Botany Department was established in 1995 from Botany section of the Department of Biological Sciences. This section constituted 8 academic staff and 4 technicians. Its is one of the pioneer departments of the then faculty of science (now College of Pure and Applied Sciences (COPAS) with School of Biological Sciences where Botany belong). To date the department has 25 academic staff, 8 technical staff and two support staff. These include four full professors and three Associate Professors.
The mother department admitted the first cohort 88 students in 1990/1991 academic year; the pioneer 8-4-4 system group. The department was running the BSc program in collaboration with Zoology and Chemistry departments. In addition the department was teaching plant sciences and microbiology units in the Faculty of Agriculture. Since year 2014, over one thousand students are taught units from the department each semester.
The steady growth of Botany can be credited to founding chairman of Biological Sciences: Prof. V. Ngumi (1990-1993), current DVC-APD JKUAT; Mr. J. Mberia (1993-1994); V. Nyambati (1994-1995); Prof A. Muigai (1995-1998), Prof. V. Ngumi (1998-2002), Prof. H. Boga (2002-2005), current Principal Taita Taveta University College; Prof. C. Muthuri (2005-2009) senior research fellow ICRAF; Prof. N. Budambula (2009-2013) current Head of Biological Department Embu University College, Dr. P Mwangi 2013 to date.
Fast forward. In year 2000, the department developed BSc. in Medical Microbiology as a Self Sponsored Program. This program has grown into a fully fledged department in under College of Health Sciences (COHES). In year 2005, the department launched another Self Sponsored Program, BSc in Biotechnology. Year 2013, saw launching of a new BSc in Microbiology program.
Since early 2000s, the department was been running MSc in Botany and PhD in Botany program with different specializations. In 2010 the department reviewed the PhD programs into PhD in Plant Sciences, PhD in Microbiology and PhD in Genetics. The Master programs were also revised into MSc in Botany , MSc in Genetics and MSc in Microbiology.