Plant Science Bulletin archive

Issue: 2013 v59 No 4 WinterActions

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Winter 2013 Volume 59 Number 4


In This Issue..............

Learned Societies - Past, Present & 

Future.....p. 150

BSA announces new resources 

for teaching.....p. 162

Plant scientists support World 

Food Day.....p. 171

BSA Legacy Society Celebrates!

Dennis Stevenson, Francis Hueber, Anitra Thorhaug, Karl Niklas,  

Paul Biebel, John Mikel, Judy Skog

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From the Editor

                                                                                  Winter 2013 Volume 59 Number 4



Editorial Committee  

Volume 59



Elizabeth Schussler  


Department of Ecology  & 

Evolutionary Biology 

University of Tennessee 

Knoxville, TN 37996-1610

Christopher Martine 


Department of Biology 

Bucknell University 

Lewisburg, PA 17837

Lindsey K. Tuominen 


Warnell School of Forestry & 

Natural Resources 

The University of Georgia 

Athens, GA  30605

Daniel K. Gladish 


Department of Botany &  

The Conservatory 

Miami University  

Hamilton, OH  45011

Carolyn M. Wetzel 

Biology Department 

Division of Health and  

Natural Sciences 

Holyoke Community College 

303 Homestead Ave 

Holyoke, MA 01040

In a recent commentary in Nature (503: 191–

192), Georgina Mace noted that the shift to 

digital publishing is beginning to have a nega-

tive effect on scientific societies, such as the 

100-year-old British Ecological Society, of 

which she is Past-President. In great measure, 

this is because most professional societies de-

rive a significant portion of their budget from 

subscriptions to their scientific journal and 

membership is declining. The Botanical Society 

of America has been proactive in anticipating 

these changes and increasing the value of mem-

bership for several years, and as a result we are 

in a much better situation than many of our 

sister scientific societies. It is timely, then, that 

we begin this issue with the address presented 

by President Pam Diggle at our annual meet-

ing last summer. Pam presents a brief history of 

the role of learned societies, their journals, and 

their meetings and brings this forward to the 

role of the BSA, our professional journals, and 

our annual meeting today. I am in full agree-

ment with Pam’s prediction for the future, and I 

think you will be too. Read the article on p. 150.

Then, start planning for our next annual meet-

ing, Botany 2014 in Boise, Idaho. If you’re un-

decided at the moment, I understand that one 

of the field trips may be to the Clarkia fossil 

beds—check out Plants are Cool, Too! Episode 

2: “Fossilized Forests” (


See you there!

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Table of Contents

Society News

Learned Societies - Past, Present and Future?  Address of the BSA President at Botany 2013 ...150

The BSA Legacy Society Celebrated the Northeast .......................................................158

Is the BSA Legacy Society for you ................................................................................159

BSA Science Education News and Notes ....................................................


Editor’s Choice Review ...............................................................................



In memoriam - Rudolf Mathias Schuster, 1921–2012 ....................................................165

Personalia – Claire Hemingway ....................................................................................169

Getty Research Institute Announces Gift of Rare Botanical Books ...............................170

Missouri Botanical Garden Announces Grant Award—Project Aims to Improve  

     Access to Digital Texts through Online Gaming .......................................................170

Plant Health Scientists Reiterate Support of Biotechnology on World Food Day .........171

The Second International Conference on Duckweed Research and Applications..........171

BSA Seeks Editor for Plant Science Bulletin – Deadline for Nominations Extended ...173


Use of Pollen to Identify Cattail (Typha spp.,Typhaceae) Taxa in Indiana ....................174

Book Reviews

Developmental and Structural ........................................................................................178 

Economic Botany ...........................................................................................................179

Mycology ........................................................................................................................180

Systematics  ....................................................................................................................181

Books Received ...........................................................................................


The Boise Center 
July 26-30, 2014

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Society News

Learned Societies - Past, 

Present and Future?

Address of the BSA President 

from Botany 2013

Pam Diggle 

University of Colorado

(The video of this talk is available at the BSA’s 

Botany conference channel at


Why do we belong to scientific societies?  Why 

do we come to scientific meetings?  As I prepared to 

take on the role of President of BSA, I realized that 

the answers to these questions were so important 

that I wanted to devote my presidential address to the 

answers.  In this digital age, with so many different 

options for sharing information and interacting 

with colleagues, why do we hold meetings?  Why 

did 1100 of us travel to New Orleans?  We could 

have all put our talks on YouTube and tweeted about 

our favorites without ever leaving our offices.  What 

is the role of meetings and of scientific societies 

generally, and the Botanical Society of America 

specifically, in modern science?

To explore this question of why we belong to 

societies and why we come to meetings, I began by 

asking a more general question: What is a scientific 

society, or more generally, a learned society? 


Reading through the literature on learned societies, 

I found a variety of definitions.  Learned societies 


•  Knowledge networks…created to provide 

a forum for learned individuals to share and 

discuss knowledge and discoveries  (McCarthy 

and Rands, 2013) 
•  Primarily concerned with the pursuit of 

knowledge and its dissemination to a wider 

audience  (Hopkins, 2011)
•  Organizations that promote interaction 

between scholars (Encyclopedia of Higher 

•  Publish the proceedings of their meetings, 

journals, reports and outstanding investigations 

by their members. They also award prizes, 

encourage or subsidize research and maintain 

libraries (Columbia Encyclopedia)
•  A means through which interested parties are 

able to access the combined expertise of many 

universities and individuals in one space or for 

experts to gather to have impact by collectively 

expressing opinion on a particular topic 
•  Voluntary organizations of individuals 

dedicated to scholarship and research, often 

focused on a particular subject or method.
Common themes of these definitions include the 

focus on the intake, exchange and dissemination of 

knowledge, and interaction among individuals and 

professional recognition.  This is a good description 

of the BSA as a modern Society, but how have 

learned societies come to embody these properties; 

how did these networks of knowledge and personal 

interactions come about?  What is the history of 

learned societies?

Most historiographies trace the origins of 

modern learned societies back to the Accademia 

Secretorum Naturae, founded in Naples in 1560 

by Giambattista della Porta.  The society met in 

della Porta’s home and membership was open to all 

who could “present a new fact in natural science.”  

This was a group who cared about knowledge and 

came together to discuss and share knowledge 

widely.  The society’s activities became the subject 

of an ecclesiastical investigation and della Porta 

was ordered by Pope Paul V to close his Academy 

in 1578 under suspicion of sorcery.  

Giambattista della Porta, founder of the  

Accademia Secretorum Naturae in 1560.  

Membership was open to all who could  

present “a new fact in natural science.”

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

Some 50 years later, Federico Cesi, who 

was passionately interested in natural history, 

particularly botany, founded another academy, the 

Accademia dei Lincei, in Rome.  The academy was 

named after the lynx, an animal whose sharp vision 

symbolizes the observational prowess that science 

requires.  The society’s purpose was the “acquisition 

of wisdom and knowledge of things… and the 

announcement of these to men by both word and 

voice.”  They undertook individual projects and 

investigations, kept members informed about what 

happened in meetings, and established a library. 

Perhaps most importantly, they established an ideal 

to be emulated, that of a community of scholars 

in constant free and open contact. Galileo Galilei 

was a prominent member. The society did not 

long survive the death of its founder Cesi, but was 

resurrected in modern times, and you can read 

more about it at

The  Accademia dei Lincei inspired the 

establishment of multiple learned societies across 

Europe.  Groups of people everywhere gathered to 

discuss science and new knowledge.  In England, 

1660 saw the establishment of a society that 

persists to this day: the Royal Society of London 

for Improving of Natural Knowledge.  The society 

was founded by a small number of men (alas, this 

history is mostly about men), including physicians 

and natural philosophers, who began meeting in 

a variety of localities around London and Oxford.  

The society was granted a royal charter by King 

Charles II, but the government did not support the 

Society.  In fact, to this day most learned societies 

are not supported by any governmental entity; 

they are volunteer organizations and sustained 

by members.  The members of the nascent Royal 

Society met weekly to discuss science and they 

even demonstrated new scientific devices and ran 

experiments at these meetings.  They read their own 

papers, which described new discoveries, to each 

other and presented papers that they received from 

scientists on the continent.  The Society’s motto, 

Nullius in verba, is Latin for “Take nobody’s word 

for it” and signifies the Fellows’ determination to 

establish facts via experiments.  This early genesis 

of the Royal Society occurred within the context of 

the Enlightenment.  The members understood that 

they could create new knowledge, that they could 

discover new things about the natural world.    

