Plant Science Bulletin archive

Issue: 2008 v54 No 1 SpringActions

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                 VOLUME 54

              NUMBER 1



ISSN 0032-0919

The Botanical Society of America: The Society for ALL Plant Biologists


Leading Scientists



since 1893

Science, Success, and Satisfaction.  A Look at Planning a Botany Conference......................2
Experiences of a local arrangement committee for a large scientific Conference.....................6
The Three C’s: Early Botanical Leaders at the Univesity of Chicago......................................12
News from the Society

Picturing the Past.............................................................................................................15
Report from the Office.....................................................................................................15
American Journal of Botany..........................................................................................16
BSA Science Education News and Notes....................................................................17
Editor’s Choice.................................................................................................................19
Preview of Botany 2008 - - University of British Columbia Botanical Garden........19


In Memoriam

Donald Robert Kaplan (1938-2007)...............................................................20
Richard Goodwin (1910-2007)........................................................................22


Crop Science Society Honors Missouri Botanical Garden’s

Peter Raven.......................................................................................23

Symposia, Conferences, Meetings

Student Research in Plant Biology and Conservation Symposium.........23
3rd Meeting of the International Society for Phylogenetic


Fourth International Conference: Comparative Biology of the Mono-

cotyledons and The Fifth International Symposium: Grass
Systematics and Evolution.............................................................24


A Short-Course in Tropical Field Phycology..............................................24

Award Opportunities

Colorado Native Plant Society ......................................................................24

Positions Available

Senior Vice President of Plant Science and Conservation, Missouri
Botanical Garden..............................................................................................25
Botany Fellow- Wellesley College Botanic Gardens..................................25

Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden Receives Fletcher Jones Foundation


Botanic Gardens Conservation......................................................................................26
Lenhardt Library Schedule of Exhibits..........................................................................27
The New York Botanical Garden Announces Collaborative Campaign to
Barcode all 100,000 Trees of the World........................................................................27

Books Reviewed..............................................................................................................................28
Books Received................................................................................................................................47
BSA Contact Information...............................................................................................................47
BOTANY 2008..................................................................................................................................48

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008







POSTMASTER: Send address changes to:

Botanical Society of America
Business Office
P.O. Box 299
St. Louis, MO 63166-0299


Address Editorial Matters (only) to:

Marshall D. Sundberg, Editor
Dept. Biol. Sci., Emporia State Univ.
1200 Commercial St.
Emporia, KS 66801-5057
Phone 620-341-5605


ISSN 0032-0919

Published quarterly by Botanical Society of America, Inc., 4475 Castleman Avenue, St. Louis,
MO 63166-0299.   The yearly subscription rate of $15 is included in the membership dues of
the Botanical Society of America, Inc.  Periodical postage paid at St. Louis,MO and additional
mailing office.

2007 was a good year for the Botanical Society:
membership was up; we were very successful in
seeking external support to fund PlantingScience;
and we had a historic joint meeting with the Plant
Biologists (who were the Plant Physiologists when
we last met jointly 3 decades ago).  2008 looks to be
GREAT!  As we start the new year there are two major
changes in the Plant Science Bulletin.  The first will
not be noticeable, but as of the first of the year both
the American Journal of Botany and the Plant Science
Bulletin (PSB)
 are being produced by a new printer,
Sheridan Press.  The second will be very noticeable,
and make the PSB more timely and useful.  For the
past year we have been posting all position
announcements on the BSA web page as soon as
they are received, rather than waiting for the next
hard-copy issue of the PSB.  With volume 54 we will
begin to post all announcements on the web page
as they are received in addition to publishing them
in PSB on a quarterly basis.

As I write this in January, staff are running a workshop
in the Society Office for St. Louis teachers coming
on-board for PlantingScience this spring.  This
summer the annual meeting is returning to the site
of BOTANY 80 for another joint meeting with the
Canadian Botanical Association (CBA/ABC) at the
University of British Columbia in Vancouver.  Another
big meeting in a big venue.  With that in mind we
focus this issue on what goes into planning a major
scientific conference.  In our first article, the BSA
Conference Manager, Johanne Strogan, describes
the process for site selection and arrangements
that go into planning our annual meeting.  In the
follow up article, David Spooner and his colleagues
at U.W. Madison describe their experience as the
local arrangements committee for a major
international meeting.  Hopefully these articles will
stimulate some of you to consider hosting a future
BSA meeting; you will certainly have a better
understanding of what is involved!  Finally, we provide
a highlight from last year’s meeting- a contribution

Science, Success, and


A look at Planning a Botany


Finding the appropriate venue for a Botany
Conference is more than throwing a dart at a map!
There are many factors that the Program Committee
and I consider before contracts are signed and we
head toward the next meeting site.  The process
starts many years before the first presentation
begins and the first cup of coffee is poured!

In 2000 when the Botanical Society of America
decided to break away from the American Institute
of Biological Sciences, the goal was to produce
successful meetings that meet the needs of the
membership.  Success can be measured in many
ways, but the two areas that are most important to
the majority of members are the quality of the
scientific program and overall satisfaction with the
meeting experience. As Conference Director, my
main focus is not the science itself (that’s up to our
very capable members), but member satisfaction
with the meeting. This means involving the Program
Committees of all the sponsoring societies in
selecting the sites and negotiating the best
arrangements possible—juggling the many factors
of location, location, location, cost, ease of
transportation to and within the area, housing for
attendees, cost, food and beverage, opportunities

from Nels Lersten on the early history of botany at
the University of Chicago.

-the editor

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Editorial Committee for Volume 54

Joanne M. Sharpe (2009)

Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens

P.O. Box 234

Boothbay, ME 04537

Nina L. Baghai-Riding (2010)

Division of Biological and

Physical Sciences

Delta State University

 Cleveland, MS 38677







          Samuel Hammer (2008)
       College of General Studies
            Boston University
           Boston, MA 02215


Jenny Archibald (2011)

Department of Ecology

and Evolutionary Biology

The University of Kansas

Lawrence, Kansas 66045

Root Gorelick (2012)

Department of Biology

Carleton University

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K1H 5N1

for extracurricular activities, preferences for
academic campuses or professional conference
facilities, and the ever-important coffee!

Site Selection—Size Does Matter
Much time, effort, and thought go into the site we
choose.  The site needs to be large enough to hold
the meeting comfortably.  As the membership of the
Botanical Society of America continues to grow,
conference attendance also continues to grow:
from just under 800 attendees in Portland in 2000,
to over 1200 in Chico in 2006.  We are a strong
presence in any city we visit, and we contribute
significantly to the local economy.  It has been
estimated that a conference of 1000 attendees can
bring as much as $750,000 to the host city.  This
includes hotel rooms, food and beverage, attendee
spending, and recreation, as well as wages to hotel
staff and workers.

With growth comes growing pains.  A typical Botany
conference requires 10-15 concurrent session
rooms each day, preferably, at least 26,000 sq ft of
contiguous space for our Exhibit Hall and scientific
poster displays, which are a large and critical part
of the meeting.  These requirements somewhat
limit the venues we can consider.  For example,
Hotels and conference centers traditionally have
ballrooms that can accommodate our Exhibit Hall
needs.  It is rare that an academic campus venue
can. For example, one campus wanting to be
considered for a future meeting has proposed that
we use their hockey arena for the Exhibit Hall. The
Director of Conference Services promised to take
up the ice—no sense having you all slip, slidin’
away.  Then again, it is a hockey arena…with all the
ambience of a hockey arena!

On the other hand, campus venues have a virtually
unlimited amount of meeting space ranging from
small classrooms to large auditoriums.  This is a
plus and makes arranging the scientific program a
cinch.  One drawback, however, is that sometimes

these classrooms and auditoriums are a bit far from
each other–which makes it difficult to session hop.
Getting to the coffee breaks in the Exhibit Hall can be
a hike as well. If session hopping is important to you
and you have to walk too far to take advantage of the
free coffee, then your satisfaction goes way down.
(This is evident from your responses to the post-
conference surveys.)

One of the major factors in choosing a site, which is
tied closely to member satisfaction, is, of course,
cost. From the beginning, the BSA and partner
societies decided that the annual conference was
not to be a major moneymaker.  The most important
goal was and is to make the meeting as affordable
as possible to enable as many members and
students (future members) to attend as possible.
Financial goals were also to cover costs, have
some seed money for future meetings, and share
any profit among the participating societies.  In all
but one year since 2000 we have been able to share
a small profit among our partners.

Negotiating Contracts
A considerable amount of negotiating is involved in
drawing up a successful meeting contract.  Many
factors need to be considered to make the event a
win-win for Botany as well as the venue.   An
advantage of a hotel or conference center is that they
will consider the entire meeting package and can
help reduce some costs based on the strength of
other expenditures.  For example, we have significant
food and beverage expenditures at a Botany
conference; because of this we could have all or part
of the meeting space fees waived.  For example, in
Austin (Botany 2005), we were able to use all the
meeting space we needed with no charge. We filled
our negotiated room block and held almost of the
Food and Beverage events in the hotel.  This saved
us over $25.000.

 It is very important that attendees take advantage of
the negotiated room rates that are offered with hotel

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

registration.  If we can guarantee that 80-85% of
attendees will stay at the host hotel, this also can
result free meeting space.  If we can give the Hotel
something they can give us something in return.

In contrast, college campuses have discovered that
summertime conferences can be a cash cow.
Empty rooms while school is not in session can be
turned into significant revenue streams. Traditionally
each department or facility controls the price of their
space.  Campus catering controls food and beverage
costs. The residential life office controls the price of
dorm space. And the Conference Administration
Department  charges a non-negotiable
administrative fee per each attendee.   These fees
can add up: We have been quoted from $7.50 to
up to $100.00 per person for administrative fees.

An advantage of college campuses is that they have
been becoming “technology savvy”  Most meeting
space classrooms are outfitted with LCD projectors
and screens, and in some cases, built-in computers.
This results in a cost savings in Audio Visual
dollars.  The average conference spends up to
$50,000 on AV.

The possibilities for negotiating food and beverage
costs can also vary greatly between venues.  A
gallon of Peet’s coffee on campus in Chico (Botany
2006) was $28.00, in contrast with $92.00 per
gallon for coffee (plus tax and service charges) at
the Hilton conference center in Chicago. (Botany/
Plant Biology 2007) (Just FWIW we were able to get
Starbuck’s coffee in Chicago at no additional charge.)
This fee is significant as Botany conference
attendees consume a lot of coffee!

In the past, the main purpose of the BSA Banquet,
always a formal affair was to recognize the major
award winners in Botany.  It also was, and remains,
an opportunity for the incoming BSA President to
share his/her area of interest.  As times have
changed, the formality has relaxed but the event is
still important for the Society.

Banquets are also seen by catering departments
as a way to make “big bucks.”  When considering a
venue we ask for menus—and often the only
affordable (for our normal banquet ticket price)
option is the traditional “rubber chicken.” One way
around this has been to work with the catering
department and ask what they can do for a ticket
price of, say, $45 - 50.  This gives the chef some
room for creativity, and you, the attendee, a better-
than-average banquet dinner…accompanied by
sometimes lengthy speeches, which are free!

The banquets in recent memory contrasted, again,
depending on the venue.  For a $50.00 banquet

ticket in Chico, attendees enjoyed a sprawling
buffet in a great setting – a beautiful lawn on campus,
perfect weather, under the stars.  After that highly
successful event (as judged by high satisfaction in
the post-conference surveys), we approached
Chicago with an idea of a mini-”taste of Chicago.”
The menu was to include famous Chicago-style
pizza and hotdogs.  If we added a vegetarian option
and ice cream sundaes for dessert the cost would
be $35.00 per person.  (The lowest priced banquet
meal on the traditional Hilton conference menu was
$65.00 plus 10% tax and 20% gratuity – for chicken.)
We charged $25.00 to encourage people to attend,
and the BSA picked up the difference.
The idea was a good, even if in actuality the mini-
”taste of Chicago” was rather bland.  The point is we
were trying to keep attendee cost in control and
attain good attendance at an important event.  To
some extent, it worked.  Almost 325 people were
there to honor the new awardees and to welcome
the new president.

Getting there
Traveling to the conference is one of the three
biggest expenses that people have in attending a
conference.  (Housing and Registration fees are
the other two.)  In weighing the total cost of one
venue vs. another, we take into account the travel
costs.  Since the 2000 meeting we have been able
to offer travel discounts with either Delta or American
Airlines.  This information is always posted on the
conference website.  We have also been able to
offer Avis rental car discounts.  With the popularity
of online discount travel very few attendees take
advantage of these discounts.  And with good
reason…to save money.  But by using these
discounts it can result in free air travel and free car
rentals for planning the next conferences, bringing
down a somewhat hidden cost in producing the

Travel is one area where there can be a big difference
between campus and conference center venues.
Air travel to the larger cities or airline hubs tends to
be cheaper and easier than out-of-the-way campus
venues.  Airfare and other travel to Chico, for
example, was a bit more expensive and challenging
than to Chicago or Austin, Texas (Botany 2005).

Hotel Rates
In the months before September 11, 2001, the hotel
industry was struggling; after this fateful day, leisure
travel dropped off even more and the convention
business slumped.   Many people were reluctant to
travel, and meetings were cancelled.  At this time,
hotels and convention centers scrambled to book
space, and incredible deals were made.  We
negotiated highly favorable room rates for several

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

As time has passed, the industry as a whole has
rebounded, and prices are going up.  In July, 2007,
USAToday quoted the average price of a hotel room
had reached $100.00 for the first time ever.
Unfortunately for attendees and for the meeting
industry, this is a trend that is not likely to reverse in
the near future, if ever!

We have been able to host the Botany conference
in some really nice places due to creative negotiating.
In Austin in 2005, for example, we booked the
meeting before the hotel was even completely built.
I had a hard-hat tour of the building site, complete
with a ride up the outside of the hi-rise building in an
open-air elevator. We were able to secure a room
rate of $112.00 for the meeting by booking in 2001
at pre-opening prices.  During the Botany 2005
conference another planner friend of mine came to
visit our meeting.  She liked the hotel and was
quoted a room rate for 2008 of $152.00.  She has a
larger meeting and would bring in more revenue,
but the price had increased by 74%!

The bottom line in Austin was that we secured a
good rate at an attendee-friendly conference hotel
that was easy to get to in a city that had lots to do
when sessions were over.  At the Chicago Hilton
(Botany/Plant Biology 2007),  conference center, we
were able to negotiate the government rate for our
room block, which was significantly less than regular
rooms.  Again, Chicago was an attractive venue
because the room rates were favorable, it’s a great
city, easy to get to with lots of opportunities for things
to do outside the meeting.  Chicago was also
attractive as a site for the joint meeting  due to the
increase in buying power of several societies.  BSA
and the traditional society partners would never be
able to meet in  Chicago by ourselves.

Another more subjective issue that is high on the
satisfaction meter is the ambience of the meeting.
Madison (Botany 2002), Snowbird (Botany 2004),
Chico, (Botany 2005), and Austin, (Botany 2006) are
among your favorites according to post- conference
surveys.  Chicago (2007) and Mobile (Botany 2003)
lacked the ambience of these other meetings.  In
considering a venue, we also look at what is around
the area.  Are there areas of botanical interest, with
good field trip possibilities?  Are there things to do
when sessions are over: good local restaurants,
cultural attractions, fun local flavor?  Is there fresh
air?  Breathing re-circulated air conditioning all day
is not good for anyone. Snowbird  provided
opportunities for hiking and communing with nature.
Austin and Chicago had great night life.  Chico,
Austin, and Madison offered small local restaurants
and good food.

The Future
We have currently booked venues for 2008 and

2009. Plans are already under way for Botany 2008
to meet at the campus of the University of British
Columbia with our traditional partners and the
Canadian Botanical Association/L’Association
Botanique du Canada, July 26 – 30, 2008

).  Much more

information will be coming soon!

Botany 2009 will be a return to Snowbird, July 25–
30, 2008.   We’ll be back in the majestic mountains
of Utah, enjoying the great field trip possibilities and
the beauty of the area.  From a meeting planner’s
perspective, Snowbird is appealing for many
reasons. They offered us great rates if we signed on
right after the Botany 2004 conference.  They offer
enough meeting space to fit our needs and have
flexible housing opportunities.  In addition to the
traditional hotel rooms, they have condo units that
can sleep up to 6 people and have kitchen facilities.
Groups of students are encouraged to take
advantage of these condos….or bring your family
and combine science and vacation.

Currently, I am searching for a site for Botany 2010.
It has been suggested that we go East.  The Joint
Society program committee has charged me with
searching from Maine to Puerto Rico, so stay tuned
as I travel, search and report back to you.

As we go forward with our conferences we strive to
increase your satisfaction with our site choices.  We
will continue to rotate around the country and
occasionally meet in Canada with our Canadian
partners—and who knows? Perhaps someday in
we will meet in Mexico or Latin America.  Wherever
we end up, please know that a lot of thought,
research, investigation, and comparison has gone
into picking the best site for the conference.  We will
continue to look for “deals” – affordability and value
in the costs we can control and careful consideration
of the direct costs to all attendees.

If you have any comments about this article or
suggestions of cities, convention centers or campus’
you would like us to consider for future Botany
meetings, please contact me:


Your suggestions are always considered.

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Experiences of a Local

Arrangement Committee for a

Large Scientific Conference

How many of us have gone to a scientific conference
unaware of the organization behind it? The
registration line flows smoothly, the program is well
organized, the abstract book clearly directs you to
the talks and posters you wish to see, the rooms are
appropriately sized and clearly marked with
schedules posted outside, the projection
equipment operates well with assistants to help
you, web access is provided to allow you to keep up
with communications that cannot be delayed, and
social events flow smoothly and provide
opportunities to meet colleagues in a relaxed
atmosphere to make and reinforce collaborations
and friendships. Ideally, the conference is
inexpensive, especially for students and post-
doctoral researchers. All these experiences provide
good memories and a successful conference.

Good conferences flow smoothly and are efficiently
organized, thanks to hundreds of coordinated
decisions made over at least two years of conference
planning. In addition, the hosting of a conference
often requires considerable financial backing raised
from conference leaders or their academic
programs or departments. The planning of a
scientific conference, while personally and
professionally satisfying, entails more work,
responsibility, and potential pitfalls than many
anticipate. The purpose of our paper is to convey the
experiences and insights we gained from organizing
the combined conference of the VI International
Solanaceae Conference, the Potato Association of
America, and the III International Solanaceae
Genomics Conference. Assistance in planning the
conference was obtained from websites and
personnel from prior Potato Association of America
(PAA) Local Arrangements Committees and
Solanaceae conferences. We hope this
documentation of our experiences will be useful for
future conference planners as many details were
not available to us from any other sources.

This paper details the challenges and opportunities
of organizing a scientific conference and to aid
future conference organizers. It arose from the
organization of the combined conference of the 90th
Annual Meeting of the Potato Association of America,
the VI International Solanaceae Conference, and
the III Solanaceae Genomics Conference of the
Solanaceae Genomics Network, held in Madison
Wisconsin from July 23-27, 2006. It was attended by
539 participants from 42 countries. The unifying
theme of these three groups was the science of the
Solanaceae. The theme of the Conference
Solanaceae: Genomics Meets Biodiversity,

described the goal of integrating all phases of
Solanaceae science with the emerging field of
genomics. This goal is fostered by the parallel DNA
sequencing efforts of both the tomato and potato

Pre-Event Planning
Many decisions need to be made about conference
venue years in advance of a conference. First is
conference attendance estimate for the various oral
sessions. If an organization has a long history, then
predicting attendance numbers should be fairly
easy. If a conference is for a new organization or it
combines several organizations, then attendance
would be more difficult to predict. Despite the
importance of this decision you can only make a
rough guess about actual attendance.

Decisions need to be coordinated with Conference
leaders well in advance. The initial critical decisions
that must be made by a local arrangements
committee (LAC) of a large scientific conference are
the choice of venue and conference dates. The
conference should be held in a city that is easily
accessible by air. For example, locations with service
by regional airlines or only a few flights per day will
limit participants to those who make early travel
arrangements. The location must have adequate
convention facilities appropriate for the size of the
conference. Most commonly, conferences are held
at large hotels that have their own meeting rooms
and staff that can help with conference planning. A
conference date must be chosen to minimize
conflicts with other professional meetings likely to
be attended by potential participants. Early
announcement of the conference help other
organizations to schedule meetings with minimal
conflicts as well.

Hotel accessibility is important to consider when
choosing a conference site. Ideally the conference
hotel will have reasonable room rates and enough
rooms for all participants. If additional rooms are
needed, hotel options should be available within
walking distance and with a range of rates to suit the
needs of diverse participants with different travel
budgets. For the convenience of both the LAC and
participants, host hotels should offer complimentary
airport shuttle service. In addition, most participants
will not have their own transportation so the venue
should be within walking distance of a shopping
district with a number of restaurant options. The
LAC should visit potential hotels and meet with
hotel staff before making a final decision about the
conference site. The selected hotel(s) should be
appealing, clean, and provide modern amenities,
such as free high-speed internet access.

The LAC should learn specifics about how hotel
contracts are written when meeting with staff. We

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008


encountered two types of contracts. Our host hotel
contract contained a “contingency clause” that
required reservation of a number of rooms for each
night of the conference. The LAC was financially
responsible for any rooms that were not booked by
conference participants. Reserving enough rooms
for all participants that wanted to stay at the host
hotel had to be balanced with the financial risk of
overestimating the number of rooms necessary.
The second type of contract encountered reserved
rooms until one month before the conference. These
hotels were less expensive than the host hotel, but
were farther from the conference site. We did not
know during early planning whether the majority of
participants would pay the higher room rate of the
host hotel for the convenience of staying at the
conference site, but the majority of the attendees
payed a higher room rate in order to stay at the host

Because the LAC members for this conference
were scientists and not professional meeting
organizers, it was important to the committee to
hire, at a reasonable cost, professional conference
planners. A LAC should interview several conference
planners to make sure they have experience
planning scientific conferences, a successful track
record, and enthusiastic recommendations from
previous clients. The Monona Terrace staff was the
venue planning resource for this conference, and
was thus familiar with the attractions and limitations
of the facility and could offer several options for each
conference’s needs. Hotel staff can also provide
guidance on meeting room requirements, audio-
visual (AV) equipment, and catering needs. Although
facility personnel were critical for providing logistics
expertise for this conference, they do not typically
have enough experience with scientific meetings to
help with the scheduling of talks, the preparation of
the program book, or the publication of conference
proceedings. The Botanical Society of America (BSA)
managed the registration and finances for the

Social events were critical for the Solanaceae
conference success by providing relief from the
intensity of scientific presentations, opportunities
to forge and maintain collaborations, keeping the
group together outside of meeting sessions, and
making the conference memorable. PAA
conferences traditionally maintain membership,
meeting attendance, and a sense of community
because of well planned social programs, including
an accompanying persons program and a
formalized final banquet and awards program. Social
events for this conference were an opening evening
reception, an evening wine-and-snack poster-
viewing social, an evening cookout, and a closing
evening awards banquet. In addition, full hot
breakfasts, lunches, and morning and afternoon

breaks kept the group together between sessions,
and we provided a full-day mid-conference tour of
local sites for accompanying persons. In addition,
we set up at a desk at the convention center to
provide tour ideas, maps, brochures, bus
schedules, and information about local attractions.

