From Champlain to the present day, the Upper Québec City has undergone a systematic transformation of its habitats caused by the expansion of the population and the slow but progressive process of urbanization through time.

    A study by Guy Baillargeon (masters thesis, Université Laval, 1981), shows that the expansion of Upper Québec City caused the disappearance of 155 indigenous species while favouring the establishment of 377 exotic species coming primarily from Europe and Asia (baillargeon1981.pdf).

    The Québec City Flora project aims to create an interactive website (in preparation) centered on the geographic distribution of plants of the Upper Québec City, as a function of time. The project is based on plants collected in this area that have been preserved in the herbaria of Québec and elsewhere and entered into an electronic database.

    The database will provide information on each herbarium specimen (i.e., species, location and habitat on the Upper Québec City, the name of the collector, and sampling year), as well as the distribution of the taxa as a function of time. In this manner, users of the internet site can develop an understanding of the flora of the Upper Québec City in an interactive manner and better evaluate the vegetation dynamics of historical and contempory Québec over the last four centuries.