The scientific journal originated with the scientific 

societies of the seventeenth century.  Journals as we 

know them today were created by these societies as 

a means of rapid communication among members, 

to make their collective findings generally available 

to other interested groups, and to provide a venue 

to inform members about activities and findings 

of other societies.  Journals also became important 

repositories of scientific information, providing 

a dependable and permanent record.  The close 

relationship between societies and journals has 

been critical to the stability of journals over the 

long run. Societies are sustained by groups of 

people that care very deeply about science, and for 

that reason, they are committee to the journals that 

communicate their science.  

In the middle of the seventeenth century, 

however, it was not at all obvious that journals 

would become the appropriate place for scientific 

The emblem of the Accademia dei Lincei, founded in 

1603, by Federico Cesi. The academy was named af-

ter the lynx, an animal whose sharp vision symbol-

izes the observational prowess that science requires.

The first issue of the Philosophical Transactions of 

the Royal Society of London. Journals were created 

by societies to share information with members and 

to make their collective findings generally available 

to other interested groups. Journals became impor-

tant permanent repositories of information.

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

publication.  At that time, scholars wrote books 

and treatises—big fat tomes of information 

that were published and circulated among the 

learned.  Publishing books was the accepted 

means to establish a reputation as a scholar and 

for communication of knowledge. There was no 

precedent for the publication of credible knowledge 

in periodical form.  In fact, “periodical” and 

“journal” did not exist as nouns to describe a type 

of publication!  A modern scholar who studied the 

practice of publication in the seventeenth century 

(Johns, 2000) raised the question: in this period, 

why should anyone interested in producing secure 

knowledge ever think to do so by means of transient 

publication such as this?  Most of what was printed 

in a journal-type format was intended as ephemera. 

They included broadsheets that carried gossip and 

news, and these publications weren’t thought of as a 

means of communicating dependable information.  

Establishment of the scientific journal in its 

modern form is the result of a synergy between two 

needs. On the one hand, the members of the Royal 

Society (and other societies) were very much in 

need of rapid communication with one another and 

exchange of information internationally.  On the 

other hand, the printers really needed a dependable 

income.  The printing field was rife with plagiarism 

and there was no copyright.  Printers would go to 

all of the trouble and expense of creating scholarly 

books and the minute they were for sale, another 

printer would typeset them, print them, and sell 

them in competition with the original printer. 

The pace at which journals were published meant 

that there was always fresh material to print. This 

mutual need of societies and printers for regular 

publication created the scientific journal as we 

know it today.  

By the mid 1700s, there were many different 

learned societies across England and Europe, and 

there were many journals.  Mail was dependable, 

and distribution of journals to members within 

societies and exchange of journals among societies 

kept members informed about new developments 

in science.  The system of exchange of information 

was so well established that you could sit in your 

armchair in front of the fire, read your journals, 

learn about the exploration going on all over the 

globe about new experiments and discoveries, and 

you could carry on a correspondence with people 

of like mind.  You did not have to go to meetings.  

But that’s not what happened.  

People continued to form both formal and 

informal learned societies and to meet to advance 

science.  I’ll give two examples of informal societies 

that had a significant impact on science.  The first 

is the Lunar Society, a group of men who met in 

the British midlands around Birmingham in 

the late eighteenth century.  It was an informal 

society of prominent men, including industrialists, 

natural philosophers, and intellectuals. They were 

interested in basic science and natural history, 

but they were also businessmen and they had a 

practical focus. Their goals included improving 

manufacturing machinery and building canals 

so that they could distribute their products more 

efficiently.  In some histories, the origin of the 

industrial revolution is traced to these men.  They 

called themselves the Lunar Society (and cheerfully 

referred to themselves as “lunatics”) because they 

met during the full moon; the extra light made the 

journey home safer in the absence of street lighting.  

These people all had day jobs, yet meeting with 

one another was so important that they ventured 

out at night by horseback or carriage and had to 

travel back home by moonlight.  The Lunar Society 

included Matthew Boulton, who, along with James 

Watt, invented the steam engine; Joseph Priestley 

who experimented with electricity and oxygen 

and was also a clergyman; and Erasmus Darwin, a 

Newspaper from 1643. In the seventeenth century 

periodical publications were primarily newspapers 

and broadsides. They were not considered reliable 

and permanent repositories of information. Image 

from The British Library, E.104.(3.) Copyright 

©1999, The British Library Board

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

natural philosopher and a physician (and Charles 

Darwin’s grandfather).  Despite, or perhaps because 

of, their diverse interests and professions, these 

men very much valued each other’s company and 

traveled long distances to meet and discuss science. 

Skipping ahead 100 years to mid-nineteenth 

century, and going back to central London, my 

second example of an informal society is the X 

Club. By this time, the Royal Society and other 

prestigious societies such as the Linnean Society 

of London had been well established for over 200 

years and their meetings and journals functioned as 

dependable sources of information about science. 

Yet, informal clubs and societies continued to form 

in London to facilitate more intimate discussions 

and interactions.  In 1864, a group of nine men, 

calling themselves the X Club, began to gather 

over dinner once a month.  All were members 

of other learned societies, but still felt the need 

to gather together in an informal setting.  The X 

Club began to meet soon after the publication of 

Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species by Means 

of Natural Selection, and in the midst of the debates 

between the clergy and the scientists over Darwin’s 

ideas. The members of the X Club described 

themselves as “united by a devotion to science, pure 

and free, untrammelled by religious dogmas.” In 

addition to discussion of science, a key aim was to 

make the practice of science professional.  At that 

time, the word “scientists” had just been coined and 

there was no such profession as scientist.  The X 

Club was instrumental in creating paid professional 

positions for scientists.  You’ll recognize many of 

the members:  Thomas Huxley, Joseph Hooker, 

Herbert Spencer, John Lubbock, and John Tyndall.

The word “scientist” was coined in the 1840s (the 

date is uncertain) by William Whewell at a meeting 

of the British Association for the Advancement of 

Science. Before then, people who did science were 

referred to as “natural philosophers” or “men of 

science.” The very word we use to describe what we 

are (scientists) was born at scientific meetings, and 

science as a profession owes much to the activities 

of scientific societies such as the X Club. Moreover, 

I would argue, the genesis of science as we know it 

today occurred in the academies and societies that 

originated in the middle of the seventeenth century. 

Modern science did not originate in universities. 

The universities of the time were fairly moribund. 

To learn in a university was to study the classics 

and to master received wisdom. Creation of new 

knowledge was not a goal of university education. 

“A Philosopher giving a Lecture on the Orrery in which a lamp is put in place of the Sun,” a painting 

by Joseph Wright of Derby. This portrays a key idea of the Age of Enlightenment: science grounded 

in empiricism and reason.

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

Modern science originated with the enquiries and 

activities of scientific societies.  The very notion 

of faculty as members of the “academy” and the 

words “academic” and “academician” derive from 

the association of new knowledge with learned 

academies and societies.  

Turning from England to the other side of the 

pond, we were not dozing. In the colonies, even 

before the United States became a country, the thirst 

for knowledge and curiosity about the natural world 

was satisfied by the formation of learned societies. 

As early as 1739, the botanist John Bartram made 

the first proposal to form a general scientific society, 

but it took Benjamin Franklin to accomplish this 

goal. Franklin wrote, “The first drudgery of settling 

new colonies is now pretty well over, and there are 

many in every province in circumstances that set 

them at ease, and afford leisure to cultivate the finer 

arts, and improve the common stock of knowledge.”  

He volunteered his services as secretary and the 

American Philosophical Society was established in 

Philadelphia in 1743. The members were diverse, 

including doctors, lawyers, clergymen, artisans 

and tradesmen and included many founders of 

the republic: George Washington, John Adams, 

Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, Thomas 

Paine, Benjamin Rush, James Madison, and John 

Marshall. Not to be outdone by Philadelphia, John 

Adams wanted a learned society for Boston and 

convinced the Boston legislature to establish the 

American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1780. 

The purpose of the society was “to cultivate every 

art and science which may tend to advance the 

interest, honor, dignity, and happiness of a free, 

independent, and virtuous people.” The American 

Academy, like the American Philosophical Society, 

had a diverse membership including scientists, 

writers, and artists, and many founding fathers 

were members.  