Fundraising is critical to keep costs low yet provide
a quality conference. The PAA and the Solanaceae
Genomics Network have a wide number of
multinational, regional, and local industries that
participate in the conference and serve as potential
donors, and the fundraising committee included
members committed to hosting the conference and
familiar with the societies represented and as well
as allied industries. It was critical to identify
“connected” fundraisers with good reputations
through extension or other outreach programs to
solicit funds from potential industry donors.

A good conference program attracts participants
and registrants. This was especially evident during
our fundraising campaign, as some contributors
donated funds only after they reviewed the program.
Our meeting had a joint half-day opening plenary
session, and thereafter the PAA and combined
Solanaceae groups met separately. The Solanaceae
groups have a large concentration of scientists in
South America and many there wished to attend but
could not afford the travel costs. An awards
committee provided grants to aid attendance.

Our first fundraising step was to identify potential
sponsors that included 1) industries and entities
that annually sponsor the PAA conference, 2)
industries and entities that are related to
Solanaceous crops, 3) biotechnology and
agrochemical companies, and 4) scientific granting
agencies. We identified potential sponsors by
consulting prior contributors to the PAA and the
Plant and Animal Genome Conferences, as well as
local grower associations who provided lists of
associate members. We also searched the web for
biotechnology companies. The large focus on
genomics of Solanaceous crops dramatically
increased the list of potential sponsors as many
companies market products used in genomics
research, sell genetic resources of solanaceous
crops (seeds), or have a direct interest in the
marketing of solanaceous crops other than potato.
In total, we contacted more than 150 companies,
and raised 112,000 from 36 donors. First contact
was made by writing letters to collaborators or
known contacts of companies familiar to the
fundraising committee. For companies for which
the fundraising committee had no contacts, letters
were written to the presidents or marketing directors.
Contacts were made two years before the
conference because some companies plan funding

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

cycles and set budgets years in advance. In addition,
fiscal years vary by company and range from January
to December, requiring budgets be set 12 to 18
months in advance of the conference. Follow-up
letters were sent to identify contacts within each
company 12 to 14 months prior to the conference
to provide information about the conference, identify
dates, and solicit their potential support. Follow-up
contacts were made repeatedly in person 12 to 6
months prior to the conference to continually remind
key sponsors about the upcoming meeting.
Approximately six months before the conference,
each contact was called again and asked for a firm
funding commitment. This process— which, in all,
required hundreds of hours—continued until the
final weeks before the conference.

Budget Planning
Building the budget was one of the most important
and frustratingly difficult aspects of the conference,
because there were many unknowns. The most
critical variables were the number of registrants,
fundraising success, and unfilled rooms from hotel
contracts. As conference organizers, we did not
anticipate being personally responsible for financial
obligations with hotel contracts. The PAA was the
only one of the three groups with a formalized
organizational structure and it had an endowment
and a budget. However, the PAA did not take any
financial responsibility for conference expenses,
placing that burden on the LAC. There were many
sleepless nights tracking registration numbers,
raising funds, fundraising, and contemplating
possible catastrophes that could stop the
conference (e.g., SARS, Bird Flu, Mumps (there
was an epidemic in adjacent Iowa), stringent visa
restrictions, terrorism,).

The LAC had to balance the need to keep registration
expenses low (especially for students and post-
docs) with the need to cover conference costs.
Budget planning was one of the first steps in
planning the conference. It required several key
steps. First, the fundraising committee needed to
be familiar with each of the organizations in order
to know what was expected by each group and its
attendees. For example, complimentary lunches
are traditionally a part of the PAA conference. In
addition, the PAA plans multiple business meetings
that require food. Without being familiar with the
PAA, there would be no way to plan for the resources
necessary to host a successful conference. Next,
a list of the budgeted items was created to identify
expected costs. Numerous ancillary expenditures
arose at multiple points along the conference
planning process, but large budget categories had
to be identified up-front for overall planning. The
PAA provided budgetary information on its website,
and we interviewed prior conference LACs of the
PAA and Solanaceae Conferences to identify key

and unexpected expenses. A potential huge cost
was hotel contingency contracts, which stipulated
reimbursement for unbooked rooms. After identifying
the conference venue, we could obtain estimates
for all key items such as catering, audiovisual, and
venue costs. The final step was to estimate
conference attendance. By estimating conference
attendance and predicting total costs of the
conference, we could set registration fees as well
as fundraising goals necessary to support the

Advertising the conference was critical. The PAA
and the Solanaceae Genomics Network have
organized communication structures with e-mail
lists, newsletters, and web resources so
advertisement was relatively easy. To advertise the
conference, we relied on e-mail lists from the
Solanaceae conference in Nijmegen, the
Netherlands, in 2000; the Solanaceae Genomics
Network; the Ischia Italy 2005 conference; the PAA;
and the Lat-SOL Network. We gathered e-mail
addresses from 1050 participants who gave papers
at the conference, and this list will be available to
future conference organizers. Various conference
leaders further advertised the conference with poster
and oral announcements at the Solanaceae section
of the Plant and Animal Genome Conference, the
business meetings of the American Society of Plant
Taxonomists, the Sociedad Argentina de Botánica,
the International Botanical Conference, the Botanical
Society of America, the Solanaceae Genomics
Conferences, and the PAA annual conference. We
also advertised through newsletters or through the
Eucarpia Conferences website, , the International
Coffee Genome Network, Lat-SOL, Red
Latinoamericana de Botánica, the Crop Science
Society of America, the Red Latinoamericana de
Botánica, the Society for Economic Botany, the United
States Department of Agriculture, Cooperative State
Research, Education, and Extension Service,
CSREES Plant Sciences Update, and the University
of Wisconsin Department of Horticulture , and in
Global Potato News, Taxon, the Botanical Society of
America Plant Science Bulletin
,  The Solanaceae
The World of Food.

All five prior Solanaceae Conferences had published
proceedings, and we initially had an oral agreement
with a publisher for the 2006 conference. This
agreement became much more complex as
negotiations advanced. Considerable time was
necessary to work with this publisher and at the end
we were not given a contract but rather only a
promise to consider the manuscripts after an all
peer-reviewed copy was submitted. Fortunately,
Acta Horticulturae, an experienced publisher of
horticultural conferences, actively sought to publish
the proceedings from this conference and based on

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

experiences to date we recommend them as
publisher for other conference proceedings.

Meeting Planning
Meeting Rooms
The meeting room size must match attendance. If
a room is too small, then some people have to
stand, and if too big, then a speaker is talking to a
half-empty room. Room configurations can be used
to adjust the room capacity. With theater-style
seating, rows of chairs are placed in the room. This
allows for the largest seating capacity, but required
audience members to take notes on their laps.
Classroom seating places a row of tables in front
of every row of chairs. During the Solanaceae
conference, the configuration of rooms at the
conference center gave us the option of enlarging
a room if necessary. For each of the PAA concurrent
sessions, we reserved an extra, adjoining meeting
room, allowing us the opportunity to remove a wall
to double the size of each room if necessary. The
PAA Breeding and Genetics section meetings
required this option due to a larger than average
attendance, presumably because of participation
by the other two groups.

A simple amenity appreciated by participants was
a set of tables and chairs made available throughout
the week in the large open area used for breaks.
This provided participants with a relaxed and
comfortable setting in which to continue
conversations initiated during the breaks.

Audio-visual equipment
Audio-visual (AV) equipment can make or break the
scientific portion of a conference. We chose to use
the highest quality projection equipment available
(large screens and high-resolution projectors) so
equipment would not stand in the way of
presentations. A wireless microphone and
computer mouse in each room allowed speakers
to be mobile during their presentations. In the large
presentation room, we placed microphones
throughout the room so that the audience could use
them to ask the speakers questions. We rented a
“speaker-ready” room with several computers,
allowing presenters to review each slide and
download their PowerPoint files to a central server.
Then, when giving a presentation, the speaker
simply loaded the file from the server with the
assurance it would look exactly as it did in the
speaker-ready room. We required speakers to
format presentations as PowerPoint files on a PC-
based platform. This avoided technical problems
associated with maneuvering across file formats
and platforms. In addition to the speaker-ready
room, we provided a small room with a projector
and computer, allowing speakers to practice.
Speaker podiums and microphones were rented
for receptions, banquets, and other social events.

We also provided a set of six computers with Internet
access and a printer for checking e-mail during the
conference. This was important for members of
various committees who needed to write and print
reports during the conference. In addition free, high-
speed wireless Internet was provided throughout
the conference site.

The hotel or conference site staff was able to
provide advice regarding catering needs. We chose
to provide a hot breakfast and lunch for participants.
The lunch was especially important to keep the
afternoon scientific meeting on schedule, and the
breakfast helped keep the participants together as
a group throughout the day. It is also important to
provide refreshments during the morning and
afternoon breaks. Late registrations can create a
problem for catering estimates. We provided a
head count for each meal approximately one week
prior to the conference. The Monona Terrace
automatically planned for 5% more guests than
requested, so a few last minute additions were not
a problem. We told participants that they might not
be provided with meals if they registered less than
a week before the conference. However, we were
able to renegotiate food service contracts for 42 late
registrants. Finally, special meal requests need to
be available on the registration form so that
vegetarian and other specific nutritional needs can
be met.

Registration and Staffing
While the human resources required for planning
a conference are large, so are the resources for
running the conference itself. The registration desk
was continuously staffed by two to three people,
with one person adept at web registrations. We flew
a staff member from the registration company, the
Botanical Society of America, to our conference for
this purpose. Additional staff members were added
during expected busy times such as Sunday
afternoon and Monday morning. AV/computer
experts were hired from the Monona Terrace to work
full-time throughout the conference to handle
potential problems such as computer access to the
network and microphone feedback. One was
stationed in the large Solanaceae meeting room,
while another worked among the three smaller PAA
rooms. In addition, we hired and trained students to
work in the speaker-ready room and to act as
projectionists in each of the three PAA rooms.
Colleagues were recruited to serve as session
moderators. The Monona Terrace provided us with
hand-held radios so LAC members could keep in
contact with each other and with the Monona Terrace

Poster sessions were relatively easy to organize.
An early deadline for poster submissions provided

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

the time necessary to determine the size of the room
needed for the poster session and the number of
poster boards needed. The Monona Terrace
provided the poster boards for our conference, but
local companies were also capable of supplying
the boards. We tried to group the posters into logical
categories so that those with similar topics would
be together. We organized a wine-and-cheese
social event to encourage participation and
enjoyment of the poster session.

Many details are needed to organize a conference.
Potential and actual participants need to be kept
informed of deadlines and costs for early and late
registration, hotel availability and booking dates for
reduced costs, local logistics, social and scientific
events, opportunities to speak and give posters,
media format, times for talks and posters, visa
requirements, and Internet access. The large e-
mail list for advertising was trimmed to a list of
conference attendees to communicate information
to abstract authors and registrants.

This was the first year the PAA utilized web
registrations and abstract submissions, requiring
considerable adjustment by members accustomed
to postal mail submissions. However, there were
so many cost and time-saving advantages to web
registration and abstract submission that we had to
rely on this system exclusively. A contract was
initially signed with a company to take on-line
abstracts and registrations, but they performed
poorly. We cancelled their contract at a cost of $1200
for their initial work. We ultimately used BSA, which
took on-line abstracts, registrations, and published
the abstract book with their in-house proprietary
software and organizational staff. This system was
highly integrated and allowed multiple options to
view and query the program. In addition, in-house
publishing by the BSA was efficient and cost-effective.
The BSA saved us considerable time and produced
high-quality copy, and we recommend them highly.

Some attendees were taxonomists who used this
opportunity to visit local herbaria. Special access
hours were needed at the University of Wisconsin-
Madison herbaria on evenings and weekends for
this service. We took every opportunity to
acknowledge everyone who aided in the conference
on the web, in the abstract book, and in this article.

An effective committee structure was important.
The PAA and Solanaceae groups had separate
program committees. However, good
communications were necessary with each
program committee and the BSA to coordinate
abstract submissions, plan rooms, and print the
program. Other committee responsibilities were
lodging to include a primary conference hotel,
signage at the conference, tours and events, visas,

grants and fundraising, a local and an accompanying
persons committee, and invitation of dignitaries to
address the opening session.

Other Lessons Learned
1. The 5%/95% rule.
 No matter how hard you try to
make registration, abstract submission, hotel
options, and other details clear to your participants,
a small minority of your attendees (5%) will require
huge amounts of your time (95%). The LAC was
responsible for clearly written directions for the
many tasks of the conference, but many people are
very busy, do not read directions, and attempt to
perform all on-line tasks intuitively. Tremendous
time was needed to write back to registrants and get
them to correct abstract or informational errors.
Many simply did not respond, leaving committee
members with the task of researching and filling in
necessary data. Some special requests were
encountered including sending registration detail
and abstracts by email and transcription to online
forms, sending registration money by wire transfer,
making hotel reservations, pick up from the airport
even though all local hotels provided free shuttles,
or securing foreign-language speaking babysitters.

We tried to meet all requests for two reasons. First,
we needed a critical mass of registrants to meet our
fixed costs (accurate, actual attendance was
impossible to predict). Second, we realized that
what appeared to us to be an unreasonable request
could be caused by our failure to communicate
clearly, special needs, unfamiliarity with the web or
browser incompatibilities, cultural differences, or
other problems. Ultimately, our primary goal was a
positive meeting experience for all in attendance.

2. Time commitments. We tried to maintain a
quality conference in the premiere conference venue
in Madison at a reasonable cost. The venue
expenses were considerable, so we tried to
compensate by performing as many organizational
tasks ourselves as possible to save costs. This
included raising funds to keep registration fees
(including food and social events) as low as possible.
Using this model, planning for the conference proved
to be an 80% time commitment for the chair of the
LAC for 12 months preceding the conference, and
40% of the LAC chair’s time the year before that. In
addition, two other LAC members (Bussan, Jansky)
spent 15% of their time committed toward the
conference as the date approached. The other LAC
members donated additional time, in addition to
time spent by the abstract submission and
registration company (BSA) and the program

3. Conference updates. Conference updates were
crucial to communicate developments to all
registrants, especially reminders of deadlines for

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

early registrations and cutoff dates for conference
event sign-ups, hotel reservations, etc. Eighty
percent or more of abstracts and registrations were
submitted in the few days immediately preceding
deadlines. Deadlines were advertised three
months, three weeks, and one week before cutoff
dates. Registration income was critical to running
the conference and local organizers were concerned
to and beyond the conference if the conference was
solvent. However, late registrations were common.
About 15 registrants cancelled and required refunds
and there were 70 late registrants.

4. Announcements. The opening reception and the
plenary session was our only opportunity to speak
to the entire set of attendees. This time was used
to make general announcements, such as meals,
when and where ticketed events were to take place,
and where breaks were to be held. Announcements
were necessary throughout the week requiring a
strategy for getting information to all attendees.
Bulletin boards, notices posted at the registration
desk, emails to the participant list, and verbal
announcements during the sessions were used to
communicate announcements. At the opening
reception, attendees were alerted about where to

5. Ticketed Events. Be sure to anticipate last-
minute requests for ticketed events. We had people
request banquet tickets an hour before the banquet.
Constant communication was necessary with the
caterer and the absolute deadline for a head count
at each event was needed. This deadline must be
communicated effectively to conference participants.
In addition, we had several people ask for refunds
for ticketed events. Be prepared for those requests
by determining in advance whether they will be
granted. Also, try to anticipate creative solutions that
may be offered by attendees. For example, one
person could not attend a tour and asked whether
the tour ticket could be substituted for a banquet

Many participants required certificates of attendance,
and we spent considerable time at the registration
desk typing these individually. Make a standard
attendance certificate on official letterhead where
you can write in the name of the person and a place
to sign.

Personal and Professional Benefits Of Being A
Conference Organizer
Conference organization was such a time-
consuming task that it was often difficult to get
volunteers. Few take on such a task a second time.
The purpose of our paper is to provide future
conference organizers practical experiences
including possible pitfalls and lessons learned to
aid them in their planning, not to discourage

 volunteers. We are glad we took on this task as it
was personally and professionally rewarding.
Service to your community is expected and assuming
that you organize a good conference and serve your
registrants effectively and with respect, you have an
opportunity to highlight your institution and city well,
and gain recognition from your peers. You interact
with hundreds of people, and initiate collaborations
and friendships.

You learn how to communicate much more
effectively. Repeated requests from “difficult people”
who could not seem to follow directions often
showed us that we were at fault through poor
communication or cross-cultural
miscommunications. We gained an appreciation
of others’ special needs, especially the financial
difficulties of participants from underdeveloped
countries. Finally, we learned to see conferences
and volunteers in an entirely new light through the
huge effort needed for the tasks involved. We
recommend these tasks to anyone assuming you
have access to good facilities and willing
collaborators, and enjoy working with others.

Spooner, D.M., S.H. Jansky, and A.J. Bussan. 2007.
Experiences of a local arrangement committee for
a large scientific conference. Acta. Hort. 745: 513-

The full version of this paper is available from 



David M. Spooner and Shelley Jansky
USDA, Agricultural Research Service
Department of Horticulture
University of Wisconsin
1575 Linden Drive
Madison, Wisconsin, 53706-1590 U.S.A.

Alvin J. Bussan
Department of Horticulture
University of Wisconsin
1575 Linden Drive
Madison, Wisconsin, 53706-1590 U.S.A.

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

The Three C’s: Early Botanical

Leaders at the University of


There was a University of Chicago (1858-1886)
before the present one.  It was non-sectarian
although founded, and mostly financed, by wealthy
Chicago Baptist business and community leaders.
Funding was never adequate, however, and
continued borrowing, along with local (Chicago fire
of 1871) and national (financial depressions, Civil
War) disasters eventually forced it to close after 28

Baptist leaders immediately began soliciting
prospective donors for a new University.  They were
able to interest the richest Baptist in the nation, John
D. Rockefeller.  His several contributions eventually
totaled $10.5 million, a phenomenal sum for that
time, which ensured financial stability and funds to
attract a first class cadre of faculty members.  The
site of the new University of Chicago, also non-
sectarian, was determined by a donation of 10
acres of mostly swampy land in the village of Hyde
Park, a suburb (soon annexed) immediately
southeast of Chicago that fronted on Lake Michigan.
Additional acres were purchased, construction
proceeded apace, and the first students entered in
October of 1892, chanting praise to Mr. Rockefeller
(“Hooray for John D., he gave all his loose change
to the U.of C.!) as they passed through the portals.

 A School of Biology was part of the original 1892
academic plan, but it soon proved to be unwieldy,
and in1894 it was divided into six Biology
departments.  One of these was Botany, although
it had neither a permanent home nor a faculty except
for one part-time instructor (John Coulter).  Within
four years, however, Botany would include among
its small faculty three people who would be largely
responsible for the university’s national and
international botanical reputation during its first four
decades.  By coincidence, all three had surnames
beginning with C, hence the “Three C’s” of the title.
Before describing their accomplishments, the
fortunate event that provided a home for Botany
should be mentioned.

In 1895 Miss Helen Culver, a wealthy Chicagoan,
contributed slightly more than one million dollars to
construct a Biology quadrangle delimited by four
buildings designed to provide permanent quarters
for departments split from the original School of
Biology.  She named the quadrangle for her cousin
Charles J. Hull, a trustee of the first U of C, but who
is best remembered today because his Chicago
mansion became Jane Addams’ Hull House.  Thus
in 1897 Botany gained an elegant home, the three-

storied Hull Botanical Laboratory, complete with
rooftop greenhouse.

The first “C”: John Merle Coulter (1851-1928)

Coulter was born in China of missionary parents,
but his father died shortly after John’s birth, and his
widow moved back to her home state of Indiana to
raise John and his brother.  In due course Coulter
attended nearby Hanover College, later served on
its faculty, and later at Wabash College, also in
Indiana. By the early 1870’s he was also doing
graduate work at Harvard University.  Through his
Harvard connection, he was chosen to be assistant
Geologist on the important 1870’s Hayden Survey
of the Yellowstone region of the western USA. In the
field his superior botanical expertise was soon
recognized, and he was appointed as the Survey’s
Botanist.  His Hayden experience and the plant
specimens collected during it contributed much to
the floristic studies Coulter concentrated on early in
his career.

Coulter returned afterwards to Wabash college,
where he founded the Biological Bulletin in 1875,
which he renamed Botanical Gazette in 1876.  He
also acquired a PhD from Harvard.  In the late 1870s
and during the 1880s, while still at Wabash, he
published floristic and monographic works, a phase
of his career capped in 1890 by his co-authorship
(with Serena Watson) of the 6


 edition of Gray’s

Manual of Botany of eastern North America.

In the 1890’s Coulter’s interests shifted toward
morphology and evolution (he became a lifelong
strong advocate for Darwinian evolution), and his
reputation grew as a dynamic teacher and speaker.
He was appointed President of Indiana University
in 1891 at age 40.  In 1893, however, he left to

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

become President of the much smaller Lake Forest
College, just north of Chicago, because its governing
board convinced him that Lake Forest intended to
become the “Great University” of the Chicago region.
The plan was greatly exaggerated, as he soon
realized, but he stayed as President until 1896.

During his time at Lake Forest he did something
unusual for a college President.  He commuted
south to the fledgling University of Chicago on
Saturdays to serve as the part-time sole instructor
in the new Department of Botany, 1894-96.  His
Saturday lectures soon attracted scores of
enthusiastic students, two of whom would later
become the other “Cs.”  It was inevitable that Coulter
would be asked to join the U of C full-time, and he
was appointed Head Professor of Botany in 1896,
a position he held for 29 years!  The trajectory of his
career was truly unusual, perhaps even unique.

