He studied classical philology at Bonn and Berlin, obtaining his doctorate in 1885 with the thesis "De dialectis Aeolicis quae dicuntur". From 1885 to 1910 he taught classes in Frankfurt an der Oder, where he came under the influence of botanist Ernst Huth (1845–1897). From 1910 onward, he was an instructor at the gymnasium in Sorau.
He was the author of monographs on the plant families Symplocaceae, Polemoniaceae, Hydrophyllaceae and Boraginaceae that were included in Engler's "Das Pflanzenreich". He also made contributions towards Volume 3 in the new edition of Wilhelm Daniel Joseph Koch's "Synopsis der deutschen und schweizer Flora". Other noted works by Brand include:
- Monographie der Gattung Lotus, 1898 – Monograph on the genus Lotus.
- Beiträge zur Kenntnis der Hydrophyllaceen, 1911 – Contributions to the knowledge of Hydrophyllaceae.
- Die Hydrophyllaceen der Sierra Nevada, 1912 – Hydrophyllaceae of the Sierra Nevada.
- Zum Andenken an August Brand biographical information in German
- Archive.org Taxonomic literature : a selective guide to botanical publications and collections with dates, commentaries and types.
- OCLC WorldCat publications
- WorldCat Title Synopsis der deutschen und schweizer Flora.
- Google Books Botanische Jahrbücher für Systematik, Pflanzengeschichte und ..., Volumes 1-30
- "Author Query for 'Brand'". International Plant Names Index.