In the early history of the United States, learned 

societies were general societies and members were 

elected; they were fairly exclusive. Only in the mid-

1800s did more focused societies develop with 

a more egalitarian approach and more inclusive 

membership.  In 1848 the American Association 

for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) was 

established to focus more specifically on science 

and was open to all. The constitution states that 

“the objects of the Association are, by periodical 

and migratory meetings, to promote intercourse 

between those who are cultivating science in 

different parts of the United States; to give a 

stronger and more general impulse, and a more 

systematic direction to scientific research in our 

country; and to procure for the labours of scientific 

men, increased facilities and a wider usefulness.” At 

its very inception, the AAAS focused on the critical 

role of meetings as a means of advancing science.  

They also clearly understood the importance of 

holding meetings in different locations to serve 

members from across the country. AAAS took 

the idea of moving the meetings around very 

seriously.  For example, in 1872, Asa Gray of 

Harvard University was president of the AAAS.  

Although Gray lived and worked in Cambridge, 

Massachusetts, the meeting was planned for San 

Francisco, California. The transcontinental railroad 

Asa Gray, botanist and early supporter of Darwin’s 

evolutionary theory was elected president of AAAS 

in 1872. He planned to travel 3,000 from Mas-

sachusetts to California on the newly completed 

transcontinental railroad to attend that year’s 


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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

had only been completed three years earlier, in 1869. 

Yet, Gray and presumably many other members of 

the AAAS, planed to travel 3,000 miles on a newly 

completed rail line to go to a meeting!  In the end, 

the society was unable to negotiate reasonable train 

fares from the east and they split the difference 

and met in Dubuque, Iowa. This is a tale of true 

dedication to scientific meetings.

The Botanical Society of America grew out of 

AAAS. During the 1883 meeting in Minneapolis, 

members formed the Botanical Club as a section of 

the AAAS.  It functioned within the AAAS for about 

10 years, but at their 1892 meeting, Liberty Hyde 

Bailey of Cornell University suggested forming a 

new society of botanists to “unify and subserve the 

botanical interests of the country.” Bailey chaired a 

committee to investigate formation of an American 

Botanical Society and they carefully weighed all 

of the issues. At the next meeting of the Botanical 

Club, Bailey presented the committee report: by a 

vote of 8 to 2 the committee recommended against 

establishment of a separate American Botanical 

Society.  But, one of the two committee members 

who were in favor of forming a separate society 

gave his opinion, and he must have been very 

persuasive because two thirds of the members 

voted to form a society!  The Botanical Society of 

America was established in 1895, with the aim of 

promoting botanical research.  Interestingly, in the 

original charter the society moved away from the 

egalitarian approach of the AAAS, and membership 

was by election and restricted to active researchers. 

This troubled some botanists, and in 1897 members 

of the American Society of Naturalists organized a 

different botanical society: the Society for Plant 

Morphology and Physiology. Fractionation was 

also troubling, and the 1906 meeting in New 

Orleans, Louisiana saw a union of three societies.  

The Botanical Society of America, the Society 

for Plant Morphology and Physiology, and the 

Mycological Society gathered forces and became 

the Botanical Society of America. William Trelease 

and Charles Bessey were the first two presidents of 

the new BSA. L.H. Bailey was elected president in 

1926; they must have eventually forgiven him for 

recommending against formation of the BSA in the 

first place.

At the very first meeting of the BSA in 1906, 

members appointed a publications committee and 

began to discuss the critical need for a journal 

to publish the results of BSA members and to 

disseminate them widely.  Volume 1 of the American 

Journal of Botany was published in January of 1914.  

In 2014 we will celebrate the centennial of the AJB

watch the journal for exciting developments as the 

year unfolds. 

Since its birth in the learned societies of the 

enlightenment, science has changed and grown.  

Science is an enormous engine of our modern 

economy and holds a central place in higher 

education. Importantly, science increasingly bears 

great responsibility to share its knowledge and 

values with the public. As science has grown and 

become more complex, scientific societies have 

also grown and matured and continue to foster 

and support science in multiple ways. The BSA is 

now a thriving and complex organization of 3000 

members that support each other in multiple 

ways. The BSA includes members from around the 

world, from multiple career stages and multiple 

professions within the botanical sciences. The BSA 

is egalitarian; all botanists are welcome as members 

and anyone can present at the annual meetings.  

In this age of horizontally organized academic 

departments, we are a vertically integrated 

society and our journal and meetings provide an 

important opportunity to read broadly and to 

interact with colleagues who work at very different 

scales, from molecules to ecosystems. In addition 

to the American Journal of Botany, the society 

publishes the Plant Science Bulletin for informal 

communication, with information on upcoming 

At an 1892 AAAS/Botanical Club meeting Professor 

L. H. Bailey suggested that a new society of botanists 

be established to “unify and subserve the botanical 

interests of the country.” He ultimately voted against 

forming the Botanical Society of America.

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

meetings, courses, field trips, news of colleagues, 

new books, and professional opportunities, and the 

brand new, online, open access journal, Applications 

in Plant Sciences (APPS), for communication of 

innovative tools and protocols.  The BSA fosters 

the careers of our members with multiple awards 

and recognition, and supports travel and research 

for our graduate students. The society is active 

in development of programs that will enhance 

botanical education at the K-12 level (Planting 

Science) and undergraduate level (PlantED) and is 

increasingly involved in providing a collective voice 

concerning policy issues. The BSA website (www. records 250,000 hits per month, and 

reaches others via e-news and social media.  The 

Society has over 6,300 Facebook and 1,800 Twitter 

followers.  By the second day of the 2013 meeting, 

over 1000 Tweets carried #Botany2013.

But everything on this list can be done online. 

So, I come back to the question that I started with:  

Why do we come to meetings?  1100 people came to 

the meeting in New Orleans; botanists came from 

49 states of the US and from 35 other countries.  


From the Royal Society, to the Lunar Society, 

to the X Club, to the BSA, we come to meetings.  

Certainly, we all want to share information and 

research with scientists and educators from around 

the world.  But the heart and soul of a society, what 

makes us attend meetings, is shared fellowship.  We 

want to make personal contacts, we come to share 

ideas and information, we come to experience that 

completely unexpected and unsought insight that 

comes from serendipitous interactions, for the 

intense sustained conversations that occur in the 

hallways.  We come to work through experiments 

over a beer, to better understand our own data, to 

figure out how someone else did that, how someone 

else taught that. Over 450 years after the initial 

gatherings at the home of della Porta in Naples, 

gatherings are still part of the essence of science 

and of being a scientist.  The same impulse that 

drew the lunar men out into the dark night, or Asa 

Gray to contemplate a 3,000-mile journey at the 

dawn of the transcontinental railroad, draws us to 

meetings all over North America. 

I sent out a query during the 2013 New Orleans 

meeting to all of the users of the new mobile 

meeting app asking “Why are you here?” Almost 

every response included “make new connections” 

and “reconnect with friends and colleagues.”  Sure, 

we can interact and collaborate online, and we 

do. But, we are not avatars. And so we come to 

meetings.  This was true in 1560, it’s true today, and 

I am confident that it will be true into the future. 

While innovative technology and the digital world 

are clearly critical to science, it is societies and 

meetings that make us complete as scientists.  


To assemble this address, I consulted with many 

different sources, including the websites of the 

individual societies and the following references:
Barton, R. 2003. ‘“Men of Science”: Language, 

Identity and Professionalization in the Mid-

Victorian Scientific Community’. History of 

Science 41:73–119.

Crane, D. 1972. Invisible Colleges: Diffusion of 

Knowledge in Scientific Communities. Chicago: 

University of Chicago Press.

Geiger, R. L. 1986. To Advance Knowledge: The 

Growth of American Research Universities, 

1900–1940. New York: Oxford University Press.

Gross, A. G., J. E. Harmon, and M. Reidy. 2002. 

Communicating Science: The Scientific Article 

from the 17th Century to the Present. Oxford.

Hopkins, J. 2011. The role of learned societies 

in knowledge exchange and dissemination: 

the case of the Regional Studies Association, 

1965–2005. History of Education: Journal of the 

History of Education Society 40(2):255–271.

Volume 1 of the American Journal of Botany ap-

peared in 1914. We will celebrate our journal’s cen-

tennial next year!

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

Johns, A. 2000. Miscellaneous Methods: Authors, 

Societies and Journals in Early Modern 

England,  British Journal for the History of 

Science 33:159–186.

McCarthy, D., and M. Rands. 2013. Learned 

societies: a bridge between research, policy 

making and funding. Studies in Higher 

Education 38:470–483. 

McClellan, J. E., 1985. Science Reorganized: Scientific 

Societies in the Eighteenth Century. New York: 

Columbia University Press.