The highlights of Coulter’s career at U of C can be
presented most efficiently in outline form, including
only his major scholarly contributions while there.
It should be emphasized that throughout his career
he was in great demand as a dynamic teacher and
as a speaker before both professional and lay
audiences, and he was elected several times to
high office in professional organizations.  His most
important scholarly endeavors while at U of C were
co-authorships with the other two “Cs”, as indicated
in the following career outline.

1894-96—Part-time lecturer as sole Botany
department faculty member
1896—Appointed Head Professor, U of C Botany
1896-97—Elected President of the first Botanical
Society of America
1901—Led the unsuccessful first attempt to
preserve 1500 acres of Indiana Dunes as a

U of C Biological Station.

1901—Book: “Morphology of Spermatophytes” co-
authored with Chamberlain
1903—Book: “Morphology of Angiosperms” co-
authored with Chamberlain

(Includes 250-page first synthesis of what

is now called angiosperm embryology)
1909—Elected to membership in the National
Academy of Science
1910—Book: “Morphology of Gymnosperms” co-
authored with Chamberlain

(Revised and co-authored second edition

published in 1917)
1910-11—Book: “Textbook of Botany for Colleges
and Universities”

(Co-authored with Cowles and Barnes;

the leading Botany text for many years)
1915-1921—Served as President of the Chicago
Academy of Sciences
1916—Elected President of the present Botanical

Society of America
1918—Elected President, American Association of
University Professors
1922—Appointed Chief Scientific Advisor of newly
founded Boyce Thompson Institute

(He attempted, unsuccessfully, to locate it

at U of C)
1925—Retired as Head of U of C Botany Dept. after
29 years, but remained on faculty
1927—Retired from U of C, moved to New York to
Boyce Thompson Institute

(Served as Chief Scientific Advisor)

1928—Died of a heart attack

The second “C”: Charles Joseph Chamberlain

Chamberlain was born and raised in Ohio, where
he attended Oberlin College.  After graduation he
became a high school teacher, and later a high
school Principal, in Minnesota.  He did return to
Oberlin during summers, where he taught Zoology,
and earned a Master’s degree.  He enrolled as a
PhD student at the new U of C in 1893, intending to
pursue work in zoological microtechnique and
histology, but after attending Botany lectures by the
charismatic Coulter, he switched to Botany and did
his dissertation research on the embryology of
Salix.  In 1897 he received the first PhD in Botany at
U of C and was immediately appointed to the
teaching staff, in charge of laboratory instruction.
His subsequent published work on embryology,
gymnosperms, and botanical microtechnique set
the standards for those disciplines for decades.  A
brief outline of his career highlights follows.

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

1893-1897—Graduate student in Botany at U of C
1897—Received first PhD in Botany at U of C, and
appointed to Botany faculty
1901—Book: “Morphology of Spermatophytes” co-
authored with Coulter
1901—Book: “Methods in Plant Histology”, revised
five times, last edition in 1932

(This was the standard work for almost 40

1901-1902—A research year spent with Eduard
Strasburger in Germany
1903—Book: “Morphology of Angiosperms” co-
authored with Coulter

(Includes 250 page book-within-a book

first synthesis of angiosperm embryology)
1910—Book: “Morphology of Gymnosperms” co-
authored with Coulter

(The standard work, revised by them in

1917, and by Chamberlain alone in 1935)
1904-1917—Made several trips globally to study
and collect cycads

(Assembled the world’s largest living cycad

collection in a U of C greenhouse)
1919—Book: “The living cycads” about his travels
and observations on cycads
1927-1941—taught summers and semesters at
US Biological Stations and Universities
1929—retired from U of C at age 66 but remained
professionally active
1930—Book: “Elements of plant science,” a general
botany textbook
1931—Elected President of the Botanical Society of
1935—Book: “Gymnosperms, structure and

(A thoroughly rewritten edition of

Chamberlain and Coulter’s 1917 edition)
1943—Died of a heart attack

(Left behind unpublished monograph of


The third “C”: Henry Chandler Cowles (1869-

Cowles was born and raised in Connecticut.  He
attended Oberlin College in Ohio, developed
interests in both Botany and Geology, and became
acquainted with Chamberlain when the latter came
back to Oberlin to teach summer courses.  After
graduation, Cowles taught Biology at Gates College
in Nebraska for one year, then accepted a graduate
fellowship at U of C in 1895 to study ice age geology
and plant fossils.  Like Chamberlain, Cowles
attended Coulter’s Botany lectures, which at that
time included an enthusiastic discussion of
Warming’s recent book on Ecology.  Cowles was
influenced by Coulter to switch his research to a
study of plant communities in relation to the dynamic
physiography of the nearby Indiana Dunes along
the south end of Lake Michigan.  In 1898 his PhD
dissertation: “An ecological study of the sand dune
flora of Northern Indiana,” followed by three major
papers published from it during 1899-1901,
established the principles of physiographic ecology
and ecological plant succession tending toward
climax formation.  This work established his national
and international reputation early on, and he
continued to study dunes around the world
throughout his career.  His important achievements
are outlined as follows.

1898—Received PhD, U of C, and appointed to U of
C Botany department faculty
1898-1901-—Published three influential papers
on dune ecology from his dissertation
1901 et seq—Advocated, helped found County
Forest Preserves, State Parks in Illinois
1901 to 1930’s—visited dune formations world-
wide on many field expeditions
1904-06—3-volume tome: “Geology” co-authored
with two U of C geology professors
1910-11—Book: “Textbook of botany for colleges
and universities” co-authored with

Coulter, and Barnes (U of C Botanist); the

leading text for many years
1913—Organized and led 10 European ecologists
on extended International

Phytogeographic excursion coast to coast

from July to October
1914—One of the founders of Ecological Society of
America; elected secy-treasurer
1916—Organized movement to create an Indiana
Dunes National Park

(World War I postponed action; Indiana

created a state park there in 1925)
1917—Elected President of the Ecological Society
of America
1922—Elected President of the Botanical Society of
1925—Became Chairman of U of C Botany
Department, succeeding Coulter

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

1934—Retired, age 65, due to Parkinson’s disease
1935—A Special Issue of the journal Ecology
dedicated to Cowles
1939—Cowles dies of complications of
Parkinson’s disease

Final thoughts

The U of C Botany department never had a large
faculty, but an extraordinary number of graduate
students passed through it (more than 300) during
the careers of the three Cs, in less than four decades.
Many of these students later became Botanists of
note during their own careers.  It is also noteworthy
that each of the three C’s served as President of the
Botanical Society of America (1896, 1916, 1922,
1931).  A 1982 book on the history and establishment
of the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore says that
U of C botanists were instrumental in championing
preservation of the dunes as a national park.  More
laudatory space could be devoted to each of these
individuals, but enough has been included here to
show that they led Botany at U of C through its early
glory days, decades during which it competed equally
with larger, long-established eastern University
Botany departments.

{Note: Adapted from a talk on the “Three C’s”
presented at a symposium on “Chicago Area
Botany” sponsored by the Historical Section of the
Botanical Society of America at its July, 2007 meeting
in Chicago.]

-Nels R. Lersten, professor emeritus, Department
of Ecology, Evolution and Organismal Biology
(formerly Department of Botany), Iowa State
University, Ames, Iowa (BA, U of C, 1958; MS Botany,
U of C, 1960)

News from the Society

Picturing the Past

We are preparing a film detailing the history of the
Botanical Society of America, which will be available
online via the BSA website when finished.  In
preparation for making this film, we are gathering
electronic images of all past presidents.  We have
managed to locate pictures for most of the BSA
presidents.  However, we still lack images for

Byron  D. Halstead 1900
F. C. Newcombe  1917
G. J. Peirce 1932
John Buchholz 1941
Ivey F. Lewis 1949
Oswald Tippo 1955

We are asking all of the BSA membership to search
their files for images of these individuals and to
pass them on to us, either as prints or electronic
files.  Naturally, we will return prints once they have
been scanned and we will happily acknowledge the
source of each.

Please send your images or electronic files to

Karl J. Niklas


          Edward D. Cobb

kjn2  @

        ec38 @

Department of Plant Biology

Cornell University

        Ithaca NY 14853 (USA)

Report from the Office

As Dr. Sundberg pointed out early in the Bulletin, in
2007 the BSA had a pretty good year. Our overall
member numbers reached a new high since the
staff team began operations in St. Louis. I pleased
to report that by the end of the year we had 2,969
members (2,222 just a few years ago). More
importantly, student memberships over the same
period went from 359 to 715. Students are taking on
important roles throughout the BSA. This bodes
well for botany, the plant sciences, and for the
Botanical Society of America.

Accompanying this growth, we trust you’ll have
seen a number of positive changes in recent times.
If you’ve had the pleasure of submitting a manuscript
to the American Journal of Botany, we are pleased
to report this process just became easier! We have
moved to Aries’ “Editorial Manager” as a manuscript
submission system. We think you’ll find this a much
more user-friendly process.

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

You will also notice another significant change – we
are continually working to reduce the time from
submission to decision, and the time from
acceptance to publication has been drastically
. We are working with a much faster
production schedule—”eGalleys,” or page proofs
are generated within about 24 hours. And we have
further developments in process that will move
papers live online weeks ahead of print. This will
provide you with unprecedented timeliness when
publishing research.

Couple these new developments with your member
benefits to publish and we trust that if you are not
currently publishing in the AJB, you will want to do
so now!

Plant Science Bulletin itself is undergoing changes.
We are in the process of moving to a new format in
presenting PSB on the Society web site. As with the
AJB, a major consideration is to improve our ability
to provide timely information and better serve the
needs of the botanical/plant science community.
We’ve long been known for a speedy job and
research opportunity site and see this moving out
across all types of plant-related information normally
found in the Bulletin.

We’d like to make sure we are able to reach you via
email if possible. A monthly newsletter and a limited
number of special notices are the extent of what we
will use to communicate. In the main, this isn’t a
problem. However, we are having trouble with some
account types, AOL being an example. Please
check with your email service if we don’t seem to be
getting through to you. Please also contact us if we
can be of any help in this area.

Thanks for your time. We look forward to seeing you
all in Vancouver!

Submit a manuscript to the AJB

BSA Member Benefits


New online Plant Science Bulletin
Update your Member Information

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Join the Botanical Society of America


American Journal of Botany

The only thing constant is change, right?  And so it
is with the American Journal of Botany.  Over the
past year we have gone through several changes
that we hope strengthen the journal and benefit the
members of the Botanical Society of America and
the world of Botany as a whole. OK, we have big

The changes began about a year ago when we
started assessing the journal’s printing and
manuscript tracking needs.  We wanted a printer
that kept abreast of trends and technology and
could help move the journal forward in the competitive
publication world.  We wanted excellent quality,
excellent service, and fast, efficient turnarounds. 
We also wanted to be as “paperless” as possible. 
For our manuscript submission system, we wanted
the process to be simple and straightforward for our
authors, reviewers, and editors.  Our aim is to move
papers through the peer-review process as
thoughtfully yet efficiently as possible, and then
make the research available as quickly as possible. 

To achieve these goals, we selected Sheridan
Press as our new printer and Aries’ Editorial Manager
as our new manuscript submission and tracking
system.  Sheridan Press is one of the leading
printers of scientific-technical-medical (STM)
journals, and they were a good match for the journal.   
They, along with their composition partner,
Dartmouth Journal Services, have allowed us to
reduce the production cycle to about half of what it
was before.  Authors receive page proofs within ca.
24 hours after their copyedited manuscript has
been submitted. The entire process is paperless,
with authors and editors receiving all proofs
electronically.  The “eGalley” proofs, as they are
called, include tools built into the pdf so authors can
annotate them electronically, even if they do not
have the full version of Adobe Acrobat.  The final
article files are transmitted to HighWire Press, our
online journal host, in an XML format that will allow
us to publish online ahead of print later this year.
The process is fast and efficient and will allow us to
maintain an on-time, first-of-the-month schedule. 
So far, so good! 

Editorial Manager is our new manuscript
submission system.  We studied our options,
consulted with other journal editors who were happy
with their systems, ran a test, and chose EM for
many reasons, but the main reason is that the
process for authors, reviewers, and editors is
streamlined, efficient, and fairly self-explanatory. 
It’s not necessary to read through tons of instructions
to submit your paper.  The hard work should have
gone into composing the paper, not submitting it to

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

the journal! The system is flexible, so we can tailor
it our needs, and we welcome feedback.  We
encourage you to check it out and submit your next
research article to 

Along with these major changes, we are pleased to
announce a new member of the editorial team:
Richard Hund, formerly of Elsevier, joined the St.
Louis office as production editor for the journal on
9 January 2008.  We are delighted to have him
onboard, and also to retain Beth Hazen’s
considerable skills and talents as our lead
manuscript editor for the journal.  

We look forward to bringing you more news about
exciting developments at the AJB—so stay tuned,
and don’t forget to bookmark! 

Respectfully submitted by Amy McPherson,
Managing Editor, American Journal of Botany;


BSA Science Education

News and Notes

BSA Science Education News and Notes is a
quarterly update about the BSA’s education efforts
and the broader education scene.  We invite you to
submit news items or ideas for future features. 
Contact:  Claire Hemingway, BSA Education
Director, at

 or Marshall

Sundberg, PSB Editor, at

PlantingScience — BSA-led student research and
science mentoring program

This was a fun and exciting experience.  Botany
”  That is what one student had to say about
taking part in the Fall 2007 PlantingScience session. 
Feedback from teachers about the impact of the
PlantingScience program in science classrooms
is also positive:

Betty Indriolo of St. Sebastian School (middle school-
Akron, OH) says, “This is a great program!  I did not
expect the level of student excitement and
participation that I have observed.

Toni Lafferty of C.H. Yoe High School (Cameron, TX)
says, “Their round table discussions were
amazing…I wish you could have heard them
defending their projects

Your contributions as an online scientist mentor
can make a difference.  Thank You. 

New Professional Development Opportunities for
High School Teachers

We are delighted to announce summer institutes
for high school teachers as part of BSA-led education
initiatives. We invite high school teachers to apply
for two NSF-funded Summer Institutes held at Texas
A&M University.  Brochures and applications are
available online at the links below. 

PlantingScience Summer Institutes (August 4-
13) are designed especially for high school
teachers to explore plant biology content while
learning to incorporate online mentored inquiries in
to their classrooms.  Participants have opportunities
to work with Beverly Brown and Marshall Sundberg,
who authored PlantingScience germination and
photosynthesis  units. 

Plant IT Careers, Cases and Collaborations
Summer Institutes
 (July 7-25) provide extended
opportunities to explore contemporary plant biology
problems and career connections featuring the
technology that support modern plant science and
practice new investigative case skills with students
who participate in summer camps.

Spotlight on Upcoming Undergraduate Education
Events and BSA Member Contributions to Science
AIBS and AAAS co-host NSF Conversation in
Undergraduate Biology /AIBS Biology Education
Summit —
 This meeting (May 15 and 16) at AAAS in
Washington, DC, will focus on the role of scientific
societies in promoting and supporting
undergraduate biology and will include examining
how professional societies can stimulate,
support, and disseminate information about
undergraduate biological sciences education
 To this end, the meeting is divided into two
segments the NSF Conversation taking place on
May 15th and the AIBS/AAAS Biology Education
Summit starting on the evening of the15th and
continuing until the afternoon of the May 16th.
Gordon Uno, Department Chair and David Ross
Boyd Professor, University of Oklahoma,( Richard
O’Grady, Executive Director AIBS, and ( Carol Brewer,
Associate Dean, College of Arts and Sciences
University of Montana, kick off the Education Summit
with a dynamic session on The Role of Scientific
Societies in Undergraduate Biology Education
Reform.  Sessions on the 16


 cover issues such as

Increasing the Pipeline, Teaching Evolution, The
Need for National Standards, and Using E-Science
Resources.  Further information and the draft
agenda is available online.

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008


BioQUEST Curriculum Consortium 2008 Workshop,
Co-sponsored by Botanical Society of America and
Missouri Botanical Garden —
 Problem Solving in
Biology:  Data, Tools and Resources from Plant
is the theme of this 8-day workshop (June
14-21). Faculty interested in incorporating
resources from contemporary plant research into
undergraduate curricula are invited.  Join us at the
Missouri Botanical Garden and Southeast Missouri
State University as we explore a subset of the tools,
data, and resources used in plant science with a
special emphasis on quantitative reasoning,
visualization and inquiry-based learning. 
Introductory workshops held at the Missouri
Botanical Garden will include: (1) GIS Research
and Education, (2) Evolution of Resurrection Plants,
(3) Plant Genomics-lead by BSA member Ken
, and (4) Modeling Plant Growth Data.  Barbara
, Professor of Biology, Washington University
in St. Louis, vice President of the National Academy
of Sciences, will deliver the keynote address.

Additional collaborative workshops held at
Southeast Missouri State University include OER
Commons: Web-based Collaboration and
Multidisciplinary Resources, Introducing Case-
Based Learning with Plant Science and much more.   
Preliminary schedules and application forms are
available online.


Building Upon the Legacy of Botanical Education
and Traditional Knowledge — 
This day-long special
symposium is a highlight of the 49th Annual Meeting
of the Society for Economic Botany will be held at
Duke University in Durham, NC, June 1-5, 2008. 
The symposium will focus on the diverse roles
gardens currently play in botanical education. We
will look at how they can become more involved in
classes and programs to preserve the future of
botanical knowledge and research, and how they
can better communicate the importance of plants in
all aspects of human activities to a wide range of
audiences from university and K-12 students to life-
long learners.  Peter Raven, Director of Missouri
Botanical Garden, is keynote speaker.

h t t p : / / w w w . e c o n b o t . o r g / _ o r g a n i z a t i o n _ /

Education Bits and Bobs 
Is the career pipeline selectively leaky? —   A
forthcoming report published by the National
Academies Press, Assessing Gender Differences
in the Careers of Science, Engineering, and
Mathematics Faculty
, presents results of
congressionally mandated survey of differences
between female and male full time, tenure-track
and tenured faculty in almost 500 biology, chemistry,

engineering, math, and physics departments.  



What does student success look like in community
— Indicators to track student performance
and evaluate intervention effectiveness are outlined
in  Power Tools:  Designing State Community
College Data and Performance Measurement
Systems to Increase Student Success.  
This policy
brief was prepared by participants in Achieving the
Dream:  Community Colleges Count, a seven-state

Want to connect to a K12 outreach community? 
Feel free to join the conversation on a new listserve
open to individuals interested in science outreach. 
This listserve evolved as an outcome of the 2007
National Association of Biology Teachers K-12
Outreach Symposium, organized by the Four-Year
College Section.


Evolution Education Literature 
Evolution Education and Outreach Vol 1, Issue 1
available from Springer in January 2008 includes
original scientific articles, lesson plans, essays,
interviews, reviews of evolution in culture and society,
and reports on evolution across the world.   

Committee on Revising Science and Creationism:
A View from the National Academy of Sciences,
National Academy of Sciences and Institute of
Medicine of the National Academies.  2008. 
Science, Evolution, and Creationism, 3



National Academies Press.  The updated version
provides a comprehensive and up-to-date picture
of the current scientific understanding of evolution
and its importance in the science classroom.
- toc 

McFadden, B.J., Dunckle, B.A., Ellis, S., Dierking,
L.D., Abraham-Silver, L., Kisiel, J., and Koke, J. 
2007.  Natural History Museum Visitors’
Understanding of Evolution.  BioScience 57: 875-
882. The authors report on museum visitors’
understanding of geological time and
microevolution as well as their personal beliefs.
The survey includes visitors to six U.S. natural
history museums.  

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008


Bergwerff, Ken and David Warners.  2007.  Multiple
objectives achieved with a germination experiment
in a science education biology class.  The American
Biology Teacher 
-The similarity of the title to our Planting Science
“Wonder of Seeds” project is what first drew me to
this article.  The main objectives of the project are
to compare germination and growth rates of a
variety of native plants with a non-native invasive, in
this case purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria).
Native seedlings are transplanted and eventually
used to establish a native plants garden in the local
community.  The design is for a spring class, but
seeds are collected in the fall by a different (Plant
Taxonomy) class and stored outside for natural
Carlson, J.  2008.  Thinking Like an Ecologist.  The
Science Teacher
 75: 51-57. 
-The author brings data from the Aspen FACE (free-
air carbon dioxide enrichment experiment) research
site to her high school biology classroom through
an inquiry into the relations among CO


, O


, and


Fogleman, T. and Curran, M.C.   2007.   Making and
Measuring a Model of a Salt Marsh.  Science Scope
31: 36-41. 
-Hands-on activities allow 4-9


 graders to model

the Spartina and snail components of a salt marsh
ecosystem and learn about accuracy and precision
as they  conduct “surveys” of each other’s models.

Marshall, Pamela A.  2007.  Using Saccharomyces
 to test the mutagenicity of housefold
compounds: An open ended hyplthesis-driven
teaching lab.  CBE-Life Sciences Education 6:307-

-Students are required to read primary literature,
propose a testable hypothesis, and design and
carry out appropriate experiments to analyze dose/
response relationships of a test strain of yeast
treated with a variety of compounds students bring
from home.

Porter, Jess.  2008.  Detecting landscape change:
The view from above.  Journal of College Science
 37: 45-49.
-The “Map Dectective” activity described in this
article makes use of readily available resources,
such as aerial photographs, Google Earth,
Microsoft’s Terra Server, etc. as opposed to higher
resolution GIS software, to introduce concepts of
landscape change in the introductory course.  This
article is worth looking at just for the resources.

Editor’s Choice

The University of British Columbia Botanical Garden
and the Virtual Museum of Canada are pleased to
announce the launch of John Davidson: The Legacy
of a Canadian Botanist


-submitted by David Brownstein

John Davidson on Skwoach, ca 1915.    Hand-tinted lantern
slide.  University of British Columbia Botanical Garden and
Centre for Plant Research, John Davidson Lantern Slide

This digital resource tells the story of a remarkable
Canadian.  “Botany John” (1878–1970) was born in
Aberdeen, Scotland, and he emigrated to
Vancouver, Canada, in 1911. Davidson popularized
nature study through illustrated public lectures. He
created the Vancouver Natural History Society and
the University of British Columbia’s herbarium and
botanical garden. Today, many consider Davidson
an environmental folk hero for his conservation

The website houses over 5000 digitized objects,
including Davidson’s herbarium sheets, lantern
slide collection, field notes and speech texts, as
well as oral history interviews and contextual
narratives. is an invaluable resource
for any researcher interested in the botany of
northwestern North America.