Morrell, J. B. and A. Thackray. 1981. Gentlemen of 

Science: Early Years of the British Association for 

the Advancement of Science. Oxford.

Ornstein, M. 1913. The Role of Scientific Societies 

in the Seventeenth Century. Dissertation, 

Columbia University, New York.

Secord, A. 1994. Corresponding Interests: Artisans 

and Gentlemen in Nineteenth-Century Natural 

History, British Journal for the History of Science 


Secord, A. 1994. Science in the pub: Artisan 

Botanists in Early Nineteenth-Century 

Lancashire. History of Science 32:269–315.

Secord, J. A. 2007. How Scientific Conversation 

Became Shop Talk. Transactions of the Royal 

Historical Society 17:129–156. 

Smocovitis, V. B. 2006. One Hundred Years of 

American Botany: A Short History of the 

Botanical Society of America. American Journal 

of Botany 93:942–952.

Stuckey, R. L., and E. D. Rudolph. 1974. History 

of Botany, 1947-1972; with a Bibliographic 

Appendix.  Annals of the Missouri Botanical 

Garden 61:237–261.

Tippo, O. 1956. The Early History of the Botanical 

Society of America. American Journal of Botany 


White, P. 2003. Thomas Huxley: Making the ‘Man of 

Science’. Cambridge.

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

The BSA Legacy Society Celebrated the Northeast

A beautiful October evening at the New York Botanical Garden was the setting for a heartwarming 

commemoration dinner for some life-long BSA members from the Northeast region. This long-overdue 

and very special celebration honored the outstanding contributions to science, education, and the Society 

on the part of these members.  Legacy Society member and Vice President for Laboratory Research of the 

New York Botanical Garden, Dr. Dennis Stevenson, graciously hosted the evening of commemorations, 

and the private tours of the Pfizer Laboratory and the New York Botanical Garden the following day.  

Members from all parts of the Northeast region came together for the event in order to take part in 

honoring these very special members.

If you are not familiar with the BSA’s Legacy Society, it is a growing group of members from all 

generations who are committed to sustaining the century-old Society in perpetuity. The Legacy Society has 

held commemoration events in the Midwest and Northeast regions over the past two years, and plans to 

hold additional events in more regions throughout the country in the near future.

Legacy Society member Dennis Stevenson thanks Anitra Thorhaug 

for her service and presents her with her commemorative plaque.

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

And Dr. Weller went on to issue a challenge to 

every BSA member, “If you think the work we do 

as botanists is important, step up and be sure it has 

sound financial footing.”

Dr. Anitra Thorhaug of Miami, now retired, calls 

the Botanical Society her “intellectual botanical 

home,” and is far from shy about her opinions on 

giving. “It’s already in my will,” she says. “It’s not 

too early to start thinking about what your legacy is 

going to be. Do it when you are young enough and 

have energy enough,” she said.

Dr. Dennis Stevenson of New York is part of the 

team working to build the Legacy Society for the 

next generation. “As you become a senior person, it’s 

your turn,” he says, talking about the connections 

made through a career in botany and the need to 

support the generations of incoming botanists with 

a strong organization.  

“BSA has been such an important part of my 

development, it’s important to give back,” says Dr. 

David Spooner of the University of Wisconsin 

at Madison. “The Legacy Society is important to 

highlight the contributions and pave the way for 

younger members.

“The future is in the students,” says Dr. Janice 

Coons of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, 

IL. “If we don’t involve them in the Legacy Society, 

we won’t have it.”  What that means, she explains, is 

that all botanists learn that there is a need to give.  

Giving can be through annual donations of any 

size and through an estate gift.  For Dr. Coons, the 

gifts would mean a future where the Society could 

expand without financial constraints to put its ideas 

in motion.

A key when the discussion of younger member 

participation comes up is how to get them involved, 

or how much to ask. “Any level of participation 

is appreciated,” said Dr. Judy Jernstedt of the 

University of California at Davis. “A small donation 

is still representative of a tradition of philanthropy, 

and it will grow along with a career,” she said. “And, 

it’s a satisfying trajectory to be on.”

Point being, there is something for everyone.
Dr. Calvin Clyde and Dr. Carol Wilson, both of 

Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden in Claremont, 

CA, talk about their decision as a couple to become 

involved in the Legacy Society.  “Money talks and 

The founders of BSA’s Legacy Society have a 

vision for putting together a financial platform that 

would take the organization into fiscal security for 

the foreseeable future. And beyond.

Between them, there was a firm sense that their 

combined voices would convince others in the 

botanical sciences that they could, and should, 

bequeath that sound future. Everyone. Not just the 

gray hairs, as they call themselves, and most senior 

of the scientists. Everyone has something to gain 

in this precious legacy, and therefore they struggle 

to show that the Legacy Society is for everyone. 

Relevant could be the key word they choose. 

Dr. Jim Seago of State University of Oswego, NY, 

said it was just “natural” to want to give back to the 

Society that had given him so much opportunity. 

What he hopes is that he can influence others to 

have that same thought. 

As part of the Legacy team in BSA that has 

brought giving from 30 individuals up to 151 

people in just a few years, they believe they are 

getting their message out.  The Legacy Society is 

about being responsible and planning for the future 

of the Society. 

Dr. Joe Armstrong of Illinois State University 

at Normal, IL, and his wife Nancy are strong 

supporters of the Legacy Society and combine 

their ideas of professionalism and support in their 

reasoning for putting their financial backing there. 

“It’s just part of being professional and being active 

in the Society,” says Dr. Armstrong.  And Mrs. 

Armstrong adds, “It’s about support for me. I see 

what the profession has done for my husband and 

the other people I know, and it’s the right thing to 


Dr. Ann Sakai of the University of California 

Irvine echoes those sentiments, saying, “I’ve gained 

a tremendous amount from botany and the Society 

from the time I started my career to now and this is 

one way of giving back.” 

Her husband, Dr. Steve Weller, also with the 

University of California Irvine and Past President 

of BSA, said that he would like to see the Legacy 

Society expand its reach to include a broader 

group in BSA. “We’ve become a broader group 

demographically and I’d like to include more 

people in our work. It’s not just about fairness, but 

also about our work and getting it done,” he said.  

Can BSA’s Legacy Society Include You?

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

the larger the endowment of the BSA, the bigger 

impact it can have,” Dr. Clyde said. “BSA should 

have a larger endowment to create more focus on 

the economic importance of plants.” 

Dr. Wilson, admittedly shy, said botany and 

particularly the Botanical Society “has always been 

there for me.  I want botany to be there always for 

others too.”

The couple thinks the Legacy Society creates a 

culture of giving where it becomes a habit to give 

regularly. “The thought of not giving regularly to 

BSA is foreign,” Dr. Clyde said, with Dr. Wilson 

chiming in that “we not only get a lot out of it, but 

also learn to be generous.”

Dr. David Lee of Florida International University 

in Miami said it succinctly. “Your loyalty should 

be to your discipline, even more than to your 

institution,” he said, comparing giving to BSA to 

alumni associations.

It’s a valid comparison, says Dr. Ed Schneider 

of the University of Minnesota, who would love 

to see many of the professors begin to talk to their 

students about giving to the Society as an important 

thing to do. “The BSA voice is not enough,” he 

explained. “But when your mentor talks about it, 

that’s different.  The universities do it, they need to 

do it, and so do we.  We plant and germinate a seed, 

and when that student is in a position to give, they 


Dr. Scott Russell of the University of Oklahoma 

in Norman added that both the continuity of 

continued gifts and new gifts will be important to 

the growth of the Legacy Society.  And those are 

mostly likely to come from the young botanical 

scientists. So what do the young scientists think?

Dr. Mackenzie Taylor of Creighton University 

in Nebraska, who just received her post-doctoral 

degree and was a former student representative on 

the BSA Board, said she sees the Legacy Society as 

something for people on the edge of retirement.  

With head cocked, waiting to hear if there was 

something more, she said she would definitely 

listen if there was some way to participate.

Dr. Chris Martine of Bucknell University in 

Lewisburg, PA, an active volunteer and strong 

supporter of the Society, said his impression was 

that the Legacy Society was for the older members. 

Even the word “legacy” might send the wrong 

message, he thought, but his interest was piqued. 

The ability to be welcomed among and supportive 

of the Society’s most elite and to know they would 

be building the future is a message Dr. Martine 

believed would reverberate.

So, for the Legacy Society, a platform of growth 

means broader participation, inclusive messaging 

and, as Chris Martine would say, “botanical giving 

is cool!”

Is Legacy Membership for You?


Being a Legacy Member is easy. 

Just list the Botanical Society of America as a component in your legacy gifts. 

It’s that simple—no minimum amount, just a simple promise to remember the 



Giving a legacy gift to the BSA is simple. You include a bequest to the BSA in 

your estate plan and/or sign up to give an annual gift and notify us by filling out 

a short form found at  


All levels of gifts made to the Botanical Society of America are significant, and 

help us continue and further our mission.

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BSA Science Education 

News and Notes

New and Ongoing Society 


PlantED Digital Library

Call for botany teaching and learning resources:  

Resource Editors J. Phil Gibson and Stokes Baker 

look forward to your submissions to the digital 

library.  Inquiry activities, data sets, syllabi, images: 

these are only a few of the materials welcome.  If 

you have resource to contribute, we’re here to help 

you share it.  Below we highlight an active learning 


Roots as Foragers by Stan Rice helps students 

experience plants as responsive rather than passive 

organisms.  Roots forage through heterogeneous 

media and proliferate in portions of the soil that 

have abundant nutrients. Students can see and 

measure this growth. Students also get to address 

issues of experimental design such as the sequence 

effect.  This lab is highly adaptable to address the 

broad question of how plants actively respond to 

the environment—phytoremediation and climate 

change are just some of the possible real-world 

issues of spatial and temporal heterogeneity of 

the environment can be connected to student 

investigation of root growth.  Download the lab 

activity with discussion of student data and ideas at 


PlantED, the BSA’s new resource portal, is run 

in conjunction with companion portals of the 

Ecological Society of America (ESA), the Society 

for Economic Botany, and the Society for the Study 

of Evolution.  Peer-reviewed resources in PlantED 

will be searchable across these four portals and 

included in the National Digital Science Library.  

Your resource supporting botanical education 

could reach a wide audience.  

Resources across the collaborative effort will be 

showcased on a quarterly basis in Jigsaw, which is 

produced by the ESA monthly.  Jigsaw was a joint 

issue this past October and contained a special 

feature on Climate Change.  Profiled resources 

in addition to Roots as Foragers include:  Leaves 

as Thermometers, What Does Agriculture Have 

to do with Climate Change?, and What NOT 

to Read: A Lesson in Reviewing and Critiquing 

Scientific Literature Using a Junk Science Article on 

Climate Change.  To access all resources, reports, 

and announcements in the October issue and 

archives of Jigsaw, please visit


PlantingScience Fall Session 

Going Strong - New Resources, 

Partners Profiled

Over 200 teams were online this fall, working 

on plant investigations with their scientist 

mentors.  This year the Ecological Society of 

America joined the American Society of Plant 

Biologists and Botanical Society of America in 

sponsoring graduate students/post-doctoral 

researchers to make yearlong commitments as 

members of the Master Plant Science Team.   

Mentors of all stripes often wonder about the 

impact of their online conversations with student 

teams.  Participating teachers, who witness first-

hand the learning benefits for students, can assure 

mentors they are making a difference: 

•  “Thanks for all you do.  My kids are growing 

alongside their plants :)”
•  “My 9th/10th graders thought it was the best 

thing they had ever done in a science class ever!”

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:  Catrina 

Adams, Acting Director of Education, at or Marshall Sundberg, PSB Editor, at psb@

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

We are excited to announce some new resources 

on  We have added 

extensive “Roadmap through an Investigation” 

for students, teachers, and scientist mentors that 

covers diverse aspects of doing and communicating 

science from exploring initial ideas to making final 

presentations.  Also available is a downloadable 

“Plant Investigation Toolkit” with help on topics 

ranging from “Using Math” to “Plant Care” to 

“Imaging Technology.” You’ll also see a “Partners’ 

Links” section featuring resources for teaching 

and learning about plants, and information about 

science careers.  A new “About” section describes 

partners and society liaison contacts.  

If you haven’t visited 

lately, please stop by!  Take a look at the project 

gallery to see how students are progressing with 

their projects, or browse the new resources.

An additional resource, which is an outcome 

of the National Science Foundation grant that 

supported the project from 2007-2013, will be 

available this winter.  Inquiring About Plants:  A 

Practical Guide to Engaging Science Practices by 

Gordon Uno, Marshall Sundberg, and Claire 

Hemingway complements PlantingScience but is 

a stand-alone resource for high school and college 

science educators.  The book offers classroom-

tested tricks of the trade for drawing students 

into practice of science, focusing courses on the 

big ideas of biology and student understanding of 

these ideas, and creating your own inquiry-based 

activities.  It is due out by December 20132013, 

and proceeds of the $10.95 book will go to support 


Broad and Diverse 

Participation in Botany

In line with the mission and objectives of 

the Society, the BSA was awarded the PLANTS 

grant (2011-2015, A. Sakai and A. Hirsch, co-

PIs) by the National Science Foundation to bring 

undergraduates from a diversity of backgrounds 

to the annual Botany meetings. The goal of this 

grant is to increase the number of undergraduates 

from underrepresented groups who attend 

these meetings, and to increase their level of 

academic excellence and motivation to pursue 

advanced degrees in the plant sciences.  Thus far, 

37 students have participated in the PLANTS 

programs, and the great majority of these students 

who have graduated are now in graduate school 

or botanically related professions.  The success 

of this program is largely due to the generous 

commitment of volunteer graduate students, 

postdocs, and professional mentors at the meetings.  

We encourage members to publicize this program 

to interested undergraduates and to consider 

becoming a mentor for this program for BOTANY 

2014.  Applications for the 2014 meeting in Boise, 

Idaho, will be accepted beginning February 1 

and due by March 15, 2014.  For details, please 



At BOTANY 2013, the “Broadening Participation-

Recruiting and Retaining Outstanding Scientists 

in the Botanical Sciences” symposium (A. 

Monfils, A. Sakai, organizers) explored some of 

the best practices to encourage recruitment and 

retention of all students, and particularly URM 

(underrepresented minority) students.  Speakers 

discussed successful teaching approaches in the 

introductory core biology courses, mentoring 

strategies for students and academics, recruitment 

of a diverse community of scientists, overcoming the 

dual hurdles of science and technology as it relates 

to current digitization initiatives, and curricular 

and institutional programs to promote diversity in 

the sciences.  This symposium was sponsored by 

the BSA Ecology, Teaching, and Systematics/ASPT 

sections as well as by iDigBio.  The BSA Human 

Diversity Committee invited Muriel Poston as 

the featured speaker for the Enhancing Scientist 

Diversity in Plant Biology Luncheon, who spoke on 

‘Cultivating the next generation of plant biologists:  

Opportunities and challenges’. Presentations from 

the symposium by Judith Skog, Henry Bart, Mary 

McKenna, Jose Herrera, David Haak, and Chris 

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

O’Neal, along with the talk by Muriel Poston,  are 

available online.  In addition, you’ll find resources 

on understanding and overcoming implicit bias at

In early October 2013, the BSA and the American 

Society of Plant Biologists shared sponsorship of 

a booth and symposium at the annual SACNAS 

meeting (The Society for the Advancement of 

Chicanos and Native Americans in Science).  The 

Symposium, “Living with Neighbors: How plants 

cope with other organisms” was well attended.   

BSA also sponsored two undergraduate poster 

awards at the meeting.  The winners of our awards 

also received a complimentary one-year BSA 

membership.   Thanks to volunteers Ann Sakai, 

Brenda Molano-Flores, Diane Marshall, and 

Monica Mendez for working at the booth, judging 

poster presentations, and highlighting careers in 

botany at this important meeting.