Preview of Botany 2008- -

University of British Columbia

Botanical Garden

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008


In Memoriam:

Donald Robert Kaplan (1938-2007)

Donald R. Kaplan, professor emeritus of plant
biology, University of California, Berkeley died on
Monday, December 17 of complications of
pneumonia at Alta Bates Medical Center in Berkeley,

Don Kaplan was born in Chicago on January 17,
1938.  His father was a jazz musician and his
mother was a psychiatric nurse.  Kaplan attended
Northwestern University and graduated Phi Beta
Kappa with a bachelor’s degree in biology in 1960.
He continued his education at the University of
California, Berkeley and studied with Adriance Foster
for his Ph.D. which he earned in 1965.  After NSF-
sponsored postdoctoral work at the Royal Botanic
Gardens, Kew, England, Kaplan joined the newly
established UC Irvine campus as an assistant
professor of organismic biology in 1965 and was
one of its founding faculty members.  After the
retirement of his major professor, Dr. Foster, he
returned to UC Berkeley in 1968 as an associate
professor in the Botany Department.  Kaplan was
promoted to full professor in 1978, and moved to the
Department of Plant and Microbial Biology during
reorganization of the biological sciences.  He retired
in 2004.

As a plant morphologist, Don Kaplan had a unique,
European perspective on plant form.  Using key
concepts and first principles, he approached his
research in a strictly analytical way.  He was most
interested in fundamental structural and
developmental commonalities that underpin plant
form across different major taxa.  Kaplan’s
publications spanned the algae, bryophytes, ferns,
gymnosperms, and angiosperms.

Don Kaplan’s research accomplishments are too
many to enumerate.  He maintained a long standing
interest in mechanisms of leaf development.
Highlights of this interest include: dispelling the
“phyllode” theory of leaf development in
monocotyledons (Kaplan 1973, 1975), analyzing
development of true phyllodes of Acacia (Kaplan,
1980), studying development of the “rachis” leaves
in the Apiaceae (Kaplan 1970), determining the
mechanism of plication in palm leaves (Kaplan,
Dengler and Dengler, 1982a,b; Kaplan, 1983), and
the mechanism of perforation in Monstera leaves
(Kaplan, 1983).  A second major research focus
was the relationship of cell and organism in vascular
plants (Kaplan and Hagemann, 1991; Kaplan,
1992).  Kaplan’s concepts in this arena have major

impacts on studies in molecular biology/genetics
(Kaplan and Cooke, 1997).  The mechanisms
underlying his ideas are not yet completely
understood.  Finally, he was also interested in the
history of plant morphology, especially in the people
who established the basic principles and concepts
of the field as he practiced it, such as Goethe
(Kaplan and Hagemann, 1992), Hofmeister (Kaplan
and Cooke, 1996) Goebel, and Troll.

Don Kaplan’s research accomplishments were
well recognized by his peers and resulted in many
awards.  Among these were: the Alexander von
Humboldt Distinguished Senior U.S. Scientist Award
(1988-89), a Guggenheim Fellowship (1987-88),
Fellow of the California Academy of Sciences (1982),
the Botanical Society Merit Award (1984), the BSA
Jeanette Siron Pelton Award (1989) and Centennial
Award (2006), Miller Research Professorship
(1975-76), and Sigma Xi National Lecturer (1995-

Don Kaplan approached teaching with the same
energy and dedication that he used for research.
During his years at UC Berkeley, he taught a number
of different undergraduate courses including
General Botany and Plant Anatomy, but his great
love was his Principles of Plant Morphology course.
In the first half of this course, he presented his

Don Kaplan, 1976 recipient of the Distinguished Teaching
Award, courtesy of University of California, Berkeley

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

unique perspectives on commonalities and
divergences of plant form across all taxa, and in the
second half of the course he showed the students
many unusual plants (parasitic, epiphytic, aquatic,
desert, salt marsh, etc.) and described how their
morphological adaptations and divergent life
strategies were adaptive in these extreme
environments.  Don Kaplan sparked strong botanical
interests in generations of Berkeley undergraduates
who took the class.  UCB recognized him by awarding
him the Distinguished Teaching Award in 1976.
The BSA awarded him the Charles Edwin Bessey
Award in 2005.

Don Kaplan’s approach to graduate education was
novel, especially compared to modern practices.
He allowed students to pick their own projects that
were not directly related to his own research projects.
His graduate students thus determined their own
approach and techniques to investigate their
hypotheses.  Moreover, Kaplan did not require his
students to co-publish with him.  As a result, the
dissertations of his students were as different and
unique as the personalities and interests of the
students themselves.  He had many Ph.D. students
over the years, including: Dan Franck, Ann Hirsch,
Dan Walker, Judith Croxdale (deceased), Darleen
DeMason, Jennifer Richards, George Ellmore,
Richard Mueller, Jeffrey White, Pam Diggle, Cynthia
Jones, Ned Friedman, Paul Groff, William Sanders
and Carol Wilson.

In addition to botany, Don Kaplan had many other
interests, which he pursued with as much intensity.
Among them were photography, railroads, classical
music, and movies.  Kaplan enjoyed doing all his
own photography and commonly used large format,
sheet film and Ansel Adam’s zone system.  He
authored several articles on railroads, and a book
entitled, Duneland Electric about the electric railway
that ran from Chicago along the South Shore of Lake
Michigan.  Kaplan and his wife, Dorothy, had season
tickets to the San Francisco Opera for 30 years and
had an extensive music library.  Among his favorite
movies were all the Marx brothers’ movies and
George Lucas’ Star Wars series.

Don Kaplan is survived by his wife, Dorothy of
Kensington, California; two sons, Andrew, a
children’s librarian in Las Vegas, Nevada and
Timothy, Pleasant Hill, California, a Berkeley police
officer; and a sister, Barbara Goldstein of Salt Lake
City, Utah.


Kaplan DR. 1970. Comparative development and
morphological interpretation of ‘rachis-leaves’ in
Umbelliferae. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 63
(Suppl 1)101–125.

Kaplan DR. 1973The monocotyledons: their evolution and
comparative biology. VII. The problem of leaf morphology
and evolution in the monocotyledons. Quarterly Review of
48: 437–457.

Kaplan DR. 1975. Comparative developmental evaluation
of the morphology of unifacial leaves in the monocotyledons.
Botanische Jahrbuch Syst 95:  1–105.

Kaplan DR. 1980. Heteroblastic leaf development in Acacia:
morphological and morphogenetic implications. La Cellule
73: 137–203.

Kaplan DR. 1983.  The development of palm leaves.
Scientific American 249:  98–105.

Kaplan DR. 1992. The relationship of cells to organisms in
plants: problem and implications of an organismal
perspective. International Journal of Plant Science 153:

Kaplan DR, Cooke TJ. 1996.  The genius of Wilhelm
Hofmeister: the origin of causal-analytical research in
plant development. American Journal of Botany 83: 1647–

Kaplan DR, Cooke TJ. 1997. Fundamental concepts in the
embryogenesis of dicotyledons: a morphological
interpretation of embryo mutants.  Plant Cell    9: 1903-

Kaplan DR, Dengler NG, Dengler RE. 1982a. The mechanism
of plication inception in palm leaves: problem and
developmental morphology. Canadian Journal of Botany
60: 2939–2975.

Kaplan DR, Dengler NG, Dengler RE. 1982b. The mechanism
of plication inception in palm leaves: histogenetic
observations on the palmate leaf of Rhapis excelsa.
Canadian Journal of Botany 60: 2999–3016.

Kaplan DR, Hagemann W. 1991. The relationship of cell
and organism in vascular plants. Bioscience 41: 693–703.

Kaplan DR, Hagemann W. 1992. The organism and plant
cells in light of Goethe’s comparative morphological method.
In: Mann G, Mollenhauer D, Peters S, eds. In Der Mitte
Zwischen Natur und Subjeckt Johann Wolfgang Goethes
Versuch, die Metamorphose der Pflanzen zu erklaren,
179–1990. Sachverhalte, Gedanken, Wirkungen.
Senckenberg-Buch 66. Frankfurt am Main: Verlag
Waldemar Kraemer, 93–117.

Darleen A. DeMason
Botany and Plant Sciences
University of California, Riverside

Ann M. Hirsch
Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology
Universisty of California, Los Angeles

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Richard Goodwin (1910 



Richard H. Goodwin, Katharine Blunt Professor
Emeritus of Botany at Connecticut College, died on
July 6, 2007 at the age of 96.  He earned his BA, MA,
and PhD degrees from Harvard University.  Goodwin
was appointed Professor of Botany, Department
Chair, and Arboretum Director in 1944, having been
lured away from the University of Rochester where,
as an Assistant Professor, he was recognized as
an exciting teacher and a creative young scholar in
the field of experimental plant development.  In the
two decades following his appointment, Goodwin
expanded the breadth of his research on the
physiology of root growth, and published nearly
twenty scientific papers.  He had collaborators from
California to Denmark, and his work was widely
recognized for its technical ingenuity and scientific

At Connecticut College his interest in conservation
flourished.  He recognized land ownership was
often the most effective method of preservation.  His
approach was to identify important pieces of land,
solicit potential donors for part of the purchase price
(and frequently contributing is own funds), then
bring the package to the President and Board,
convincing both to pick up the difference and take
title.  During his 30-year tenure, the Connecticut
College Arboretum expanded from 90 acres to
more than 450.  The diverse landscapes protected
by the Arboretum have been a key factor in the
development of the College’s programs in botany,
biology and environmental studies.

During this time, Goodwin also became increasingly
active in conservation and land preservation beyond
Connecticut College.  In the late 1940’s he had
pulled together half a dozen colleagues from across
the U.S. who shared his concerns about natural
area preservation and management.  These
scientists were the foundation of what was to become
the Nature Conservancy.  When elected for his first
term as Conservancy president in 1956, there were
just 2,000 members and two state chapters –
Connecticut and New York.  An underpaid executive
director with a home office was the only full time
employee; the annual budget was less than
$10,000, and there were no holdings outside the
Northeast.  By 1958, at the end of his term, an Ohio
chapter had been established, and the number of
reserves had more than doubled.  In 1960, he
negotiated the then-largest deal in the organization’s
history, protecting 6,500 forested acres on the
California coast

The big turn for both the Nature Conservancy and
Goodwin came in 1964 when he was again elected
national president.  In accepting that office he made
a “life decision”; conservation through land
preservation replaced botanical research as the
focus of his non-teaching professional efforts.  Under
his leadership, as its last unpaid president, the
Nature Conservancy developed and adopted
innovative business models and tactics for
conservation that revolutionized the practice of
preserving open spaces.  At the same time, he
organized a $550,000 Ford Foundation grant to
support the transition of the Nature Conservancy’s
staff from all volunteer to paid professional.  This
was a task requiring persistence, vision and
considerable political skill.

Up to his retirement in 1976, Goodwin remained an
enthusiastic, dedicated, and imaginative teacher.
His most lasting academic legacy was the
establishment in 1969 of the major in Human
Ecology.  In the 1960’s he and William Niering
concluded that the complex problems revolving
around issues of conservation and environmental
protection could not be solved by science alone;
effective policy and action required people with a
strong knowledge base in both natural and social
sciences.  They also saw that American higher
education did not have the interdisciplinary vision to
address this deficiency – so why not break the mold
and start such a program at Connecticut College?
In the spring of 1968, the faculty approved the new
interdisciplinary Program in Human Ecology.  The
Program changed its name to Environmental
Studies fifteen years ago and is one of the most
heavily elected interdisciplinary majors at the

Photo by Edward Marshall

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

“He led an incredibly rich and diverse life, and he
made some incredible contributions,” said David
Foster ‘77, Professor of Biology and Director of the
Harvard Forest, who studied under Goodwin.

Goodwin led the effort to create and then expand the
1,200 acre Burnham Brook Preserve in East
Haddam, CT, donating his home and property to the
preserve for research uses.  Goodwin is survived by
Esther, his wife of 71 years, a daughter, Mary Linder
Wetzel, and a son, Richard Goodwin, Jr.

T. Page Owen, Jr.
Associate Professor and Chair
Department of Botany
Connecticut College


R. Scott Warren
Jean C. Tempel ‘65 Professor Emeritus of Botany,
Connecticut College


Crop Science Society Honors

Missouri Botanical Garden’s Peter


Dr. Peter Raven, president of the Missouri Botanical
Garden, received the Crop Science Society of
America’s (CSSA) Presidential Award at its annual
meeting on Nov. 6 in New Orleans. CSSA presents
annual awards for outstanding contributions to
crop science through education, national and
international service, and research.

Raven has served as president of the Garden and
the George Engelmann Professor of Botany at
Washington University in St. Louis for over 36 years.
A past president of the American Association for the
Advancement of Science and recipient of the
National Medal of Science, he is a world leader in
the conservation of biodiversity, a member of the
National Academy of Science since 1977, and has
been elected to more than 20 foreign academies of
science. His early work concerned the systematics
and evolution of the evening primrose family of
plants, Onagraceae. He subsequently worked with
folk taxonomy, coevolution, biogeography, and

Student Research in Plant Biology

and Conservation Symposium

Saturday, April 26

 8 a.m.-5:30 p.m.

The Chicago Botanic Garden

The Chicago Botanic Garden is pleased to host the
second annual Plan Biology and Conservation
Symposium especially for graduate and
undergraduate students. This will be a daylong
event that is focused on providing students with an
early opportunity to present their research to
colleagues. This event will close with an invited
keynote speaker who is distinguished in the field of
plant biology and conservation. We are accepting
abstracts for either posters or 15-minute oral

 Registration is open to anyone interested in plant
ecology and evolution.  Anyone interested in
presenting at this symposium must submit an
abstract to the Program Chair before March 14,

For abstract submission guidelines, please visit

Registration deadline is April 18, 2008.

Cost of early bird fee postmarked by March 28, 2008
is $74. (Chicago Botanic Garden members pay

Fee after March 28 is $99.  (ChicagoBotanic Garden
members pay $79.)

Full-time students enrolled in graduate or
undergraduate program with student ID pay $29.

Symposia, Conferences, Meetings

3rd Meeting of the International


for Phylogenetic Nomenclature

Halifax, Nova Scotia

July 21 – July 23, 2008

We are pleased to announce that the 3rd Meeting
of the International Society for Phylogenetic
Nomenclature (ISPN) will be held in conjunction
with a joint meeting of the International Society of
Protistologists and the International Society for
Evolutionary Protistology (

). In addition to featuring communications on the
theory and practice of phylogenetic nomenclature,

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008


A Short-Course in

Tropical Field Phycology

Dates: July 9-23, 2008
Location:  Bocas Research Station, Bocas del Toro,
Registration Fee:  $500.00 (fellowships are

  Award Opportunities

Colorado Native Plant Society

The John W. Marr and Myrna P.

Steinkamp Funds

The Colorado Native Plant Society supports
research projects in plant biology from the John W.
Marr and Myrna P. Steinkamp funds.  These separate
funds honor the late Dr. John Marr, Professor at the
University of Colorado and the first President of the
CONPS, and Dr. Myrna Steinkamp, a founding
member of CONPS who worked on behalf of the
Society for many years in a variety of capacities.  Both
funds were established to support research on the
biology and natural history of Colorado native plants
by means of small grants. The Steinkamp Fund
targets rare species and those of conservation
concern.  Both field and laboratory studies are
eligible for funding.  Thanks to the generous
contributions of many members and supporters, a
total of nearly $3,000 is available, although individual
awards will not exceed $1,000.  Recipients of the
awards must agree to summarize their studies for
publication in Aquilegia and on the CoNPS website.
Awardees are highly encouraged to present the
results of their research in poster or presentation
format at the CoNPS annual meeting and/or a
chapter meeting.

The Board of Directors is now soliciting proposals
for a February 15, 2008 deadline. Information on
guidelines and requirements for proposals may be
obtained by contacting Board member Jan Loechell
Turner at

 or (303) 458-4262.

Alternately, you may visit our web site at 


this meeting will be an opportunity to discuss the
forthcoming release of the PhyloCode and
publication of the Companion Volume, as well as
development of the on-line registration database
(REGNUM). All systematists interested in the
development of phylogenetic nomenclature are
welcome. Discussions and presentations at this
meeting may influence the future development of
the PhyloCode.

The meeting and associated social gatherings will
be held on the campus of Dalhousie University, in
the centre of Halifax. In order to make the meeting
accessible to all scientists, on-campus dormitory-
style accommodation will be available, in addition
to nearby hotels. Note that U.S. Citizens traveling to
Canada will be required to carry passports.

Conference Language:

Instructors:  Drs. Brian Wysor, Roger Williams
College; Wilson Freshwater, University of North
Carolina, Wilmington; Suzanne Fredericq,
University of Louisiana in Lafayette.
Organizer: Rachel Collin, STRI

Application:  This course is directed towards
graduate students and advanced Licenciado
candidates and will be conducted in English.  Please
e-mail your CV, 1 letter of recommendation, and a
1-2 page statement explaining your background
and reasons for taking the course, to Rececca
Rissanen at

 before March 1,

2008.  Limit 12 students.

For more information see


The Fourth International


Comparative Biology of the


The Fifth International Symposium:

Grass Systematics and Evolution

Copenhagen, Denmark

11-15 August, 2008

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Senior Vice President of Plant

Science and Conservation.

The Missouri Botanical Garden

The Missouri Botanical Garden, the oldest botanical
garden in the nation and a major force in field-
oriented research on plants globally, seeks a new
Senior Vice President of Plant Science and
The Missouri Botanical Garden is searching for a
successful leader, scholar and administrator to
serve in this position. The division’s work is carried
out by approximately 125 staff members who conduct
studies of many groups of plants throughout the
world, but especially in Latin America, Africa, and
Vietnam. The Garden has one of the largest and
probably the most active herbarium in the world
(just under 6 million specimens of vascular plants
and bryophytes), one of the finest and most
complete libraries in systematic botany, and a very
strong program in information technology and
database development. The Senior Vice President’s
primary responsibility is to oversee and coordinate
scientific planning, to review the direction of the
Garden’s overall scientific research efforts, to
provide leadership and support of the division’s
staff, and to contribute to the community of the
Garden at large. The successful candidate will be
expected to play a major role in fundraising for the
Garden’s programs in science and technology and
to represent them locally and throughout the world.
The successful candidate will possess a Ph.D. in
botany or plant sciences, with ten to fifteen years of
leadership experience in an internationally
prominent research and conservation group.
Demonstrated experience in fundraising is
essential. An understanding of and sensitivity to the
effective management of legal and ethical issues is
necessary for the successful conduct of this division.
The ideal candidate also will possess a strong
track record of achievement in negotiating
international agreements with institutions in other
countries and outstanding achievements in
research, publication, and scientific outreach.  
Isaacson, Miller, a national executive search firm,
has been engaged to assist with this important
search. Inquiries, nominations, and applications
should be directed in confidence to: Jackie Mildner,
Senior Associate,

Positions Available

Botany Fellow - Wellesley College

Botanic Gardens (WCBG)

Wellesley College invites applications for a Botany
Fellow, to begin Fall 2008. There is a strong legacy
of botany at Wellesley, and the WCBG has
remarkable plant collections in 15 greenhouses
and 22 acres of botanic gardens, all adjacent to the
Science Center. For more information about the
WCBG, including our educational mission, please

The Botany Fellow is a two year full-time post-
doctoral position, with an optional third year
extension. The Fellow will mentor student research,
conduct research relevant to the mission of the
WCBG, teach one course in the first year (a
sophomore-level course with lab in such areas as
Ethnobotany or Field Botany) and two courses in the
second year (adding a senior-level seminar on a
botanical topic), and participate in the activities of
the WCBG and in a seminar for new faculty,
sponsored by Wellesley’s Pforzheimer Learning
and Teaching Center. In addition to the research
resources of WCBG, the Fellow will have
opportunities for research and collaboration at two
premier botanical institutions nearby: Harvard’s
Arnold Arboretum, which includes extensive
ethnobotanical collections, and Garden in the
Woods, a living museum of native plants and
headquarters of the New England Wild Flower

The salary will be $50,000, plus benefits, in 2008-
09, with a percentage increase for the subsequent
academic year. Moving expenses will be reimbursed
up to $2,000. The Fellow also will be eligible to apply
for faculty research, travel, and pedagogical funds.
While the Botany Fellow position is particularly well-
suited to those interested in attaining faculty
positions at liberal arts colleges, there should be no
expectation that the Fellowship will lead to a regular
faculty appointment at Wellesley.

Ph.D. in botany, ecology, or other relevant fields.
Important criteria for the appointment include:
evidence of outstanding scholarship, a strong
commitment to undergraduate teaching, and a
willingness to be an active and collegial member of
the WCBG and College communities. We are
looking for a person who will make good use of the
WCBG’s botanical resources to increase
opportunities for student learning.

To apply, please send a letter describing your
scholarly and pedagogical interests, curriculum

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Botanic Gardens Conservation

International, (BGCI) a global conservation
organization that networks 800 botanic gardens in
120 countries around the world, has named the
Chicago Botanic Garden as its United States
headquarters.  Effective November 1st, the Chicago
Botanic Garden will host the office of BGCI in the US
and play a key role in helping coordinate the
network¹s regional conservation programs. This
will build on The Chicago Botanic Garden¹s well
established association with the American Public
Garden Association, the Center for Plant
Conservation and the Plant Conservation Alliance,
and plant conservation networks in Canada and

BGCI¹s mission is to mobilize and engage botanic
gardens in securing plant diversity for the well-
being of people and the planet.   The Chicago
Botanic Garden has never been in a better position
to take on this leadership role in the United States²,
said Dr. Kayri Havens, Director of Plant Science and

In the past ten years, the Chicago Botanic Garden¹s
plant conservation and science efforts have grown
exponentially, from two scientists to a staff of 22
scientists and hundreds of graduate students,
interns and volunteers.

Programs have local, regional and global impact,
as scientists study threats to native plants, seek to
preserve endangered species, examine the impact
of air pollution to soil and native plants, and are
collecting to contribute 30 million tall grass prairie
seeds to the international Millennium Seed Banking
initiative by 2010.

In the next five years, the Botanic Gardens
Conservation International will take on three
 * Lead global efforts to reverse the impending
extinction crisis to secure world-wide plant diversity.
 * Enable people and botanic gardens to strengthen
as centers of expertise, horticultural knowledge
and environmental education.
 * Maintain its position as the leading advocate for
plant conservation.

The opening of our US headquarters at the Chicago
Botanic Garden marks an exciting milestone in
BGCI¹s development.  Combining our global reach
with the Garden¹s incomparable regional expertise
is undoubtedly one of our most exciting partnerships,
creating a major force of plant conservation in the
diverse, varied continent,² said Sara Oldfield,
Secretary General of the BGCI.

Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden


Fletcher Jones Foundation


Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden (TSABG) recently
received a scholarship grant of $250,000 from The
Fletcher Jones Foundation in support of Pre-doctoral
and Post-doctoral Scholars at the Botanic Garden.
The scholarship funds will be expended over three
years in support of young plant scientists who are
at critical career developmental stages – either
immediately before or after completion of the Ph.D.
degree.  Funds over the three-year grant will be
allocated each year toward stipend and supplies for
a pre-doctoral student in his or her final dissertation
year and for salary and research supplies for a post-
doctoral scholar conducting innovative research.

“We are extremely excited about the support of The
Fletcher Jones Foundation for graduate and post-
graduate education at RSABG,” stated. Dr. Lucinda
McDane, Judith B. Friend Director of Research at
RSABG and Chair of Claremont Graduate University
Botany Program.  Dr. McDade directs research and
graduate education at the 86-acre native plant
garden in Claremont.  The Botanic Garden’s
research department facilities include a world-
class botanical library, an herbarium of more than
1 million specimens, and two research laboratories.

MaDade further explained the importance of the
grant by saying, “In the sciences, recently minted
PhDs usually spend one to several years in a post-
doctoral position.  The experience these young
scientists will receive at RSABG will position them
well to compete for permanent positions in
academia and industry and to be successful in
those positions.”  The Fletcher Jones Post-doctoral
Scholars will spend one or more years at RSABG
pursuing innovative research as they further develop
their curriculum vitae toward securing a permanent
job in a professional scientific or academic position.


vitae, and three letters of recommendation to:

The deadline is 25 February 2008. Note that all
materials, including letters of recommendation,
must be submitted electronically to the above

Please address all inquiries to Kristina Jones,
WCBG Director, at

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Lenhardt Library Schedule of Exhibits

In addition to being the primary research tool for
students of the Joseph Regenstein, Jr. School of
the Chicago Botanic Garden, the Lenhardt Library
in the Regenstein Center displays portions of its
rare book collection in exhibits throughout the year.
Hours are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday, Wednesday,
Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Tuesday hours are
from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday hours are from noon
to 4 p.m. Closed holidays. Members have borrowing

The 2008 Lenhardt Library Exhibit Schedule

The Language of Flowers - Thursday, Feb. 14
through Sunday, May 18, 2008
Floral symbolism has inspired gardeners, artists
and poets through the ages. Charming examples
of the Victorian fascination with language of flowers
are featured in this exhibit, which opens on
Valentine’s Day.

Temple of Flora - Friday, May 23 through Sunday,
Aug. 17, 2008
The Lenhardt Library¹s latest acquisition, Temple
of Flora, an exceedingly rare book from 1799, will be
on view. This gorgeous edition, considered ³the
single most famous of all florilegia² represents
both the fulfillment of a dream and the cause of the
financial ruin for England¹s Dr. Robert John Thornton

Mushrooms - Friday, Aug. 22 through Sunday, Nov.
23, 2008
Mushroom enthusiasts have always prized accurate
and well-illustrated descriptions of fungi.  Beautifully
illustrated color plates selected from the Rare Book
Collection show the amazing range of species of

Children’s Books - Friday, Nov. 28 through Sunday,
Feb. 1, 2009
Plants and gardens have played an important role
in story telling. Children¹s books selected from the
rare book collection provide a glimpse into the ways
this genre has charmed young readers for

Admission to the Chicago Botanic Garden is free.
Select event fees apply.
Parking is $15; free for members.

For more information and to search the library
collections, visit

> .

The New York Botanical Garden

Announces Collaborative Campaign


Barcode all 100,000 Trees of the


Tree-BOL Project to Jump-start Global Plant DNA

The New York Botanical Garden has received
funding from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation to
launch “Tree-BOL,” a new DNA barcode of life (BOL)
initiative to sample all the species of trees of the
world. The $572,000 grant for a 24-month project
launches a large-scale, focused campaign to DNA
barcode all 100,000 species of trees of the world.
A major multi-national effort, Tree-BOL will
significantly advance plant DNA barcoding in
general. (DNA barcoding uses a short DNA
sequence from a standardized position in the
genome as the unique molecular identifier for each

Trees constitute 25 percent of all plants. They were
selected as the focus for this project for their
economic value as sources of fuel, fiber, food,
flowers, and medicine; as well as for their ecological
value as carbon sinks, producers of nearly half of
the oxygen necessary for life on Earth, influencers
of weather patterns through transpiration and gas
exchange, and definers of many of the biomes and
habitats on land. In addition, certain tree species
can be invasive, while many others are critically
threatened or endangered (e.g., teak, mahogany,
balsa, etc.) Finally, trees have public appeal. Since
the dawn of mankind, trees have inspired the
imaginations of scientists and artists alike. 

The first Tree-BOL workshop for all interested project
participants from around the world is planned to
take place early in 2008 and will launch the data-
gathering phase of the project. Among the
anticipated goals for the first phase of research are
barcoding all the trees of Europe, half of the trees of
North America, and all threatened or endangered
trees protected by the Convention on International
Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and
Flora (CITES). Phases 2 & 3 of the campaign are
expected to target tropical species. Regular
workshops, spaced approximately once every six
months, are planned to share data, assess
progress, and refine goals for the next phase.

Tree-BOL is modeled on similar DNA barcoding
projects already underway to document all the fish
and birds of the world. However, its scale is quite
different; while there are perhaps 10,000 different
species of birds and up to 30,000 species of fish in
the world, it is estimated that there are more than
100,000 species of trees.

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Books Reviewed

100 Years of Change in the Distribution of Common Indiana Weeds
.  Overlease, William and Edith
Overlease- Douglas Darnowski...........................................................................................................................29
Hawai’i the Fires of Life: Rebirth in Volcano Land.  Smathers, Garrett A. and Dieter Mueller-Dombois
- John Z. Kiss.........................................................................................................................................................29
Neotropical Savannas and Seasonally Dry Forests - Plant Diversity, Biogeography, and Conservation.
Pennington, R.T., G.P. Lewis & J.A. Ratter (eds.) -Marcel Rejmanek............................................................29
The Ribbon of Green: Change in Riparian Vegetation in the Southwestern United States.   Robert H. Webb,
Stanley A. Leake, and Raymond M. Turner- Root Gorelick.............................................................................31

Economic Botany
Botanical Progress, Horticultural Innovations and Cultural Changes.
  Conan, Michael and W. John
Kress (eds.) - Winfried S. Peters.........................................................................................................................32
Ethnic Aphrodisiac Plants.  Sood, S.K., Sarita Rana, and T.N. Lakhanpal. - Dorothea Bedigian.............32
Mint: The Genus Mentha. Lawrence, Brian M. (ed.) - Donald Less.............................................................33
Sacred Gardens and Landscapes: Ritual and Agency.  Conan, Michel (ed). - Dorothea Bedigian.........35
Tumeric: the Genus Curcuma.  Ravindran, P.N., K. Nirmal Babu and K. Sivaraman (eds) - Dorothea

Principles of Population Genetics, Fourth Edition
.  Hartl, Daniel L. and Andrew G. Clark.
- Tyler Smith...........................................................................................................................................................38

Benjamin Smith Barton: Naturalist and Physician in Jeffersonian America
.  Ewan, Joseph and Nesta
Dunn Ewan - Marshall D. Sundberg...................................................................................................................38

Light and Plant Development(Annual Plant Reviews) Volume 30
.  Whitelam, Garry C. and Karen J.
Halliday (eds). - Beronda L. Montgomery.........................................................................................................39
Plant Growth and Climate Change.  Morison, James I.L. and Michael D. Morecroft (eds) - Nina L.
Plant Solute Transport.  Yeo, Anthony R. and Timothy J. Flowrs (eds). - Winfried S. Peters.................43

Anatomy of Flowering Plants: An Introduction to Structure and Development, 3rd ed
.  Rudall, Paula. -
Joyce Phillips Hardy..............................................................................................................................................44

The Mountain Flora of Java
.  van Stennis, C.G.G.J (author) Hamzah, A. & Toha, M (illustrators) -
Ranier Bussmann...................................................................................................................................................45
Wild Orchids of the Northeast: New England, New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.  Brown, Paul
Martin. - Linda M.K. Johnson.............................................................................................................................46

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

100 Years of Change in the Distribution of Common
Indiana Weeds.
  Overlease, William, and Edith
Overlease. 2007.  ISBN 1-55753-419-5  (Cloth,
US$92.95)  270 pp.  Purdue University Press, South
Campus Courts, Building E, 509 Harrison Street,
West Lafayette, IN 47907.

100 Years of Change in the Distribution of Common
Indiana Weeds by William and Edith Overlease
presents a fascinating study of hundreds of
angiosperms. Beginning with two previous
statewide botanical surveys (by Coulter in 1899 and
Deam in 1940), the authors examined every county
in Indiana for over 200 species of aggressive plants,
whether native or non-native, which they define as

Their two page introduction is followed by several
hundred pages of distribution maps, marked to the
county level. The first group of weed species each
receive a page with one map per survey (i.e. the two
previous surveys plus the current one). About half of
the species are in this group, while the other half
were newly addressed as weeds by the authors and
thus are shown more compactly at one map per
species, four species per page. Brief suggestions
are offered throughout for possible reasons for the
changes in species distribution over the past 100

This work would be useful to most botanists in
Indiana, both those teaching and those working on
land management issues. Moreover, this work is
useful for many others outside the state of Indiana
for the clearly illustrated picture of various plant
migrations presented. There are species invading
from the north over the past century (e.g. Norway
Maple, Acer platanoides), others from the south
(e.g. Amaranthus, Amaranthus tuberculatus). While
most are new invaders (e.g. Garlic Mustard, Alliaria
peiolata; Silk Tree, Albizia julibrissin), some older
weeds are disappearing due to changes in
agricultural practices (e.g. the lovely Corn Cockle,
Agrostemma githago, eliminated by the use of
modern harvesters, preventing self-seeding).

Buy a copy today, for your classes, if nothing else.

-Douglas Darnowski, Department of Biology, Indiana
University Southeast, New Albany, IN.

Hawai’I the Fires of Life: Rebirth in Volcano Land.
Smathers, Garrett A. and Dieter Mueller-Dombois.
2007.  ISBN 1-56647-818-9.  (Paper US$14.95)
141 pp.  Mutual Publishing, LLC, 1215 Center
Street, Suite 210, Honolulu, Hawaii 96816.

The active volcanism of the Hawaiian Islands is one
of the most fascinating aspects of their natural
history.  The Kilauea volcano is the youngest and
southeastern most volcano on the Big Island of
Hawaii and has had a continuous eruption since
1983.  However, the book begins with the November
1959 eruption of Kilauea which lasted for 36 days
and left a devastation area of about 1,250 acres.
The authors have studied ecological succession in
this devastation area.  The plants in the area were
severely damaged or completely destroyed as a
result of the 1959 eruption.

The authors are plant ecologists, and Smathers
worked for the National Park Service as a naturalist
while Mueller-Dombois is professor emeritus at
the University of Hawaii.  The book is light on
quantitative data but consists mainly of a
photographic atlas to illustrate ecological
succession in the area following the volcanic
eruption.  The mostly color photographs are
informative and many of them are quite dramatic.
The authors divide the succession area into six
different habitats and illustrate recovery in each
habitat.  Also included is a checklist of plants.

While primary ecological succession in the study
site of the Hawaiian montane rain forest system  is
estimated to take about 200 years, the authors
provide a glimpse into the first 50 years.  This book
is written more in a popular format rather than
providing a detailed scientific analysis.
Nevertheless, it can be useful for students as a
clear illustration of ecological succession of plants.

-John Z. Kiss, Department of Botany, Miami
University, Oxford OH 45056 USA

Neotropical Savannas and Seasonally Dry Forests
– Plant Diversity, Biogeography, and Conservation.
R. T. Pennington, G. P. Lewis & J. A. Ratter (eds.)
2006. ISBN 0-8493-2987-6 (Hardcover US$119.95)
484 pp. CRC Press, Taylor & Francis Group, Boca
Raton, FL.

During the last 30 years, over 50 volumes have been
published on vegetation and ecology of tropical rain
forests and at least 20 on tropical, namely African,
savannas. Books on tropical dry forests still remain
disproportionally scarce (Bullock et al., 1995,

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Books Reviewed

Ganzhorn & Sorg 1996, Robichaux & Yetman 2000,
Leal et al. 2003, Frankie et al. 2004). This imbalance
is even more striking when we realize how
threatened are the remnants of tropical dry forests.
The volume under review, the newest addition to
the Systematics Association Special Volumes
Series, is the result of a plant diversity symposium
that formed part of a conference on tropical savannas
and seasonally dry forests held Edinburgh in 2003.
Fifty-eight researchers from 11 countries
contributed to this volume. Thirteen out of 20
chapters deal explicitly with seasonally dry tropical
forests (SDTF). The volume focuses on plant
diversity and reviews fossil data and molecular
phylogenetic approaches to biogeographical
history of neotropical dry forests and savannas.

The focus on the Neotropics is fully justified. About
50% of the word’s remaining SDTFs are contained
in South America, and 12% in Central America. The
Neotropical SDTFs are found in scattered areas,
with the most species-rich in Mexico, Peru, and
Bolivia. Levels of floristic similarity between areas
are often low, and some areas (Brazilian caatingas,
Peruvian inter-Andean valleys, Mexican Pacific
coast) are rich in endemic species. By far the
largest savannas are the cerrados of Brazil and
Llanos of Venezuela and Colombia. Pennington et
al. (Chapter 1) conclude that the fossil record and
dated phylogenetic trees suggest that SDTFs are
at least as old as the Miocene, but that savannas
dominated by C4 grasses may not have risen to
dominance until the late Pliocene.

Authors of this volume address three main
questions: (1) what are the patterns of diversity and
endemism of the floras of SDTFs and savannas?
(2) How and why did endemism and diversity arise?
(3) Are these ecosystems adequately protected,
and if not, which areas should be elevated into
priorities for conservation? The volume is packed
with badly needed data on composition, endemism,
similarity, phylogenies, and conservation status in
16 neotropical areas. Moreover, Lavin (Chapter 19)
deals with floristic and geographical stability of
SDTFs in general and concludes that the
geographical phylogenetic structure of dry forest
clades can be explained by low dispersal rates
among isolated forest patches. Based on
comparison of taxon-area cladograms for Inga
(rain forest genus) and Coursetia (dry forest genus),
he suggests that the rain forests rather than dry
forests are floristically and geographically more
dynamic. Comparisons of the seasonally dry
vegetation of Africa with the Neotropics are made by
Michael Lock (Chapter 20). Key differences include
longer history of human occupation and animal
domestification, as well as greater frequency of
fires in Africa. However, in South America, huge
areas of seasonal tropical vegetation are being

converted into industrial agriculture, a process that
has hardly started in Africa.

Aspects of deforestation and conservation are
considered in the chapters of Ratter et a. (Chapter
2), Durigan (Chapter 3), and Felfili et al. (Chapter 4)
in the Brazilian Cerrado Biome, while Huber et al.
(Chapter 5) deal with the same subject in the
Venezuelan Llanos. Because of its higher diversity
(6429 recorded vascular plant species) and
endemism (35%), the cerrado is considered the
highest conservation priority at a global scale. The
situation is critical since the destruction of natural
savanna vegetation is enormous, far exceeding
both in absolute and relative terms that of Amazon
rain forest. Obviously, only a relatively small part of
the Cerrado Biome could be maintained as
reserves, and the promotion of an environmentally
friendly agriculture is the only hope for some parts
of the region.

What are the reasons for the relative neglect of
SDTF by conservationists? The perception of low
biological importance of SDTF biome, in
comparison with tropical rain forest, may be
paramount (Gillespie, Chapter 16). Lugo et al.
(Chapter 15) stress that one fundamental difficulty
for the conservation of neotropical SDTF has been
the failure to consider it as a single biome, with a
consistent name. Neotropical SDTF have been
virtually entirely destroyed except in the Bolivian
Chiquitano, which was estimated as 85% intact in
2001 (Killen et al., Chapter 9). Less than 4% of the
vegetation of caatinga biome in eastern Brazil is
unaltered (Queiroz, Chapter 6) and only about 2%
of Mesoamerican dry forests are intact (Janzen
1988). Conservation strategies failed to take account
of floristic patterns across the Neotropics, and
some areas rich in endemic species lack protection
entirely (e.g. Peruvian inter-Andean valleys;
Linares-Palomino, Chapter 11). However, given
the urgent need to protect the few remaining areas
of SDTF, a pragmatic approach, protecting any
areas where social and political opportunities
permit, is also necessary (Gordon et al., Chapter

Editors and contributors should be congratulated
for putting this exciting interdisciplinary synthesis
together. This volume is a must have for anyone
who is interested in ecology, floristics, phylogeny,
and conservation of dry neotropical biomes.
– Marcel Rejmánek, Section of Evolution and
Ecology, University of California, Davis, CA, 95616.

Literature Cited
Bullock, S. H., Mooney, H. A. & E. Medina (eds.) 1995.
Seasonally dry tropical forests. Cambridge University
Press, Cambridge, UK.

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Frankie, G. W., Mata, A. & S. B. Vinson (eds.) 2004.
Biodiversity conservation in Costa Rica, learning the
lessons in a seasonal dry forest.
 University of
California Press, Berkeley.
Ganzhorn, J. U. & J.P. Sorg (eds.) 1996. Ecology and
economy of a tropical dry forest in Madagascar.
Goltze, Göttingen.

Janzen, D. 1988. Tropical dry forests. In E. O. Wilson
& F. M. Peter (eds.) Biodiversity. National Academy
Press, Washington, DC.

Leal, I. R., Tabarelli, M. & J. M. C. Silva (eds.) 2003.
Ecologia e Conservação da Catinga. Unversidade
Federal de Pernambuco, Recife.

Robichaux, R. H. & D. A. Yetman (eds.) 2000. The
tropical deciduous forests of Alamos
. The University
of Arizona Press, Tucson, Arizona.

The Ribbon of Green: Change in Riparian Vegetation
in the Southwestern United States 
by Robert H.
Webb, Stanley A. Leake, and Raymond M. Turner
(2007) University of Arizona Press: Tucson, 480
pages, ISBN 0-8165-2588-9, US$75.

The Ribbon of Green is an extraordinary and most
unusual book, very much in the tradition of Bob
Humphrey’s 1987 classic 90 years and 535 miles:
Vegetation changes along the Mexican border.
Forty-three years ago, one of the authors, Ray
Turner, along with Rod Hastings, published a similar
book titled The Changing Mile. All three books
attempt to infer vegetation and ecological changes
during an intervening century by comparing repeat
photographs. Repeat photography is the art of trying
to exactly as possible duplicate an earlier
photograph. Because of the panoramic nature of
these photos, usually taken for the purpose of
surveys, one can usually only discern the identities
of woody trees and large shrubs. The Ribbon of
 covers rivers in Arizona and Utah, with some
limited coverage of neighboring states. Most of the
book is comprised of 23 chapters covering 21 rivers
(the Colorado River justifiably gets three chapters),
using elegant parallel structure between chapters.
For each chapter, the authors provide a subset of
their enormous collection of repeat photographs
and their interpretations of vegetational and
hydrological changes. This is a data intensive
volume. The final pair of chapters provides a superb

What makes this an especially interesting volume
is that it is written by two hydrologists and a botanist,

making the hypotheses about causes of changes
in species abundances and compositions much
more interesting and credible. It also makes the
ultimate moral much messier: Differing riparian
areas have changed in different ways due to
anthropogenic influences. Rivers and even their
reaches are more idiosyncratic than many of us
currently suspect. In retrospect, though, maybe this
is what we should have expected because of the
diversity of damage that people have inflicted on
rivers in the past century – from small to gargantuan
dams, from small to large diversions of both surface
and ground water, to introduction of both innocuous
and highly invasive plants. Humans have certainly
changed the ecology and hydrology of desert
riparian areas, but this book shows us that the exact
nature of those changes is often multi-dimensional
and not so predictable. Sometimes the actions we
have taken seem to facilitate greater biological
diversity, at least of large woody plants.

Not only is desert riparian biology idiosyncratic, but
so is the style of this volume. Common names of
plants are used throughout, with no attempt to
provide a list of binomials. Imperial (English) units
are used instead of metric units. The maps on
individual rivers were each apparently constructed
de novo, resulting in some mislabeling, such as
Lake Powell being labeled as Lake Mead at the
downstream end of the Upper Colorado River. The
all important maps in the synthesis section show
each important woody tree or shrub species and
whether they have increased or decreased in
abundance at each place where repeat
photographs have been taken. This forms a
phenomenal dataset, except that the authors have
so much data that map symbols overwrite one
another, to the point where one cannot discern the
data. Colour map symbols were not used in their
synthesis, but would have gone a long way to
making these maps more readable and useable.

The Ribbon of Green demonstrates how rich the
comparative method can be. Comparing vegetation
and hydrology across both space and time gives a
gorgeous picture of human-induced impacts.
Although the hydrologic data is quantitative, the
vegetation data from these repeated photographs
can only be qualitative. But this is partly
compensated for by the fascinating sample of repeat
photographs reproduced. The large format of this
volume, 31 x 23 cm, truly helps brings out this
richness of detail. This is a book that any botanist,
ecologist, geographer, or natural historian who
works in or even just occasionally travels through
Arizona or Utah should have on their shelf.

 – Root Gorelick, Department of Biology, Carleton
University, Ottawa, Ontario K1S 5B6 Canada

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Botanical Progress, Horticultural Innovations and
Cultural Changes
. Conan, Michael and W. John
Kress (eds.). 2007. ISBN 0-88402-327-3. 278 pp.
Published by Dumbarton Oaks Research Library
and Collection and Spacemaker Press, distributed
by Harvard University Press. $ 40.00.

The present book does not look like what it really is,
namely a conference proceedings volume. The fact
is not mentioned on the publisher’s website and is
so well hidden in the book itself (there’s a note on
the second page, but that is about all there is; the
symposium had been held at Dumbarton Oaks in
2004) that it had escaped my attention until I had
finished reading. By that time, however, it had
become clear that the book actually shares the
character of most proceedings volumes. The
essays in this collection differ very much in style and
form, some have the character of a review, some
that of a case study. Topics cover a diverse range,
from an analysis of roses and scents as metaphors
in medieval Persian poetry and mysticism (M.E.
Subtelny) to an attempt to define what a “truly
sustainable landscape design” can be in the
economic realities of the 21


 century (P. del Tredici).