From Around the Nation

Persistence of College 

Students in STEM Fields

Fewer than half of the students who arrive at 

college intending to major in science, technology, 

engineering or math fulfill those intentions.  What 

are attributes and experiences that influence an 

individuals’ persistence in a field?  Mark Graham 

and colleagues recently reviewed the research 

and present a new framework for persistence of 

STEM majors.  This new framework integrates 

the mutually reinforcing elements of learning 

and identifying as a scientist as determinants 

of persistence with student confidence in their 

ability and motivation to engage.  Programs 

that are successful in retaining STEM majors, 

including those from underrepresented groups, 

commonly include: (1) early research experiences, 

(2) active learning in introductory courses, and (3) 

membership in learning communities.  See the 27 

September Science Education Forum:


Vision and Change 2013: 

Chronicling Change, Inspiring 

the Future 

Following the 2011 Call to Action Report, the 

American Association for the Advancement of 

Science (AAAS) with support from the National 

Science Foundation has continued to promote 

a transformation of undergraduate biology 

education.  The August 2013 Conference focused 

on capturing and sharing exemplars of how 

change is being accomplished across a variety of 

institutions.  Working groups at the conference 

discussed:  How to Lead Change, How to Help 

Faculty Act as Agents of Change, How to Change 

the Student Experience, How to Build Networks 

for Change, and How to Amass Evidence of 

Change.  Presentations by the Working Groups 

and Plenary Speakers are available online:


Sustainability Improves 

Student Learning 

“How can we better prepare students for the 21st 

Century ‘Big Questions’ that relate to real-world 

issues of energy, air and water quality, climate 

change?”  That is one driving question underlying 

a collaboration of Project Kaleidoscope at the 

AAC&U, the Disciplinary Association Network for 

Sustainability, and Mobilizing STEM Education for 

a Sustainable Future.  A convocation this September 

brought together disciplinary society, faculty, and 

student perspectives to discuss how learning in 

the context of sustainability contributes to student 

learning outcomes and how priority issues across 

disciplines connect with sustainability.  The SISL 

collaboration provides resources for Empowering 

Students to Engage in Solution Building for 

Society and Teaching Activities for a wide array 

of sustainability issues, such as Food Systems and 

Agriculture and Ecosystem Health:

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Editor’s Choice Review

Deciphering how cells make en-

ergy: an acid test.  

Allchin, Douglas.  2013. The American Biol-

ogy Teacher 75:598-601.

Peter Mitchell proposed the chemiosmotic theory 

of ATP production in 1961, but it was nearly 

20 years before it was well-enough accepted to 

make it into biology textbooks (e.g., Arms and 

Camp, 1979; Keeton’s 3rd ed., 1980).  Part of that 

acceptance was due to André Jagendorf’s acid-bath 

experiments with chloroplasts—the focus of this 

article.  Allchin clearly describes why chloroplasts 

were the preferred organelle to test this theory and 

how the experiment worked. In modern textbooks, 

of course, the frame of reference is always the 

electron transport chain of mitochondria, so this 

historical example is useful to demonstrate that not 

only does it also occur in plants, but that it was first 

experimentally demonstrated in chloroplasts.  Oh 

yes, the second diagram used by Keeton to illustrate 

how this works in his 1980 text was Jagendorf’s 

acid-bath experiment!



 Unity and disunity in biology.  Bio-

Science 63:811-816.

Niklas, Karl J., Thomas G. Owens, and Randy 

O. Wayne.  2013. 

There is no doubt that biological knowledge is 

growing exponentially and subfields are becoming 

more and more specialized and conceptually isolated 

from other subfields.  To some, success is defined by 

specialization and there is certainly a trend to train 

students in an ever more narrowly defined field.  

Niklas et al. argue that as a consequence of this 

specialization, it is even more important that we 

consider laying a broad conceptual base for students 

at the undergraduate level.  Such integration, early 

in their academic experience, will reinforce the 

importance of this perspective as they move on to 

graduate work and specialization.  “We must train 

our students to be enthusiastic generalists first and 

specialists second, so that they can achieve a new 

(and truly all-inclusive) modern synthesis.”


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this colleague’s friend who was a student at NYU. 

This NYU student had a friend in the entomology 

department at Cornell. When they were visiting 

this entomologist, he asked Rudy whether he 

would like to study at Cornell. Rudy immediately 

said “yes,” the entomologist had Rudy complete 

all the paperwork, and he became a student there. 

Cornell’s liberal arts college was very expensive but 

the agricultural college was almost free, with no 

tuition and only a nominal fee. That was how Rudy 

got his education there! He finished his bachelor of 

science degree in three years. 

At Cornell, Rudy met his first wife, Olga, who was 

born in New York City into a Serbian immigrant 

family. They were married in 1943, by the mayor of 

Ithaca. At that time in the United States, there was a 

tradition that the presider of the wedding ceremony 

would ask the bride, “Do you accept and obey Mr. 

so and so?” As the mayor knew Rudy’s character, 

he asked Olga whether she wanted the word “obey” 

used at the wedding ceremony. Olga replied “no.” 

Yet, she “obeyed” Rudy throughout her entire life to 

assist him in all aspects of his science, traveled all 

over the world on collecting trips, and tended to all 

of Rudy’s needs in his home office and laboratory. 

Rudy certainly was a worldly figure in botany, 

but his worldly character was manifested before 

he became a botanist. He and Olga were both ex-

Catholics, and therefore were not married in a 

Catholic church. Two experiences influenced his 

departure from the church. One was that he saw 

how in Spain the Catholic Church allied itself with 

the fascist government. The other was that he saw 

the church as being very intolerant. For example, 

when he was between 11 and 13 years old, he had a 

Jewish friend, but a young minister told him not to 

play with any Jew. At Rudy and Olga’s wedding, the 

best man was a Hindu. 

In Cornell, Rudy was studying insect taxonomy, 

but the department was oriented toward application 

(insect control).  In the 1940s, DDT was used to 

control pests and house flies. He saw that 99% 

of the houseflies were killed but 1% remained. 

He suggested to the people who were studying 

insect control that this surviving 1% would be a 

big problem for the future. Thus, he saw chemical 

control as no solution to the problem, and decided 

not to pursue a career in that field. 

At that time, bryology was a relatively small field. 

Rudy thought that pursuing a discipline such as 

In Memoriam

Rudolf Mathias Schuster


Rudolf M. Schuster, an eminent botanist, 

hepaticologist, scholar, and world explorer, passed 

away on Friday, November 16, 2012, in Stanwood, 


Dr. Schuster was born on April 8, one thousand 

nine hundred twenty-one (as he would have 

pronounced it in the German way) in Altmühldorf, 

Bavaria, southern Germany. His father was Mathias 

Schuster, a cabinet maker, and  his mother was 

Maria Schuster. He had a younger brother, by four 

years, with whom he had a lot in common. 

Rudy, as he was known to many in botanical 

circles, came to the United States at the age of 

nine and lived in New York City for his first 11 

years in the United States. He finished high school 

in 1939. It was the time of the Great Depression, 

which helped shape Rudy’s frugal lifestyle. For his 

college education, Rudy first attended City College 

of New York.  One day while he was washing 

chemical vials with a colleague who had attended 

New York University (NYU), he was introduced to 


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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

bryology, a pure science that nobody would care 

much about, would allow him complete freedom 

to do whatever he wanted (which was absolutely 

important for a man like Rudy!). His interest in 

bryology actually started before his years at Cornell. 

As a teenager in New York City, he often visited the 

New York Botanical Garden, which had an exhibit 

of bryophytes. This experience obviously had an 

influence on him. He started collecting bryophytes 

at the age of 18 or 19, around the time he finished 

high school and started college. His love of nature, 

however, went back much further. One of his 

earliest memories was chasing butterflies on a walk 

with his father when the family lived in Germany. 

While Rudy was a student, Olga was working at 

Cornell University Press. One time, she told her 

boss that her husband was going to publish books 

on hepatics; he did not think she was serious. 

Later, when they both went back to visit Cornell, 

they saw Olga’s former boss and told him that 

Columbia University Press had published two 

of Rudy’s volumes on North American hepatics 

and hornworts—a statement that elicited a funny 

expression from him. Those books, of course, 

became affectionately known as “the Big Green” 

due to their large size and eventually became a 

multi-volume treatise.


 The spores of the Big 

Green obviously germinated during the time of 

Rudy’s Cornell years as an entomology undergrad, 

and this can also be seen from Rudy’s first major 

publication, “The Ecology and Distribution of 

Hepaticae in Central and Western New York,” 

which was published in The American Midland 

Naturalist in 1949 (42: 513–712). 

Rudy’s study of entomology continued after 

Cornell, into graduate school. Surprisingly to many 

in the bryology world, Rudy actually obtained 

his PhD in entomology from the University of 

Minnesota in 1948. However, he had assistantships 

in botany and was a frequent visitor to the 

University herbarium.


 His study of the hepatics 

of Minnesota and adjacent regions in those years 

resulted in the three papers


 that greatly enhanced 

our understanding of the hepatic flora of the Upper 

Mississippi valley.


After leaving the University of Minnesota, 

Rudy traveled down the river to the University 

of Mississippi and worked there as an assistant 

professor. It was there, in 1950, that he received a 

National Science Foundation grant to write the Big 

Green. After three years in Mississippi, he took a 

visiting assistant professorship at Duke University. 

Louis Anderson, a renowned bryologist at Duke 

and a Mississippi native, once visited Rudy and 

told him that he should go somewhere else for a 

better career. He then worked to get Rudy out of 

Mississippi. However, with Anderson as a moss 

expert and H. L. Blomquist as a liverwort expert on 

Duke’s faculty, there was not a permanent position 

there for Rudy. Thus, Rudy went to the University 

of Michigan and was there for a year as an assistant 


In 1957, when an opportunity came up at the 

University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Rudy 

moved there. He was first appointed as an associate 

professor and a year later was promoted to a full 

professor. He remained at UMass until his retirement 

in 1983. Rudy and Olga loved picturesque western 

Massachusetts, and the rich bryophyte flora there 

made their life and work even more enjoyable. In 

addition to their home in Hadley, a small town next 

to Amherst, they also owned a piece of property (60 

acres) in Conway, a low mountain town northwest 

of Hadley. Rudy, Olga, and their two daughters 

spent a lot of weekends in the wood cabin that 

Rudy built himself on the Conway property. The 

hepatic diversity on that property was, of course, 

thoroughly surveyed by Rudy and often mentioned 

in the Big Green. Back in Hadley, the garden 

surrounding their house was filled with plants 

Rudy brought home from his collecting trips in 

the southern Appalachian Mountains. The physical 

labor required to maintain the garden and the 

Conway property obviously helped to keep Rudy’s 

sanity after long hours of work in the basement 

laboratory, which later officially acquired the 

name of Hadley Cryptogamic Laboratory. In their 

later years, Rudy and Olga also owned a home in 

Arizona, and the two would migrate to the south 

in winter and come back to the north in summer. 

In the winter of 2004, however, the two stayed in 

Massachusetts, and Olga passed away on February 

23, 2005, in their home. After Olga passed away, 

Rudy was lonely but continued to work on the last 

major project in his life, the Austral Hepaticae. On 

November 16, 2005, he married his second wife, 

Marlene, who became Rudy’s new companion and 

assistant in all of his work and travel. 

Rudy’s major contribution to botany and 

hepaticology lies in the astounding new diversity 

of liverworts he added to our knowledge. Mostly 

by himself or through collaboration with a small 

number of colleagues, he described 463 species, 

83 genera, and 15 families new to science. These 

taxa account for 6%, 22%, and 18%, respectively, 

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

of the taxa at these ranks for liverworts. It is 

difficult to name another contemporary botanist 

who discovered so much new diversity of a major 

clade of land plants. These discoveries were made 

in his land-combing floristic surveys of hepatics in 

eastern North America, Greenland, New Zealand, 

and other parts of the world (in total he did 

fieldwork in over 25 countries!). Over the decades, 

Rudy collected in the order of 50,000 specimens. 

This extremely valuable and now historical 

collection resides at the Field Museum of Natural 

History, Chicago, along with his microscopic slide 

collection. Much of his extensive library was also 

kindly donated to the Museum by his wife, Marlene 


Two significant and ever-lasting results of his 

surveys were published in two multi-volume works: 

The Hepaticae and Anthocerotae of North America, 

East of the Hundredth Meridian (the Big Green), 

consisting of six volumes, and Austral Hepaticae

consisting of two volumes. These floras are not mere 

conventional compilations of taxonomic diversity; 

they are encyclopedic treatments of liverworts 

and hornworts as well as their biology. The first 

volume of the Big Green in particular contains 

rich information about the history of studies of 

hepatics (which historically included hornworts!), 

morphology, anatomy, development, and cytology 

of liverworts. Naturally, Rudy published his own 

system of classification of liverworts. Blocks of 

families that appeared in his system corresponded 

to clades and grades identified in later molecular 

systematic analyses, which reflected the power of 

his sharp insights and critical thinking based on 

both field observation and laboratory examination 

under microscopes. It is noteworthy that Rudy 

was also an excellent illustrator, having drawn and 

inked the majority of the illustrations in his books 

and papers. He spent countless hours painstakingly 

preparing these fine illustrative plates—totaling 

over 1000 throughout his career. These plates always 

received outstanding comments in book reviews, 

and were extraordinarily precise and detailed. 

At the time of publication (before cladistics and 

molecular systematics), his classification system 

represented a truly outstanding summary of the 

knowledge of liverworts. 

Rudy’s contributions to botany went beyond 

hepatics. He was one of the first botanists to 

recognize the importance of Wallace’s Line in 

plant biogeography, separating Australia of 

Gondwanaland from Southeast Asia of Laurasia.



He astutely recognized that the rich diversity of 

angiosperms and other plant groups in the general 

area between Assam and Fiji and between Japan 

and Tasmania–New Zealand was not necessarily 

the result of the origin of angiosperms or any 

other group in the area, but to the juxtaposition 

of elements of two rich biotas—Laurasia-derived 

and Gondwanaland-derived.


 This historical 

biogeographic analysis directly resulted in the 

rejection of Australasia as the cradle of the 

angiosperm hypothesis proposed by A. C. Smith 

and A. Takhtajan. Moreover, Rudy also provided 

botanical evidence supporting the continental drift 

theory at a time when it was still controversial.


Rudy is one of the foremost classical scholars 

of our time in botany. His rigorous scholarship is 

clearly reflected in his books and literally hundreds 

of published papers. One of the best examples 

demonstrating his relentless pursuit of the truth is his 

tracing of ideas that contributed to the recognition 

of hornworts as a distinct lineage of bryophytes 

that is at the level of liverworts or mosses. Until the 

late 1800s, hornworts were always thought to be 

included in hepatics. Howe


 is usually credited with 

formally elevating the Anthocerotales to the rank of 

a separate class (Anthocerotes), together with the 

class Hepaticae. In the first volume of the Big Green 

(p. 369), Rudy provided a long footnote discussing 

the ideas of three bryologists, Janczewski,





and Underwood,


 that eventually resulted in 

Howe’s nomenclatural treatment. These authors 

emphasized several features that set hornworts apart 

from liverworts and thus warranted their placement 

in a separate higher-rank taxon equivalent to 

liverworts and mosses: the embedded archegonium 

(with no differentiated archegonial wall), the 

single chloroplast in the cell, and the basipetal 

development of the sporangium with basipetal 

sequence in spore formation. These features have 

figured prominently in recent discussion on the 

phylogenetic position of hornworts. 

Rudy was a generous and hospitable man, even 

though he had a strong personality. His Bavarian 

stubbornness and diligence undoubtedly played 

a role in shaping his career of studying one of the 

most recalcitrant survivors of plants on earth. He 

will be greatly missed by botanists all over the 


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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013


Claire Hemingway 

Claire Hemingway, the Botanical Society of 

America’s first Education Director, has taken a 

new position as Science Advisor with the Division 

of Environmental Biology at the National Science 

Foundation (NSF). She says that she’s looking 

forward to advancing science and broader impacts.

Claire was a BSA staff member for the past nine 

years, first as Managing Editor of the American 

Journal of Botany and more recently as Education 

Director working on behalf of the Society’s 

education and outreach mission. She was principal 

investigator of two successful NSF-funded education 

projects for the Society and was instrumental in 

directing the evolution of PlantingScience from 

its origin as SciPi and SIP

to what it is today—a 

world-class team including professional scientists 

from the BSA, American Society of Plant Biologists, 

and Biological Sciences Curriculum Study and 

outstanding middle and high school teachers from 

throughout the country and around the world. 

Being able to ride herd on a group of independently 

minded academics while bridging the gap between 

schools and professional scientists is a testament to 

her leadership and inspirational skills. Through her 

efforts, the participants in the summer institutes 

for teachers and the Master Plant Science Mentors 

have blossomed into a model of synergistic positive 

impact on student learning about plants. Before 

leaving she oversaw revision of a new NSF proposal, 

which will be submitted in December to support 

PlantingScience into the future. 

We wish her the best in her new position at NSF. 


Literature Cited

1. Schuster, R. M. 1966. The Hepaticae and 

Anthocerotae of North America, Vol. I. Columbia 

University Press, New York, New York, USA.

2. Schuster, R. M. 1969. The Hepaticae and 

Anthocerotae of North America, Vol. II Columbia 

University Press, New York, New York, USA.

3.  Frenkel, A. W., and E. C. Abbe. 1988. Rudolf 

Schuster’s contribution to Minnesota Botany. 

Beiheft zur Nova Hedwigia 90: 25–26.

4.  Schuster, R. M. 1953 Boreal Hepaticae, a manual 

of the liverworts of Minnesota and adjacent 

regions. Am. Midl. Nat. 49: 257–684.