I personally was most impressed by A. Touwaide’s
reconstruction of the structure of private gardens in
the Roman empire, M. Ambrosoli’s essay on the
role of peasant’s gardens in the northern Italy of the
renaissance, and M. Conan’s multifaceted analysis
of gardening, agriculture, science, and social
progress in the revolutionary France of the late 18



However, a broad range of topics in a book is not
necessarily a virtue by itself, especially if a central
thread is hard to identify. None of the essays in this
compilation makes more than cursory references
to any of the other, and neither is there a summary
chapter that would make an attempt to highlight
common or general conclusions. In the Introduction,
the editors state that “there is no tentative conclusion
to this volume” which is intended to “invite further
discussions and research, before some fruitful
questions can be raised”. Fair enough, but as a
consequence, the book presents itself as a
somewhat arbitrary collection of basically
disconnected papers that are more or less exciting
depending on the particular reader’s interests. I
found the few general remarks in the editors’
Introduction of little help in finding connections
between the individual contributions; maybe this is
because the introductory essay has partly “been
adapted” from a chapter of a different book (footnote
1, p. 11).

At times it seems that not all of the texts have been
edited as thoroughly as desirable. S.T. Evans refers
to a table which does not seem to exist (p. 88) and
presents legends which define features that are not

shown in the corresponding figures (e.g. p. 85); on
p. 94 the reader is referred to a map to see what the
“Land of Food” may be, but the map doesn’t show
it. W. Kuitert shows a variant of Prunus serrulata to
demonstrate its “particularily [sic] deep-red coloring
of young sprouts“ - which isn’t visible on the black-
and-white image provided (p.134).

This collection will probably disappoint readers
looking for a coherent treatment of the interplay
between botanical progress, horticultural
innovations, and cultural changes. It certainly will be
useful for readers with a special interest in one (or
more) of the topics covered by individual papers.
The identification of such papers of special interest
might be difficult, though, because no abstracts are

- Winfried S. Peters, Department of Biology, Indiana/
Purdue University Fort Wayne, Fort Wayne IN 46805-

Ethnic Aphrodisiac Plants. Sood, S.K., Sarita Rana,
and T.N. Lakhanpal. 2005. ISBN 81-7233-395-1
(Cloth US$39.00) 190 pp. Scientific Publishers
(India) 5-A, New Pali Road, P.O. Box 91, Jodhpur,
342 001.

The opening sentence of the Preface to Ethnic
Aphrodisiac Plants
 declares that “knowledge of
aphrodisiac plants is necessary for everyone to
lead a healthy and psychologically contented life.”
The first chapter, ‘Introduction and Previous Work,’
just slightly more than 2 pages long, is the only
narrative  text in this book, aside from a few
sentences in the discussion at the end.  The authors
from the Department of Biosciences, Himachal
Pradesh University, Shimla, India, are well-informed
about ethnobotany, since they define and raise the
history of this interdisciplinary field on their first
page, naming some significant forerunners, and
marvel at the wealth of ethnobotanical knowledge
in India. Yet astonishingly, this plant inventory
includes no scriptures or citations from those ancient
Vedic archives! Their book would be far richer had
they included illustrations from those sources (Rig
Veda, Atharva Veda, Upnishada, Charka, Sushruta)
as applicable, to every species listed. Here, they
have prepared a listing of plants having some
record of aphrodisiac use, citing only recent (20


century) Indian sources, primarily regional floras.

The authors’ summary states that this book is a
compilation of botanical names, English, Hindi and

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Sanskrit, synonyms, family, distribution, parts used,
and active constituents of 456 aphrodisiac plants
belonging to 331 genera in 116 families, of which
2 species (2 genera) are fungi, 2 species (one
genus) are lichens, 6 species (5 genera) are
Pteridophytes, 6 species (3 genera) are
Gymnosperms and the remaining 456 species
(320 genera) are Angiosperms. The arrangement
of taxa is alphabetical by genus name. There are
several appendices; one contains a list of plant
families represented. The others give English, Hindi
and Sanskrit names, and Latin binomials. The
References (six pp) consist primarily of [1] Indian
floras and works about Indian medicinal plants, or
[2] Western, non-scholarly, popular literature having
some general content about aphrodisiacs. The
book opens with color plates of plants. Some of
these photographs are of limited helpfulness, since
they are over-exposed or out of focus.

This volume fails to provide much insight about the
wealth of ethnobotanical information from India,
which the authors assert, because they have not
linked folklore or the ancient Vedas, and 16





 century Catalogs and Materia Medicas, with

each plant registered. Plant descriptions lack any
explanation of the method of use of each species or
in explicit combinations of taxa, beyond name of
plant part, with list of ‘active constituents,’ usually
from a single cited source. To illustrate, a “decoction
of pulverized seed and root” is all that defines
aphrodisiac preparation of Sesamum indicum L.
Here and elsewhere, the catalog of named
constituents is incomplete or incorrect. Active
constituents listed are: sesamolinol, seasamol
[sic!] and ³-tocopherol. Concerning this and all
species in their record, there is disconnect, because
the active constituents mentioned are not
necessarily those that would provoke aphrodisiac
responses.  The authors offer no classic
formulations, or guidelines for administration in
mixtures with other plant taxa, although the literature
holds plentiful references.

Dorothea Bedigian, Research Associate, Missouri
Botanical Garden.

Mint: The Genus Mentha. Brian M. Lawrence (ed.).
2006. ISBN13: 978-0-8493-0779-9;
ISBN10: 0-8493-0779-1 (hardcover, US $129.95).
576 pp. CRC Press, Boca Raton, Florida.

This text represents the 44th volume in the series:
Medicinal and Aromatic Plants - Industrial Profiles,
which endeavors to synthesize the published
academic, health-related and industrial information
pertaining to this economically important flora.

First, I have some comments on a few

technical issues.  I have seen this book referenced
with two dates: 2006 and 2007.  The confusion
exists because the copyright date of the book is
2007, yet the actual publication date (provided by the
publisher) is 12/13/2006.  Consequently, I have
opted to cite the date as 2006.  The book is available
only in hardcover binding, which appeared to be
sound except for a slight flaw (wrinkle) in the corner
of the front flyleaf in my copy.  When laid flat, my copy
remained open approximately from pages 100
through 500, despite the fact that the quires are
glued, not sewn, which is a bit surprising given a
book of this price.  Some disappointing features
included the rather drab, dark green cover (yuk!), the
poor quality of the three color figures included, and
fairly thin paper that resulted in a distracting bleed-
through of text.  The print quality was subpar.  In
many places the text was surrounded by nearly
microscopic dots, which imparted a “smudged”
appearance.  Most of the figures were fairly sharp,
although resolution was inconsistent among the
various contributed chapters.  There seemed to be
no real effort by the editor to standardize the format
of text figures, which reduced the level of continuity
between chapters and made it fairly apparent that
this was a collection of independently contributed
chapters.  On the other hand, some degree of
standardization was achieved by the inclusion of a
separate contents listing at the head of each chapter.
Notable peculiarities included the color figures
(Fig. 6.11; Figs. 10.3; 10.4), which are printed on two
sides of a single page placed between pages 397
and 399.  Oddly, Figure 6.11 is assigned to p. 398;
whereas, Figs. 10.3 and 10.4 (on the other side) are
assigned to “the color plate following page 398.”
Obviously there are not enough pages here and one
gets the impression of entering a literary worm-hole
trying to make sense of the strange notation.
Moreover, all the color figures have black and white
counterparts in the text, rendering one set redundant.
Surely the color photos should have appeared in the
proper position in the text in lieu of the black and
white photos, or been eliminated entirely.  It is
surprising that such abnormalities exist, given that
there is both a series and a volume editor.

Regarding a more substantial evaluation

of the contents, this monograph contains 14
chapters written by 17 contributors representing six

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

countries (eight are from the USA).  According to the
publisher, this book provides information on the
“history, production, chemical constituents, market
trends, and medicinal and nutritional uses” of the
genus.  There is one chapter devoted to taxonomy,
three chapters on cultivation, three chapters on
economic uses, with the remaining seven chapters
on phytochemistry and production.  Due to its
rather narrow focus, this treatment would not be
very useful as a textbook, but is most suitable for
a specialist audience with a specific interest in the
phytochemistry of essential oils in Mentha and
their commercial production.

According to the publisher’s promotional

information, all mint taxonomists should be
relieved to hear that the book begins with “a review
of the correct taxonomy.”  This statement might be
a bit optimistic.  The chapter authors recognize 18
Mentha species (excluding Mentha cunninghamii
as a possible member of Micromeria) based on
their study of 27 morphological, cytological and
phytochemical characters, which were analyzed
using unweighted maximum parsimony (MP) and
Neighbor-Joining (NJ) approaches.  Actually,
neither result was conclusive regarding the
position of M.  cunninghamii, given that the
placement of the taxon was unresolved by both the
MP and NJ trees (the latter labeled incorrectly as a
phylogram), and not necessarily “outside the
ingroup” as argued.  Furthermore, the observation
that only three nodes received internal support
(i.e., bootstrap values) above 50% (51-66%) in the
MP analysis should make anyone reluctant to
accept that result as definitive in any case.  The MP
and NJ trees differed in topology as well, which is
not surprising given the different models of analysis.
Interestingly, the authors did not compare their
result with the study by Bunsawat et al. (Syst. Bot.
29: 959-964. 2004), which is included among the
references cited in their chapter.  The Bunsawat
study, which incorporated combined cpDNA
sequence data, clearly resolved M. cunninghamii
within  Mentha (in a clade with M. australis,  M.
, and M. satureioides [which, incidentally
is misspelled as sautureioides in the book figures]),
with 96% bootstrap support (and that clade was
included within a monophyletic Mentha with
bootstrap support of 98%).  Consequently, I’m
more inclined to accept the results of the molecular
analysis, given the much better support associated
with the MP results.  There are a number of other
disagreements between the morphological and
molecular trees as well, but none is addressed.
Also, the morphological analyses contained no
provision for examining the status of the numerous
infraspecific taxa recognized in Mentha, but
evaluated characters only for 20 OTUs, which
represented the accepted taxa.  For example, two
subspecies of M. arvensis are accepted in the text,
but only M. arvensis (no suspecies indicated) is

included in the numerical analysis.  Similarly, four
infraspecific taxa are recognized for M. spicata despite
only one “M. spicata” OTU in their analysis.  It still
sounds as though there might be a bit more study
needed before the “correct taxonomy” can be
ascertained.  Another problem involves the
characterization of the numerous hybrids that occur
in the genus.  The authors recognize 11 named
hybrids, based on quite diverse data in each case,
with some supported by a plethora of genetic data
and others based only on phenotype or “resynthesis”.
Undoubtedly there still is a great deal of genetic
work to be done on these hybrids before their
parentages can be understood definitively.  This
chapter does provide an excellent overview of the
characters and states used taxonomically in the
genus and includes extensive lists of synonymy
and holotype repositories for the taxa accepted.

Chapter 2 is an interesting account of the

biochemistry and physiology of essential oil
production and micropropagation techniques.  Here
one can find comprehensive information on such
factors such as the biochemical pathways relating
to pulegone (which is a liver toxin in humans when
metabolized to menthofuran), or the subtle chemical
factors responsible for the different scents of
spearmint and peppermint.  The summary of
micropropagation methods would be useful to those
interested in commercial production.  Chapters 3-
5 summarize the commercial cultivation of Mentha
taxa in the United States, India, and China
respectively, and include useful information on
production history as well as planting and fertilization
methods, pest and disease management, and
harvesting techniques.  An entire chapter (chapter
6) is devoted to distillation of mint oil, but I found it
odd that it included roughly nine pages of
photographs of various distillation apparatus – one
or two examples would have sufficed!  One-hundred
thirty pages in two chapters (nearly 23% of the book)
are devoted to an exhaustive summary of the various
chemical constituents of commercially important
and other mints and their hybrids.  There’s not much
prose here, but you will find an impressive, well-
referenced, page-by-page listing of the various
substances that have been found in these plants.
The also is an entire chapter dedicated to the
commercially ubiquitous menthol, which is found in
numerous products.

Readers with an interest in medical or

therapeutic applications of mint oils will find pertinent
information in chapter 12, which focuses on their
biological and toxicological properties.  In fact,
anybody who has ever taken or considered taking
herbal supplements would be advised to read this
section.  There are two pages listing plant species
that contain pulegone, which can have serious
human health effects (see above).  Notably, the
American pennyroyal (Hedeoma pulegioides) has

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

been used extensively as an herbal folk medicine,
and contains large quantities of this substance.

The final chapter on the economic uses of

mints was a letdown; it comprised only three pages
of text (with six pages of references!) and focused
mainly on peppermint, menthol, spearmint and
pennyroyal.  By this time the reader has been
bombarded by repeated references to those
commercial products and it would have been nice
to see this section expanded to present other
examples of lesser-known uses of the plants (what
about mint juleps, mojitos, teas, toothpastes, etc.?),
economic summaries of mint-related products, or
at least some novel information that hadn’t already
been covered.  Also, this section focused much on
the physiology and biochemistry of the products
and really didn’t address the economic aspects of
the products very well at all.  The book concludes
with both a species and a subject index.

If you have an intense interest in mints,

then you’ll certainly find it to be a useful reference,
even though it will cost you “a mint”.  Despite an
unimaginative production that is like so many edited
volumes, i.e., with poor continuity and structure
among chapters, there is plenty of information with
numerous references provided.  On the other hand,
if you have just a passing interest in the group, it
might be better to look for it in the University library.–
Don Les, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT

Sacred Gardens and Landscapes: Ritual and
Conan, Michel, editor.  2007. ISBN 0-
88402-305-2 (Paper US$35.00) 314 pp. Harvard
University Press, 79 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA

Gardens reveal the relationship between culture
and nature, yet within the substantial library of
garden literature, Sacred Gardens and Landscapes
is among the few to focus on what the garden
means in the spirit realm. Sacred Gardens and
 registers how various world cultures
historically perceived, designed, used, and valued
gardens.  It probes the social and philosophical
importance of the garden to individual lives and
societies. It brings together essays from a variety of
perspectives, organized around the metaphor that
sacred gardens and landscapes engage their
visitors into three circumscribed modes of activity:
[1] as anterooms spurring encounters with the
netherworld; [2] as journeys through mystical lands;
and [3] as a means of establishing a sense of
locality, metaphorically rooting the dweller’s identity
in part of the material world.  Each suggests specific
motivations for garden and landscape design.
     Undeniably, Sacred Gardens and Landscapes
is a magnificent compendium about a subject
addressed by few writers: the mystical dimension

of gardens. Editor Michel Conan is Director of
Garden and Landscape Studies, Dumbarton Oaks.
Author of ten scholarly books about gardens, he is
well-positioned to solicit manuscripts from erudite
authors working in assorted sub-disciplines, each
an expert in their field. Thirteen contributing authors
from Canada, Europe, Japan and the U.S. are
among the world’s principal thinkers and writers on
the culture of gardens and bring years of critical
assessment to the question of what the garden
means. Their articles offer exquisite detail about
narrowly defined subjects: surveys of rites in sacred
gardens and landscapes, offering meaningful
insights into the significance of plantings and their
settings in the societies of India, ancient Greece,
Pre-Columbian Mexico, medieval Japan, post-
Renaissance Europe, and to some extent, America.
Superb illustrations enliven each chapter with
photographs of serene natural landscapes,
ethnographic spectacles, and historic maps, details
from ancient manuscripts, codices and
cosmological works.  Together these essays reveal
the profound cultural significance of gardens
previously overlooked by architectural studies of
garden styles.  They provide unique context to the
fields of ethnobotany and economic botany.  This
exceptional compilation brings together sources
that are not readily available to many readers, such
as a much-cited 1982 PhD dissertation by D.E.
Birge, University of California at Berkeley: Sacred
Groves in the Ancient Greek World
, in Bonnechere’s
article: ‘The place of the sacred grove (Alsos) in the
mantic rituals of Greece.’
     Having asserted my intense admiration of this
olume, as I examine Sacred Gardens and
 carefully in search of coverage about
ome of my personally preferred subjects, I observe
hat despite its wide scope, it is not entirely
omprehensive. One omitted subject that would be
good companion piece to García-
Zambrano’s‘Ancestral rituals of landscape
exploration and appropriation among indigenous
communities of early colonial Mexico,’ and that
deserves meaningful consideration, is African
sacred groves. Volunteer experience with Sacred
Forests in western Kenya motivates this reviewer’s
investigation of that literature. Many published
studies contribute to that subject, e.g., Prussin
(1999), an overview of African sacred sites, with
particular focus on the Cosmic Tree, Amoako-Atta
(1998), details about sacred forests of Ghana, de
Maret (2002) about the Congo, and Rodgers (1996)
and Ylhäisi (2006) about Tanzania.

     Sacred groves are present in Nigerian mythology too.
The Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove, containing dense
forests, is located just outside the city of Osogbo, and is
one of the last virgin high forests in Nigeria. It is dedicated
to the fertility god in Yoruba mythology, and is dotted with
shrines and sculptures. The grove was designated an
UNESCO World Heritage Site (2005). The Osun Grove is

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

a tangible expression of Yoruba divinatory and cosmological
systems; its annual festival is a living thriving and evolving
response to Yoruba beliefs in the bond between people,
their ruler and the Osun goddess.  Falade’s (1990)
description of the place of the sacred in historic Yoruba
palace gardens, gives indication to changing royal tastes
in trees, and shrinking forests, referencing early
observations by Clapperton (1828) and Frobenius’ 1910-
1912 expeditions.
     Similarly, it would be an interesting comparison to
juxtapose Bernal-García’s ‘Mexico-Tenochtitlan’s Desert
Garden’ that blends garden, ritual, myth and history, with
a chapter about analogous themes celebrating the African
earthly paradise. Inspiration is available for example, in
William Wenk’s utterly transcendental photograph, ‘A garden
in the Sahara’ in Faith, the section opening The Meaning
of Gardens
 (Francis and Hester, eds. 1990: 23).
Westermarck’s outstanding Ritual and Belief in Morocco
(1926) is another indispensable source that provides
numerous local examples of landscapes that offer Baraka,
     Another big drawback of this book frustrates this
reviewer. The arrangement makes it extremely
cumbersome to search bibliographic information. Literature
cited never appears at end of a chapter as is customary
in scientific publications.  Since sources are not summarized
anywhere, it is difficult to evaluate what references are
included and which are missing, in addition to making it
nearly impossible find a citation again without creating an
index of one’s own!  The reader must hunt through the small
font size footnotes at the bottom of each page, to unearth
the sources cited.
-Dorothea Bedigian, Research Associate, Missouri
Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO
Literature Cited
Amoako-Atta, B. 1998. Preservation of Sacred Groves in
Ghana: Esukawkaw Forest Reserve and its Anweam
Sacred Grove. Working Papers, South-South Co-operation
Programme for Environmentally Sound Socio-Economic
Development in the Humid Tropics, UNESCO, Paris.
de Maret, P. 2002. Urban origins in central Africa: the case
of Kongo. Pages 1-13 In: P. Sinclair, éd., The Development
of Urbanism in Africa, Uppsala Universiteit, Inst f arkeologi
och antik historia, Afrikansk och jämförande arkeologi,
Falade, J.B.  1990. Yoruba Palace Gardens.  Garden
 18(1): 47-56.
Francis, M. and R.T. Hester, eds. 1990.  The Meaning of
Gardens: Idea, Place, and Action. MIT Press, Cambridge,
Prussin, L. 1999. Non-Western sacred sites: African
models.  Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians
58(3): 424-433.
Rodgers, W.A. 1996. Miombo woodlands. Pages 299–325
In: T.R. McClanahan and T.P. Young, eds., East African
Ecosystems and their Conservation. Oxford University
Press, Oxford, UK.
UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Westermarck, E. 1926. Ritual and Belief in Morocco.  Vol.
1. Macmillan & Co., London.
Ylhäisi, J. 2006. Traditionally Protected Forests and Sacred
Forests of Zigua and Gweno Ethnic Groups in Tanzania.
Ph.D. dissertation, University of Helsinki, Faculty of Science,
Department of Geography and University of Helsinki,
Institute of Development Studies.  University of Helsinki,

Turmeric: the Genus Curcuma. Ravindran, P.N., K.
Nirmal Babu and K. Sivaraman, eds. 2007.      ISBN:0-
8483-7034-5 (cloth US$149.95) 484 p.   CRC
Press, Taylor & Francis Group, 6000 Broken Sound
Parkway NW, Suite 300, Boca Raton, FL 33487-

Turmeric: the genus Curcuma is a comprehensive
monographic treatment that delves into many
aspects about turmeric: botany, genetic resources,
crop improvement, processing, biotechnology,
pharmacology, medicinal and traditional uses, and
its service as a spice and flavoring. Experts from
India, Japan, U.K. and U.S.A. offer a thorough
examination of turmeric’s cultivation, market trends,
processing, products and medicinal properties.
Ayurveda has taught for millennia that turmeric
cleanses the body, alleviates pain, balances
digestion, purifies body and mind, clears skin
diseases, expels phlegm, and invigorates the blood;
modern science now shows that it produces
glutathione-s-transferase that detoxifies the body
and strengthens the liver, heart and immune
system. Today, turmeric has acquired great
importance for its anti-aging, anti-cancer, anti-
Altzheimer, antioxidant and other medicinal
properties. It has potential in preventing and treating
conditions including ulcers, infections and arthritis.

Comparing traditional uses with advanced scientific
investigations, the book provides a wide-ranging
view of the medicinal value and health benefits of
turmeric, and explores turmeric’s decorative and
food qualities. Coverage includes turmeric’s history,
diversity, production, and chemical constituents.

Publicity about this book states that senior editor
P.N. Ravindran is a foremost spice scientist for the
Indian Council for Agricultural Research,  Project
Coordinator (Spices) and Director, Indian Institute
of Spices Research, Calicut, the founding
coordinating director of the Centre for Medicinal
Plants Research, Kottakkal, Kerala and the Indian
Society for Spices. He was chief editor of the Journal
of Spices and Aromatic Crops. He is a veteran editor
of monographic volumes on spices in this series:
Black pepper (2000), Cardamom-the genus
 (2002), Cinnamon & Cassia-the genus
 (2004) and Ginger-the genus

Ravindran contributed the concise introductory
chapter of this volume: Turmeric - The Golden Spice
of Life. He indicates that turmeric has 6000 years of
documented history of use as medicine, and strong
associations with the socio-cultural life of people of
the Indian subcontinent. Its yellow-orange rhizome
led to its association with the sun, during the Vedic
period. A wild turmeric progenitor has not yet been
identified. It is cultivated extensively in India, followed

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

by Bangladesh, China, Thailand, Cambodia,
Malaysia, Indonesia and Philippines (although the
source and date of these statistics was not stated).
Ravindran includes lists of common names of
turmeric and related species in different languages,
describes its historic use as dye plant in
combination with lemon or lime juice, indigo or rind
of pomegranate, and with various mordents.
Unfortunately, none of these terms is included in the
Index; hence, a researcher could not find that
information easily, unless given to dedicated, careful
reading of every chapter. Turmeric is employed to
impart yellow coloration to clothes in Kerala, and in
Tamil Nadu, cleanses the body of the deceased.
Ravindran indicates that India is the only country
where there is a strong research and development
base for turmeric.

Turmeric is associated intimately with many daily
customs. Ravindran relates several lush
illustrations of marriage customs involving turmeric:
“the parents of the bride and bridegroom pour
turmeric water from a conch shell or from a leaf over
their hands seven times, thereby concluding the
marriage ceremony,” and details about the nuptial
bath: “married women rub their heads [of bride and
groom] with sesame oil followed by smearing the
exposed parts of their bodies with powdered
kumkum (turmeric powder mixed with lime).”

Editors Ravindran and Nirmal Babu with Shiva are
authors of the second chapter, Botany and Crop
Improvement of Turmeric. Enriched with line
drawings of plant, floral and rhizome structure, and
photographs, species and cultivar diversity, anatomy,
floral biology, selection and crop improvement
receive attention.

Central to the subject of this series, is Phytochemistry
of the Genus Curcuma, by Nahar and Sarkar.   We
learn that the name of the genus Curcuma came
from the Arabic word ‘kurkum,’ which originally
meant saffron, but now is used for turmeric only.
Diphenylalkanoids are the prominent constituents.
Structures shown here are scrutinized
pharmacologically in the same authors’ subsequent
chapter: Bioactivity of Turmeric. Those activities are
extensive: crude extracts treat a multitude of
disorders - digestive, osteoarthritis, atherosclerosis
and cardiac diseases, cancer and tumors,
antioxidant/radical scavenging property, liver
disease, antimicrobial, wound healing, eye
disorders, anti-fertility, anti-inflammatory,
hypoglycemic effect and diabetes. Isolated
compounds in addition, have nematicidal and
mosquitocidal activity.

Editor K. Nirmal Babu is first author of another focal
chapter, Biotechnology of Turmeric and Related
Species.  Senior Scientist and head of the

biotechnology group at the Indian Institute of Spices
Research, Calicut he has 20 years experience in
the area of spice research, and has produced in
collaboration, six spice varieties and has developed
tissue culture protocols for over 35 species of
spices. He co-edited (with P.N. Ravindran) the CRC
monographs on Cinnamon & Cassia,  Ginger and
this volume. Micropropagation, field evaluation,
induced variation and RAPD characterization of
somaclones, isolation of protoplasts, synthetic
seeds, conservation of genetic resources, and
molecular characterization are considered.

Agronomy of Turmeric, by co-editor Sivaraman,
addresses conventional practices: time of planting,
planting material, depth of planting, seed rate,
planting methods, mulching, nutrition and
micronutrients, cropping systems, irrigation, weed
management, harvesting and seed preservation.
Diseases of Turmeric, Insect Pests of Turmeric,
Post-harvest Technology and Processing of
Turmeric, expand the coverage of crop husbandry.

Curcumin - Biological and Medicinal Properties,
written by an international team of nine authors,
covers physiological and biochemical expression,
and appears to be the heart of this volume. It
combines an exhaustive 20 page literature review
with detailed analysis of the medicinal properties of
turmeric. This chapter is particularly well written and
well-organized, with a useful summary table,
Chemopreventive Effects of Curcumin that lists
each specific effect with a corresponding citation to
literature referenced. Their Conclusion is especially
reassuring: curcumin protects against cancer,
cardiovascular disease and diabetes, and shows
preventive as well as therapeutic effects against
Alzheimer’s, MS, cataract formation, AIDS, and drug-
induced nonspecific toxicity in the heart, lung and

Turmeric: the Genus Curcuma, the first reference
work about turmeric, provides exhaustive coverage,
and will interest botanists and professionals in the
perfumery and food industries and to those
interested in alternative and conventional medicine.
It will enrich library collections of universities and
medical schools.  As this is the twelfth volume in the
Medicinal and Aromatic Plants series that I have
perused, there is one variance from other works in
this superb series: the Index of Turmeric  is very
incomplete. It omits countless essential search
terms that readers would benefit from reaching,
such as areca nut, indigo, neem, Onam festival,
sesame, and names of all disease-causing
organisms. An observant reader can find a few
typographical errors, and in places, grammatically
awkward phrases, e.g., “biological effects are being
researched upon during the past 50 yr or so” (p 12).
Nevertheless, this volume in the splendid Medicinal

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Benjamin Smith Barton: Naturalist and Physician
in Jeffersonian America.
  2007.  Ewan, Joseph
and Nesta Dunn Ewan (edited by Victoria C.
Hollowell, Eileen P. Dugan, and Marshall R. Crosby).
ISBN 978-1-930723-35-1  (Cloth  US$55.00)
1127pp.  Missouri Botanical Garden Prwess, P.O.
Box 299, St. Louis, Missouri.

The names that frequently come to mind when
thinking about early American botanists are the
Bartrams, John and William, who lived and worked
in the Philadelphia area, and who are mentioned
10 times in the “Calendar of Events of Botany in the
United States” in Ewan’s (1969) A short history of
botany in the United States
.  Benjamin Smith Barton,
also of Philadelphia and a colleague and friend of
William and John, Jr., has a single entry.  With the
current volume, Joe and Nesta have made up for
this “slight.”  This is an imposing, yet surprisingly
readable, biography of the first professional
naturalist in the United States.

Principles of Population Genetics, Fourth Edition,
Daniel L. Hartl and Andrew G. Clark. 2007. 565 pp.
0-87893-308-5. $93.95 (hbk). Sinauer Associates,
Sunderland, MA.

Now in it’s fourth edition, Hartl and Clark’s Principles
of Population Genetics provides a comprehensive
introduction to the discipline. While the target
audience is advanced undergraduate and graduate
students, the depth and breadth of the material
covered will also serve as a reference for researchers
in related fields.

The book starts with a surprisingly weak introduction.
The first 40 pages provide a disjointed overview of
basic univariate statistics, Mendelian genetics,
molecular lab methods, and various applications of
genetic markers. I was left with the impression that
bits and pieces of several different essays had been
pasted together. Brief descriptions of the mechanics
of assessing RFLPs and AFLPs are given. However,
the methods used to assess SNPs, which feature
prominently in later chapters, are not presented at
all. Given the variety of molecular markers currently
in use, a more detailed introduction is warranted. On
the other hand, any student with sufficient
mathematical background to cope with the formulas
developed in later chapters will not need an
introduction to concepts of mean and variance.

Thankfully, subsequent chapters provide coherent,
detailed treatments of their respective topics.
Separate chapters deal with genetic variation, drift,
mutation, selection, population subdivision,
molecular population genetics, and quantitative
genetics. Each chapter starts with an introduction to
basic principles and assumptions, which serve as
the basis for increasingly sophisticated models.
The discussion is frequently illustrated with worked
examples, and each chapter concludes with a list of
additional problems, with solutions at the end of the
book. This will be a great benefit to students working
with the text, but may be distracting to researchers
looking for a reference book.

The final two chapters are entirely new in the fourth
edition, reflecting the dramatic expansion in the field

that has occurred in the decade since the previous
edition was released. Chapter 9 addresses
population genomics and the possibilities that
arise from our increasing access to the entire
genome of study organisms. The final chapter,
devoted to human population genetics, is the only
part of the book that focuses on application rather
than theory. This is a shortcoming, as the book
would be of greater interest, and appeal to a broader
audience, with more applied examples to balance
the presentation of abstract concepts. There is a
conspicuous absence of any discussion of
conservation genetics.

The pace of the presentation is brisk but not
overwhelming. This will not be an easy read for
students, but careful readers who take advantage
of the problems will gain a sound foundation. Most
of the text should be accessible to those without a
strong math background, but some familiarity with
calculus and probability will be necessary to fully
grasp all of the material. The cited references
include both classic works and recent papers,
making this a valuable point of entry for graduate
students. The theoretical focus is, for the most part,
taxon-neutral. However, while this book will provide
a fine introduction to the discipline, I hope that future
editions will include more examples of applications
to plants (and animals) to round out the

-Tyler Smith, McGill University

and Aromatic Plants - Industrial Profiles series, is
an essential guide to the spice.

-Dorothea Bedigian, Research Associate, Missouri
Botanical Garden.

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Light and Plant Development (Annual Plant
Reviews), Volume 30
. Garry C. Whitelam and Karen
J. Halliday (eds). Blackwell Publishing, Oxford, UK.

“Light and Plant Development”, a new volume in the
Annual Plant Reviews series by Blackwell
Publishing, provides a comprehensive review of
the relationship between light and the
developmental plasticity of plants in a series of
complementary chapters. The text progresses from
initial discussions of the photoreceptors that
perceive light in plants through considerations of
the signal transduction pathways that connect light
perception to plant morphogenic changes. Finally,
a brief treatment of the implications of applied
photobiology is also presented.

The opening chapters of the text that comprise Part
I review the photoreceptor families in plants
extensively.  For each class of light-absorbing
receptors, details are provided about the

The basic arrangement of chapters is chronological
beginning with “Antecedents and Contemporaries”
in Chapter one and ending with dispersal of his
estate 30 chapters later.  The great volume of the text
is due primarily to the extensive use of full quotations
of his extensive correspondence with friends,
colleagues, naturalists and physicians in Europe
and Latin America as well as throughout the United
States.  While these block quotations tend to interrupt
the flow of the narrative story (they can be skipped),
they often provide insights and interesting factoids
of both historical and botanical interest.  For instance,
at President Jefferson’s request Barton instructed
Meriwether Lewis on Natural History following
ratification of the Louisiana Purchase (he was a
frequent correspondent and visitor with Jefferson
and provided a letter of introduction to Jefferson for
Humboldt upon his visit to the U.S. in 1804) and was
one of those responsible for the scientific disposition
of the collected specimens.  In 1805 Jefferson
wrote: “…I send you drawings & specimens of the
seed, cotton, & leaf of the Cotton Tree of the Western
country, received from Genl. Wilkinson at St. Louis.
To these I must add that it appears from the journals
of Lewis & Clarke that the boughs of this tree are the
sole food of the horses up the Missouri during the
winter.” (p 543).

Botanists will find many of the chapters to be of
particular interest.  Chapter 13, America’s first
Textbook of Botany not only describes Barton’s
“Elements of Botany, first published in 1803, but
connects it with contemporary European works and
subsequent texts by Nuttall, Eaton, and Gray.
Biogeography, Humboldt, and Economic Botany is
the subject of chapter 14.  Humboldt spent some
time with Barton discussing plant geography and
makes several citations to Barton in at least two of
his books.  Humboldt also noted the economic
advantage of his new American acquaintances; “I
am sure that my friends Messrs. Jefferson, Madison,
Gallatin, Wistar, Barton and others will be able to
obtain a large number [of subscriptions].  An English
edition, therefore, ought to consist of a least 4,000
copies.” (p. 447)

It is curious that Humboldt saw Barton as one of the
keys to successful sales of his book because
monetary problems seemed to haunt Barton
throughout his life, beginning with the alleged theft
of funds from the Edinburgh Natural History Society,
of which he was an officer while a student at the
university, through the resolution of his estate upon
his death.  The book also makes clear that while
Barton had many notable successes in botany,
natural history, and as a medical instructor, he also
had disappointments.  He made heavy use of
Bartram’s Botanical Garden but was unsuccessful
in establishing his own at the university (Chapter
18).  He also was enthusiastic about the usefulness

of a herbarium, but although he had a substantial
personal collection he was not able to follow through
on building it through exchanges with other
collectors.  As a result he was not able to publish the
definitive Flora he envisioned for years.

Appendix I is a chronological compilation of Barton’s
writings, 180 of which have definite attribution and
another two dozen included as “Some
unaccomplished publications” – projects which he
wrote about but apparently never produced.  The
references are extensive and there are separate
indices of Flora, Fauna, and People mentioned in
the text.  This title is number 100 in the Garden’s
Monographs in Systematic Botany.  It is a tribute to
the authors and a tribute to the subject of their work.
If you have any interest in the history of botany in the
United States, this book belongs on your book shelf;
it should be in every College and University library.

-Marshall D. Sundberg, Department of Biology,
Emporia State University, Emporia, KS.

Ewan, Joseph.  1969.  A short history of botany in
the United States
.  New York: Hafner Publishing

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

identification and characterization, subcellular
localization, photoreceptor photochemistry,
biochemical mechanisms, downstream signaling
components and structural analyses.
Phytochromes, the most well-studied of the plant
photoreceptors are discussed first (Chapter 1). The
authors provide a brief, yet thorough, history of
phytochrome discovery and isolation and review
data on phytochrome functions in plants.  The
chapter covers early studies implicating the
involvement of a unique pigment in
photomorphogenesis, in vitro and in vivo studies of
the individual members of the phytochrome family
in plants, the role of phytochrome-interacting factors,
as well as recent breakthroughs in phytochrome
biology that include crystallization of a bacterial-
derived phytochrome.

Cryptochromes, one class of blue/UV-A
photoreceptors, are covered in sufficient detail
including discussions of the relationship of these
photoreceptors to class I DNA photolyases and
individual families of cryptochromes found in plants
and their distinct roles in the regulation of
photomorphogenesis (Chapter 2). Phototropins are
also blue/UV-A receptors and are involved in plant
movement responses. The basic discussion of
plant phototropins is expanded to encompass
related proteins in other organisms, including fungi
and bacteria (Chapter 3).

Having introduced the distinct families of
photoreceptors found in plants, succeeding
chapters contain reviews of the current base of
knowledge about photoreceptor signal transduction
in Part II.  Again the discussion is initiated with the
phytochrome pathway. Phytochrome-interacting
factors (Chapter 4) are covered with regards to the
methods by which they were isolated.  The
discussion extends from the deeply studied PIF3 to
other factors also associated with phytochromes.
Subsequent chapters contain detailed information
about the roles of protein modification in light
signaling pathways in plants. A thorough discussion
of the impact of phosphorylation and
dephosphorylation on the regulation of protein
activity, and thus signal transduction, is included
(Chapter 5). Also included is information about the
central role of ubiquitination and proteasome-
mediated protein degradation in the regulation of
light-dependent transduction and modulation of
gene expression in response to light (Chapter 6).

Part II concludes with a review of an area of plant
photoreception about which much is still to be
discovered. In addition to UV-B light inducing stress
and damage responses in plants, low levels of UV-
B have been shown to induce photomorphogenic
response in plants through a UV-B receptor that has
not been identified.  These responses and our

current understanding of UV-B signal transduction
in plants are reviewed, including the isolation and
characterization of UV-B signaling mutants (Chapter

The third part of this volume delves into
physiological responses of plants to light. The
photocontrol of flowering is discussed first (Chapter
8). The authors incorporate into their discussion
information about the role of light in the induction of
flowering, including photoperiodic induction of
flowering, and the acceleration of flowering that
occurs during shade avoidance. The regulation of
shade avoidance and the perception of red:far-red
ratio by phytochromes are further detailed in a
separate chapter (Chapter 9). Photoreceptors
interact with other environmental signals in complex
networks that allow plants to integrate information
about the external environment and result in
coordinated developmental responses. Such
interactions include light and the circadian clock,
light and hormones and light and temperature and
are discussed in suitable detail with specific
examples of each (Chapter 10).

The final section of this volume (Part IV) features
applied photobiology in discussions of
photoreceptor biotechnology (Chapter 11) and light-
quality manipulation of plant development in
horticulture (Chapter 12). Topics covered include
photoreceptor regulation as related to the control of
agronomic plant traits. Much of the work that has
been completed centers on phytochromes and
phytochrome-dependent photomorphogenesis.  In
addition to work related to controlling plant size and
plant responses such as shade avoidance and the
regulation of flowering, other non-crop related
studies are discussed that take advantage of current
knowledge of photoreceptors, including successful
efforts to use photoreceptors as fluorescent probes
and to impart photoregulation of gene expression.
Also included is an insightful discussion about
practical applications of knowledge about plant
responses to distinct wavelengths of light by
horticulturalists to impact plant growth and
development through the use of specialized lighting
or utilization of optimized spectral filters or colored
mulch products.

In summary, this volume fully achieves its goal of
providing an overview of the latest developments in
our understanding of plant photoreceptors and
related signal transduction cascades, in addition
to covering applied photobiology. Designed for
researchers and professionals in plant biology
and related disciplines, this text is an extremely
valuable edition for those working in plant
photobiology and intersecting research areas. 
Beronda L. Montgomery, Michigan State University,
East Lansing, MI 48824

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Plant Growth and Climate Change edited by James
I. L. Morison and Michael D. Morecroft, 2006, ISBN
1-4051-3192-6, 213 pages, (hardcover US
$199.99), Blackwell Publishing Ltd. Oxford, United

Volcanic eruptions, continental drift, meteoritic
impacts, mountain building processes, solar output,
variations in earth’s orbital axis, and changes in
atmospheric gases have contributed to global
climate change throughout the Earth’s geologic
history.  The Earth is presently in an interglacial
interval.  Scientific challenges such as rising
temperatures, melting of glaciers and ice sheets,
and increasing level of atmospheric gases have
sparked many political debates in recent years.
However, in spite of the politics, the scientific data
are irrefutable. Most of these changes are believed
to be the result of anthropogenic industrialization,
pollution and habitat destruction.  Ecologists and
conservational biologists recognize that many
species are confined to specific ecological niches
and environments.  Minor changes in climate, such
as even slight increases in global temperatures,
may disrupt natural community composition and
food availability that could lead to major ecological
upsets.  By affecting plant growth and development,
global climate changes also could alter farming
practices and forestry production.

“Plant Growth and Climate Change” is a compilation
of nine papers/chapters written by researchers
working primarily in the United Kingdom, Portugal,
Australia, Germany, Switzerland, and the United
States.   The major theme of this book addresses
climate change and several key factors that affect
plant performance: carbon dioxide, temperature,
water supply, nitrogen, light, and soil.  Plant
physiological and ecological limitations are
addressed in both controlled environments and
longitudinal field studies.  Each paper contains a
long list of references for readers who wish to
acquire additional information more thoroughly.
Each paper also has appropriate, high quality tables
and figures; six color plates are inserted into
Chapter 3.

Chapter 1 provides a synopsis of processes that
affect climate changes.  Past, recent, and projected
future changes pertaining to temperature,
precipitation, solar radiation, and greenhouse gas
emissions on global and regional scales are
discussed and scenarios from the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
(IPCC) are outlined.  Final sections of this chapter,
for example, addresses how rising temperatures,
increased precipitation, and the influx of freshwater
from ice-melt could decrease the strength of
thermohaline circulation by 50% during the next

100 years in the North Atlantic.  This situation would
likely enhance the maritime climatic influence in
Europe and cause a warming influence throughout
the entire continent, dramatically affecting plant
species composition and potentially collapse some
ecosystems.  Concluding remarks in this chapter
address that changing agricultural practices could
help reduce greenhouse gas emissions that may
mitigate warming trends.  Shifting to rice varieties
that can grow in drier conditions, for example, may
help rectify methane gas emissions (a major
greenhouse component) and replacing inorganic
nitrogen fertilizers with organic manures may reduce
nitrous oxides emissions.

Chapter 2, written by Ziska, L, H. and Bunce, J, A.
reviews plant responses to increased atmospheric


, one of the four abiotic factors that pertain to

plant growth along with light, nutrients, and water.
Gene expression for photosynthetic regulation,
cellular processes of C3, C4 and CAM photosynthetic
pathways, whole plant responses to increased CO


accumulation, and managed and unmanaged plant
communities and ecosystems regarding the impact
of CO


 concentrations are addressed.  These authors

emphasized, however, that understanding changes
in CO


 conditions are difficult and that future

experiments need to address other abiotic variables
including tropospheric ozone, nitrogen deposition,
and other land use patterns when looking at
changes in CO



How temperature influences plant metabolism (net
photosynthesis, dark cell respiration, and plant
development) over defined timescales is the major
theme of Chapter 3 written by Körner, C.   This study
explored field and controlled environmental
procedures.  Körner discusses how plant tissues
vary in their response to series of temperatures that
range over a few hours to several days up to a full
growing season.  He noted that temperature has a
minor influence on photosynthesis compared to
photoperiodism although temperature does exert a
significant influence on the induction of flower buds,
general growth activity, and respiration on plant
populations.  Körner added that it is difficult to bridge
the gap for a single species physiology growing
along a thermal gradient compared to ecosystems.
Interactions of other variables including altitudinal
gradients, soil heat flux, plant stature, and water
supply complicate the influence of temperature in
natural settings.

Chapter 4, written by Menzel, A. and Sparks, T.,
reviews how plant phenology has been impacted by
warming temperatures and seasonality.  First leafing,
flowering, and fruiting vary among flowering plant
species.  Many deciduous plants ranging from
cultivated (dates, grapes, lilacs, and daffodils) cereal

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

crops (winter wheat) and native plants (oaks and
ash) are discussed.  This chapter begins as to how
flowers impact traditional days set aside for religious
and folklore festivals and tourism throughout Europe
and Asia:  snowdrop flowering on Candlemas
(February 2


), daffodil flowering for St. David’s Day

(March 1


), and peach flowering in Shanghai.

Throughout the chapter they highlight how phenology
change could cause some negative and positive
consequences: reduced tourism; longer period of
suffering from “hay fever” allergies; changes in
native species, communities, and ecosystems;
and improved agricultural and forestry yields as
long as moisture is adequate.

Unpredictable rainfall patterns and fluctuations in
soil moisture availability commonly reduces water
uptake in plants.  In Chapter 5 Davies, W. J. examines
how plant cells cope with water scarcity.  Some of
the most sensitive limitations on plant growth are
emphasized including the number, size, and
transpiration effectiveness of stomata in leaves,
water movement through roots, and chemical
signaling responses that plant stress hormones
generate.  Understanding these plant physiological
processes and mechanisms are important in
optimizing crop production and on the composition
and function of natural plant communities.

In Chapter 6, Pereira and colleagues further address
worldwide water shortages and its impacts on plant
communities and crop production.  Currently 7% of
the world’s population lives in areas where water is
scarce but that value may rise to 67% by 2050.
These authors review how longer timescales of
water scarcity and severe drought may cause the
mortality of woody perennial plants and alter plant
community boundaries.  They note that these
conditions are already occurring in semi-arid
environments throughout the Mediterranean: lauroid
sclerophyllous trees like Arbutus and Myrtus are on
the decline and tall trees such as Quercus ilex are
being replaced by shrubs and grasses due to an
increase in wildfires, deterioration of soil structure,
and xylem cavitation.

Field experiments, emphasizing how plant
community compositions are likely to be affected by
climate change, particularly temperature,
precipitation and nutrient cycling, are further explored
by Morecroft and Paterson in Chapter 7.  They
assess information that has been published in
temperate, boreal, and polar zones and state that
plant communities are experiencing boundary shifts
in high-latitude and high-altitude areas: 1) treelines
and alpine European plants are shifting to higher
altitudes, 2) shrubs are expanding into areas
designated as tundra, and 3) Antarctic plants are
colonizing formerly bare ground areas.  Low-

temperature alpine plants are particularly vulnerable
to rising temperatures and are likely to disappear if
they already occupy the highest regions of
mountains.   Morecrot and Paterson concluded that
better monitoring and further research is required
to accurately predict future consequences of
vegetation composition; few studies have monitored
vegetation composition at high latitudes for long
periods of time.

The final two chapters describe credible models
that can be used to make predictions about global
climatic patterns on temporal and spatial scales.  In
Chapter 8, Wang and colleagues demonstrated
that increases in atmospheric CO


 need to be

correlated to soil decomposition, mineral cycling
and nutrient availability in modeling plant productivity
by terrestrial ecosystems over decades.  Emphasis
was placed on nitrogen because this element is
commonly a limiting factor with regards to plant
growth and soil organic matter.   Chapter 9
addresses how climate change influences plant
productivity and the carbon cycle.  Grace and Zhang
report how increasing levels of CO


 and rising

temperatures may generate negative effects on
photosynthesis and plant respiration.   For example,
they noted that photosynthesis becomes saturated
at high CO


 levels irrespective of light levels.

Chloroplastic CO


 plateaus when the partial

pressure reaches 500 mbar and recent
experiments show that trees did not increase in
growth when CO


 was doubled in northern forests.

In tropical biomes, they added that photosynthesis
will likely drop due to more intense water stress and

The field of climate change is a dynamic field.  This
book provides a basis of understanding plant growth
that is affected by abiotic and biotic variables.
Throughout the book there are overlaps in content
but specialists will appreciate the reappearance of
major themes addressed by different experts for
greater understanding.  Data contained in this book
also will remain pertinent for years to follow.  This
book is an excellent reference for professionals,
researchers, and advanced students that are
interested in plant science, soil science, and ecology.

-Nina L. Baghai-Riding, Division of Biological and
Physical Sciences, Delta State University.

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Plant Solute Transport. Yeo, Anthony R. and Timothy
J. Flowers (eds.). 2007. ISBN 978-14051-3995-3.
424 pp. Blackwell Publishing, Oxford. $ 199.99.

Sixteen years ago, Flowers and Yeo (1992) authored
a very useful book on “Solute Transport in Plants”.
The current volume has a marginally modified title
but still covers the same vast range of topics - solute
transport over distances ranging from nanometers
to tens of meters, from the molecular mechanisms
of ion channels to phloem flux regulation and whole
plant level responses to salt stress. There also are
chapters on the basic physics of water and solute
movement, as well as on methodologies for the
determination of solute contents and transport (for
a complete list of contents, go the publishers website
at and perform
a search for ‘Plant Solute Transport’). The size of the
book has more than doubled, and the progress
which was particularly rapid in the molecular field is
reflected by the fact that all chapters on molecular
aspects as well as on xylem and phloem transport
are now contributed by specialists in those areas.
Flowers and Yeo have retained responsibility for the
chapters dealing with general physicochemical
properties of solutes and with ecophysiological
matters. Given this division of labor, it surprised me
how homogenous this well written multi-author
work appears - in almost all of its parts.

As stated in their preface, the editors aimed to close
the gap between the large general textbooks and
the highly detailed monographs or reviews for the
specialist working in the field. The targeted audience
includes research workers and graduate students,
but it was attempted to design the chapters in a way
that makes them useful for third year students. This
is a potentially problematic approach, but it worked
amazingly well (only the chapter on the “Regulation
of Ion Transporters”, while certainly being an
excellent review, seems a bit too demanding for
third year students as I know them). Most chapters
include definitions of basic terminology, often with
a critical appraisal of the concepts behind those key
terms in the context of recent findings. Additional
figures might have helped in some cases (there are
not more than 48 illustrations on 400+ pages), but
in general, the book is a highly accessible source
of more-than-textbook information for upper level
students. However, the chapters are “snapshots
that provide guidance to students and researchers
alike” (in the words of M. Gilliham, author of the
chapter on “Membrane Structure and the Study of
Solute Transport Across Plant Membranes”), and
this is achieved through the adequate and
stimulating discussion of current research foci. In
the chapters dealing with molecular mechanisms,
roughly 50% of the references cited have been

published after 2001, that is, within 5 years before
the publication of the book. One hopes that the
timeliness expressed in this figure will be
maintained by regularly appearing new editions.

A particularly strong point of the book is the connection
of molecular and ecophysiological aspects, even
though, or rather: because it remains completely
unclear in many cases how molecular mechanisms
are integrated to make physiological sense and
mediate ecologically meaningful responses. It will
be enlightening to many students (and maybe also
to some researchers) to learn why even a much
advanced knowledge of cellular ion transport
mechanisms does not imply an understanding, for
example, of what makes a plant a halophyte. In his
chapters on water-limited conditions and salinity, A.
Yeo stresses this problem of a reductionistic lack
of integrative thinking to a point where it almost
hurts, when he criticizes his (and my) trade for
continuing to “make the seemingly obligatory nod in
the direction of ‘crop improvement’ to justify its
existence”, although the relevance for agriculture of
much of our work is unclear at best. This critique is
discomforting but constructive, as it is based on
case studies (such as e.g. phosphorus acquisition)
which explain why the causal links between the
activity of a membrane transport protein and whole
plant behavior cannot be considered to be arranged
in straight lines. Such discussion is not only
stimulating for the researcher, but also can be very
useful for educators intending to teach plant science
following a ‘critical thinking’ approach.

What I miss most in this book is an introduction to
growth and its analysis, both classical and
kinematic. This would appear especially welcome
because solute uptake and accumulation as a
driving force for growth is repeatedly discussed,
and specialist terms such as ‘RGR’ or concepts
such as the simplified Lockhart equation are used
without further explanation. There are a few errors
which certainly will be corrected in a future edition;
for example, the two versions of the Goldmann
equation (3.22 and 5.7) cannot possibly both be
correct. But those are minor inaccuracies; a teacher
using the book in an advanced class easily will be
capable of making up for them. The only serious
shortcomings in this otherwise excellent book are
found in the chapter on xylem transport (‘Transport
from Root to Shoot’) which contains factual errors
that will confuse student readers. A few examples:
it is not generally “typical” of vessel elements that
they are strengthened by ring- or spiral-shaped wall
thickenings (p. 215). Figure 9.2 C shows embolized
vessels next to apparently functional tracheids and
therefore seems an odd choice to demonstrate
what happens around embolized tracheids
(compare the original source of the micrograph,

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Anatomy of Flowering Plants:  An Introduction to
Structure and Development, 3


 ed.  Rudall, Paula.

2007.  ISBN 978-0-521-69245-8.  Paper. US $39.99.
145 pp.  Cambridge University Press, 32 Avenue of
the Americas, New York, NY 10013.

Dr. Rudall’s textbook has been thoroughly revised
in this third edition, including changing the order of
some topics, re-writing and expanding some
sections, incorporating results of molecular studies
in understanding the phylogenetic relationship of
monocotyledon and dicotyledon classes, and
expanding other areas where new research
provides additional understanding.  Changes in the
text formatting include additional section labels to
guide reader comprehension and restructuring the
topic order.  Dr. Rudall has expanded the discussion
of ground tissue, the discussion of the arrangement
of the vascular system in a stem, pollen and pistil
structure, for example.  New sections on stomata
and transfer cells are included.  She is careful to
include information that answers the “so what?”
question – that is, why is this particular structure
important?  In what group of plants do we find this
structure?  How does this structure influence

Cells, organs, and tissues are clearly defined and
described in the introductory chapter.  Specific
chapters on stem, root, leaf, flower, and seed and
fruit anatomy then follow.  Each chapter builds upon
the knowledge of the first chapter, but the
subsequent chapters can be read and understood
independent from one another.  Thus, the reader
can selectively read the section of interest without
experiencing frustration of assumed knowledge
from earlier in the book.

According to the preface, the book is focused toward
serving as a plant anatomy textbook as well as a
resource for professionals in the field.  However, the
reader is expected to have fundamental knowledge
of plant anatomy, although the third edition assumes
less prior knowledge than did the 2



Technical terms are used without description
(although the glossary is mostly complete).  Many
concepts are not diagrammed or are discussed in
a cursory manner.  Some diagrams were removed
from the second edition, while other illustrations
were added.  I found the diagram on the vessel
element ontogeny in the 2


 edition to be clear and

precise and regret that it wasn’t retained for the third
edition.  However, an excellent micrograph replaced
an adequate diagram on root-microorganismal
interactions. The author is inconsistent on the use
of common and scientific names, and occasionally
the common name is used several pages prior to
the reference to the scientific epitaph.  These minor
features may frustrate a beginning botanist.

McCully et al., 2000). “The cohesion-tension theory
implies that the tension gradient between the root
and leaf xylem is the only driving force for hydraulic
water lift in the xylem” (p. 222; emphasis in the
original) - how could it possibly do that? The author
appears to assume that bordered pits generally
have a torus-margo structure (p. 219 and Figure
9.3), which may explain why recent insights into the
function and evolution of xylem conduits (e.g.
Pittermann et al., 2005; Rabaey et al., 2006) are

In conclusion, this book is an excellent source of
information for plant scientists on all steps of the
academic ladder from upper level undergraduates
upwards, which provides a multitude of access
points to more specific literature. What probably will
restrict its popularity among students is its price
(about US $ 200), which could have been lower
without the eight color plates which do not really
seem indispensible; black-and-white figures would
provide the same information. Unfortunately, the
publisher’s website does not indicate any plans to
produce a paperback version at this stage.

- Winfried S. Peters, Department of Biology, Indiana/
Purdue University Fort Wayne, Fort Wayne IN 46805-

Famous Movies Starring Plants

Little Shop of Horrors (1960, 1986)

Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956, 1978)

Day of the Triffids (1962)

Killer Tomatoes (1978)

Return of the Killer Tomatoes! (1988)

Killer Tomatoes Strike Back (1990)

Killer Tomatoes Eat France! (1991)

Adaptation (2002)


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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Anatomy of Flowering Plants is an invaluable
reference for finding those precise, unambiguous
terms used to describe key features in plant structure.
The revision results in an edition that incorporates
current understandings with historical knowledge,
has good “flow” in the text, and supports reader
comprehension. The contained information is
fascinating, the images are superb and
appropriately selected, and the reference to original
literature is most helpful.  I finished the book wishing
it were twice as long.  Most of the topics could
warrant expanded discussion…..but that would yield
a less succinct text.  The terseness of Dr. Rudall’s
writing, indeed, is one of the strengths of this book.
The textbook is pithy.  As a result, the book would be
of limited usefulness for beginning botany students
or individuals who have not studied the
fundamentals of plant structure.  For the upper
division or graduate student in botany or a
professional in the field, this is an excellent review
and shelf reference.

-Joyce Phillips Hardy, Dept. of Physical and Life
Science, Chadron State College

The Mountain Flora of Java. van Steenis, C.G.G.J.
(Author), Hamzah, A. & Toha, M. (Illustrations). 2007
(2. edition). Brill, Leiden & Boston, xii + 240pp., with
57 full color plates (hardcover). US$ 195.00; ISBN-
13: 978-9004153479; ISBN-10: 9004153470.

The Indonesian islands have long drawn the
attention of Botanists, and their flora has been
comparatively well studied. The location of Java in-
between Asia and Australia gives its flora high
phytogeographical importance, and makes it a top
priority for global conservation. Van Steenis realized
this already in the 1930s, decades before the
Convention of Biological Diversity. His original idea
was to publish a well-illustrated pocketsize field
guide to Java’s breathtaking mountain flora. It was
however not until 1972, that the “Mountain Flora of

Java” was published in folio-format, really doing
justice to the incredible life-size drawings by Amir
Hamzah and Moehamad Toha. The initial print was
an immediate success, and sold out almost
instantly. The Mountain Flora of Java has remained
the only comprehensive flora of the region ever
since, and a new edition was eagerly awaited by
botanists and nature lovers alike.

The second edition of the “Mountain Flora of Java
is a facsimile reproduction of the first edition, only
amended with as short preface by Pieter Baas. The
introductory chapters provide an overview on the
botanical exploration of the Indonesian archipelago,
and Java in particular, followed by carefully drafted
descriptions of geology and climate of the islands,
the altitudinal zonation of its vegetation, and mass
elevation effects and phenology of important genera.
In addition, van Steenis gives a short overview on
regeneration cycles in Javanese mountain
ecosystems, and outlines the potential influence of
invasive species.

The majority of the introductory text focuses however
on the various plant communities that a casual
hiker might encounter on a trip to Java’s mountains.
Steenis adds some information on indigenous
plant names and uses in these chapters, and
illustrates his vegetation transect with 71 black and
white photographs. These are however mostly taken
in the 1930s, and the print quality does not live up
to the quality of the remainder of the book. The
introductory text concludes with remarks on
distribution and biogeography of the Javanese flora,
and bibliographic references to every single
mountain on Java. This, from the perspective of the


 century, is definitely the most outdated part of

the flora, because scientific knowledge has
increased tremendously since the original
publication, and a large amount of new literature is
available. Nevertheless, van Steenis descriptions
are still a classic treatment of plant ecology in Java
and there is still no other flora available that would
combine this information in one volume.

The most convincing reason to buy the reprint of
Mountain Flora of Java” lies in the 57 wonderful
plant plates. The quality of these life-size illustrations
is magnificent, and any botanist can only appreciate
the detail of these botanical drawings. Altogether
459 species are illustrated in life size with their most
important details. The illustration of each species
is accompanied by its scientific name, reference for
the original description, a short botanical
description, as well as data on the distribution and
ecology of the species, and additional remarks. It
does make sense that the text is an exact
reproduction of the original edition, but the flora
would have benefited from an annex that would

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Wild Orchids of the Northeast: New England, New
York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.  
Brown, Paul
Martin.  2007.   ISBN-13:978-0-8130-3034-0 (alk.
paper, US $29.95).  368 pp.  University Press of
Florida.  Gainesville, Florida, USA.

In his Wild Orchids of the Northeast, Paul Brown
accomplishes exactly what he set out to do, and
then some.  His vision encompassed a handy-
sized field guide that included sufficient illustrative
material to help an amateur identify the orchids
found in nine northeastern states.

Brown starts the book with a few brief introductory
sections on the Northeastern US and the previous
orchid field guides for this region.  A short primer on
the use of dichotomous keys is followed by a key to
the nearly two dozen orchid genera covered in this
guide. His overview of orchid flower architecture

bring the taxonomy of the species illustrated to a
modern level.

Van Steenis Mountain Flora of Java is a fascinating
botanical classic that as such has lost nothing of its
original importance and appeal, despite the
mentioned increase in scientific knowledge. It is
still the only comprehensive illustrated flora on the
mountains of Java, and BRILL is to b congratulated
to making this reprint possible. Moreover, a version
in Indonesian is now available too, which makes
the wealth of information finally available in a local

With the excellent print quality of the unsurpassed
color plates, the book remains a wonderful example
of classic botanical work, and is an inspiration to
anybody interested in Botany. The flora comes with
an expectedly high price tag, but it is no doubt worth
the investment.

-Rainer Bussmann, Ph.D.
Head and William L. Brown Curator of Economic
Wm. L. Brown Center
Missouri Botanical Garden
P.O. Box 299
St. Louis, MO 63166-0299
Office phone: +1-314-577-9503
Fax: +1-314-577-0800

serves well for novices, but his depiction of orchids
as “consumers” of fungi goes against classic
terminology describing the mutualistic relationship
between orchids and the mycorrhizae that associate
with them.  I would have preferred to see that
mutualism explained more precisely to the reader
including the idea that the fungi benefit from the
association as well.

Nearly 200 pages of the book, dedicated to the
descriptions of the species, are focused on
identification and include some additional
information about geographic range, rarity,
taxonomic authority and flowering phenology.  The
numerous photographs accompanying the species
descriptions are clear, crisp and informative, as are
the line drawings by Stan Folsom.  Range maps
indicate both local populations and areas of
widespread distribution.  Some species carry
additional information about their protected status
in certain areas.  In all, the identification section is
so well-presented that most orchid novices should
have no problem getting a name for whichever
orchid they are viewing.

The references and resources presented are
extensive.  Brown provides a checklist down to
forma and including hybrids, and then breaks it
down by state.  Regional statistics on orchids are
given and, for those interested in the conservation
status of a species, lists (by state) of rare, threatened
and endangered species precede a few pages on
taxonomic challenges and confusions.

In the last major section, Brown gives hints on
orchid hunting for each state – where and when to
look, and what you might be seeking at that time.
Most of the hunting grounds are public lands or
private reserves; some are roadside ditches.  Even
though the guide covers a fairly large geographic
area, these welcome suggestions seem to stem
from intimate explorations of the region and make
it seem like the reader is truly relying on a local

Not being an orchid expert, I was very pleased to see
an appendix that showed the flowering phenology
of the included species and, even more so, that a
well-written glossary was included.  Through his list
of the sighting possibilities, his choice of
photographs, and his hints on where to explore,
Brown entices one to pack up the camera, the
maps, and his field guide and head out on an
orchid-seeking adventure.

- Linda MK Johnson, Department of Biology,
Chemistry and Environmental Science, Christopher
Newport University, Newport News, VA, 23606,

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

Cycads of Vietnam.  Osborne, Roy, Ken D. Hill, Hiêp
T. Nguyen, an16 pp.  Roy Osborne, Brisbane,
Australia and Wynand van Eeden, Cape Town,
South Africa.

Ecology of Weeds and Invasive Plants:
Relationship to Agriculture and Natural Resources
Management, 3


 ed.  Radosevich, Steven R., Jodie

S. Holt and Claudio M. Ghersa.  ISBN 0-471-76779-
4  (Cloth US$75.00) 454 pp.  John Wiley and Sons,
Inc. 111 River St., Hoboken, New Jersey 07030-

Evolutionary Genomics and Proteomics.  Pagel,
Mark, Andrew Pomiankowski (eds.)  2007.  ISBN
978-0-87893-654-0  (Paper US$54.95) 295 pp.
Sinauer Associates, Inc. P.O. Box 407, Sunderland,
MA 01375-0407.

Handbook of Plant Science, Volume 1. (Functional
Plant Anatomy, Plant Tissues and Cells, Plant Cell
Biology, Plant Growth and Development, Molecular
Genetics and Biotechnology) Handbook of Plant
Science, Volume 2
 (Evolution, Plant Primary
Metabolism, Plant Secondary Metabolism,
Photosynthesis, Plants and their Environment,
Plants and Other Organisms) Roberts, Keith (ed.).
2007.  ISBN 978-0-470-05723-0 (Cloth US$590)
1599 pp.  John Wiley & Sons Ltd., The Atrium,
Southern Gate, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19
8SQ, England.

Herbal Medicines, 3


 ed.  Barnes, Joanne, Linda A.

Anderson and J. David Phillipson.  2007.  ISBN 978-
0-85369-623-0 (Cloth US$150.00) 710 pp.
Pharmaceutical Press, 100 South Atkinson Road,
Suite 200, Grayslake, IL 60030-7820.

Mountain Wildflowers of the Southern Rockies:
Revealing Their Natural History.
  Dodson, Caroly,
and William W. Dunmire.  2007.  ISBN 978-0-8263-
4244-7 (Paper US$19.85) 192 pp.  University of
New Mexico Press, MSC04 2820 1 University of
New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001.

Plant Desiccation Tolerance.  Jenks, Matthew A.
and Andrew J. Wood (eds.).  2007.  ISBN 0813812631
(Cloth US$200.00) 311 pp.  Blackwell Publishing
Professional, 2121 State Avenue, Ames, IA, 50014.

Plant Tropisms.  Gilroy, Sinom and Patrick H.
Masson (eds.).  2007.  ISBN 0813823234  (Cloth
US$20.00)  207 pp.   Blackwell Publishing
Professional, 2121 State Avenue, Ames, IA, 50014.

Weeds in South Texas and Northern Mexico: A
Guide to Identification
.  Everitt, James H., Robert I.
Lonard, and Christopher R. Little. 2007.  ISBN 0-
89672-614-2 (paper US$19.95)  222 pp.  Texas
Tech University Press, 2903 4


 Street Box 41037.

Lubbock, TX 79409-1037.

Books Received

If you would like to review a book or books for PSB,
contact the Editor, stating the book of interest and
the date by which it would be reviewed (15 January,
15 April, 15 July or 15 October).  E-mail

, call, or write as soon as you notice

the book of interest in this list because they go
quickly!   - Editor

BSA Contact Information

All inquiries for the BSA Business Office should be
directed to:

    Executive Director:  William Dahl    and / or
    Administrative Coordinator:  Wanda Lovan

    BSA Business Office
    Botanical Society of America, Inc.
   4475 Castleman Avenue
    P.O. Box 299
    St. Louis, MO  63166-0299

    Voice: 314-577-9566
    FAX: 314-577-9515

    Office hours are 7:30 am to 4:30 pm Central Time

President:  Pamela  Soltis

All inquiries about the Botany 2004 meeting (and any other
future meeting) should be directed to:

    Mrs. Johanne Stogran, Meetings Manager.


    Voice:  614-292-3519  Fax: 614-247-6444

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Plant Science Bulletin 54(1) 2008

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