5. Schuster, R. M. 1957. Boreal Hepaticae, a 

manual of the liverworts of Minnesota and 

adjacent regions. II. Ecology. Am. Midl. Nat. 57: 


6. Schuster, R. M. 1958. Boreal Hepaticae, a 

manual of the liverworts of Minnesota and 

adjacent regions. III. Phytogeography. Am. 

Midl. Nat. 59: 257–332.

7.  Cronquist, A. 1988. Schuster and Wallace’s Line. 

Beiheft zur Nova Hedwigia 90: 39–40.

8.  Schuster, R. M. 1972. Continental movements, 

“Wallace’s line” and Indomalayan-Australasian 

dispersal of land plants—some eclectic 

concepts. Bot. Rev. 38: 3–86.

9.  Schuster, R. M. 1969. Problems of antipodal 

distribution in lower land plants. Taxon 18: 46–91.

10. Howe, M. A. 1899. The Hepaticae and 

Anthocerotes of California. Memoirs of the 

Torrey Botanical Club 7: 1–208, pls. 88–122.


Janczewski, E. 1872. Vergleichende 

Untersuchungen ueber die Entwicklungsgeschichte 

des Archegoniums. Botanische Zeitung 30: 377–394, 

401–420, 440–443.

12. Hy, M. 1884. Recherches sur l’archégone et le 

développement du fruit des Muscinées. Annales 

des sciences naturelles, Série 6 Botanique 18: 

105–206, pls. 109–114.

13. Underwood, L. M. 1894. The Evolution of the 

Hepaticae. Botanical Gazette 19: 347–361.

-Yin-Long Qiu, Department of Ecology and Evolu-

tionary Biology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 

Michigan, USA; and Matt von Konrat and John J. 

Engel, The Field Museum, Chicago, Illinois, USA.

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013




The 41 Books in the Tania Norris 

Collection of Rare Botanical 

Books Span the 16th to 19th 


 LOS ANGELES—The Getty Research Institute 

(GRI) announced today the acquisition of The 

Tania Norris Collection of Rare Botanical Books, a 

gift from collector Tania Norris.  Assembled over 

the last 30 years by Ms. Norris through individual 

acquisitions from booksellers in the U.S., Europe, 

and Australia, the collection consists of 41 rare 

books that provide unparalleled insight into the 

contributions of natural science to visual culture in 

Europe from the sixteenth through the nineteenth 


Highlights of the collection include Crispin 

Van de Passe’s Hortus Floridus (1614), apparently 

the first illustrated book to apply the microscopy 

of magnifying lenses to botanical illustration; 

and Johann Christoph Volkamer’s Nürnbergische 

Hesperides (1708), documenting both the 

introduction of Italian citrus culture to Germany, 

and the revolution in urban planning that ensued 

from the parks designed for their cultivation and 

irrigation. Also found in the collection is a copy 

of Maria Sibylla Merian’s Derde en laatste deel der 

Rupsen Begin (1717), the first book to depict insect 

metamorphosis, reputedly hand-colored by her 


“The Getty Research Institute is deeply honored to 

receive the donation of the Tania Norris Collection 

of Rare Botanical Books from one of the founding 

members of our GRI Council. This gift promises to 

open novel paths to explore the complex historical 

intersections between science and art,” said Marcia 

Reed chief curator at the Getty Research Institute. 

“Tania’s passionate interests and her collecting 

instincts have created a very generous gift which 

has also served to raise the profile of an important 

subject with strong relevance for researchers who 

use our special collections.”

David Brafman, curator of rare books at the GRI, 

said, “The Norris Collection offers inestimable 

rewards for scholars researching global botanical 

trade and the ensuing stimulus of cultural exchange 

to the trend of collecting curiosities spawned in 

Renaissance and Baroque European culture. Other 

books in the collection document the codependent 

progress of technologies in the history of medicine, 

pharmacology, and the color and textile industries 

from the sixteenth to nineteenth centuries. No 

less important are the opportunities to study the 

complex artistic relationship between physiognomy 

and ‘naturalism’ in visual representation, as well as 

developments in urban planning and landscape 

architecture. Ms. Norris’ generous donation 

enhances significantly  GRI’s existing collections in 

such subjects and promises to transform  the way 

art historians examine the past in the future.”

In particular, the unique hand-colored copy of 

Maria Sibylla Merian’s Der Rupsen Begin  (Birth 

of the Butterfly) from the Norris Collection will 

find a companion in the GRI vaults: Merian’s 

stunning Metamorphosis of the Insects of Surinam 

(1719), the self-published book that documented 

the watercolors, drawings, and scientific studies 

she executed and conducted while exploring 

the wildlife of the South American jungles. The 

Limon Salerno da Genova (detail) from Nürn-

bergische Hesperides, Nuremberg, 1708. Johann 

Christoph Volkamer. The Getty Research Institute, 

2885-927. Donated by Tania Norris

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

GRI copy was featured prominently in the Getty 

Museum’s exhibition, “Merian and Daughters,” 

which celebrated the extraordinary pioneering 

contributions of the artist-naturalist, the first 

European woman to travel to America expressly for 

artistic purposes.

The Norris Collection will also prove an 

invaluable complement for research in landscape 

and still-life painting, as well as mention the insights 

it will provide to conservators and conservation 

scientists about recipes and global trade in color 

pigments and other preparations in the decorative 


In addition to being a founding member of 

the Getty Research Institute Collections Council, 

Ms. Norris also serves on the J. Paul Getty 

Museum Disegno Drawing Council and Paintings 

Conservation Council.

“It was one of the proudest moments of my life 

when the Getty Research Institute accepted my 

books for their library. I never collected expecting 

anyone else to think my books of interest,” said Ms. 

Norris. “But now at the GRI, anyone can view them; 

some have been or will soon be in exhibitions and 

programs. More importantly, they will be preserved 

for generations to come.”

“You don’t need much money, just passion to 

collect and you just never know what treasures you 

may have,” she added.

Much of the collection has been on deposit at 

the GRI and available to researchers; the remaining 

materials will be cataloged and available by the 

end of year. For more information about The 

Tania Norris Collection of Rare Botanical Books, 



Additional information is available at




Project Aims to Improve Access 

to Digital Texts through Online 


(ST. LOUIS)—The Missouri Botanical Garden 

was recently awarded a $449,641 grant by the 

Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) 

to test new means of using crowdsourcing and 

gaming to support the enhancement of texts from 

the Biodiversity Heritage Library (BHL). Grant 

funding begins in December 2013 and ends in 

December 2015. The Garden will partner with 

Harvard University, Cornell University and the 

New York Botanical Garden on the project.

The BHL is an international consortium of 

the leading natural history libraries that have 

collaborated to digitize records of the world’s 

biological diversity. It is the single largest open-

licensed source of biodiversity literature in the 

world with more than 40 million pages of scanned 

texts available online at www.biodiversitylibrary.


Digital libraries such as the BHL are hampered 

by poor output from Optical Character Recognition 

(OCR) software that makes it difficult for users 

to easily search texts. The BHL contains a variety 

of literature including books and journals dating 

back to the 1400s. Historic literature is particularly 

problematic for OCR software because of the 

variation in fonts, typesetting and layouts. There is 

currently no OCR engine to accurately recognize 

most types from the 15th  to mid-19th  centuries 

included in the collection. BHL’s horticultural 

catalogs and field notebooks also present challenges 

to OCR software because of their multi-columned 

layouts and use of handwritten notes. Garden 

staffers saw a pressing need to identify possible 

solutions for this problem.

The project, “Purposeful Gaming and BHL,” will 

demonstrate whether or not online games are a 

successful tool for analyzing and improving digital 

outputs. Users will be presented words that are 

difficult for software to recognize as tasks in a game.

“Digital gaming as entertainment has been 

around for several decades but only recently has 

it been used for more practical purposes,” said 

Trish Rose-Sandler, data project coordinator in the 

Center for Biodiversity Informatics at the Missouri 

Botanical Garden and data analyst for the BHL. 

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

“Combined with crowdsourcing, it can be a very 

efficient way to harness large numbers of users to 

complete a task.”

Benefits from the project include both improved 

access to content in the largest open-access 

repository in biodiversity, the BHL, and the 

demonstration of novel and more cost-effective 

approaches to generating searchable texts within 

the broader digital library community.

Teams from all four institutions will work 

with a professional software developer to design 

the gaming application needed for the project. 

Rose-Sandler will be responsible for the overall 

coordination of the project.

Plant Health Scientists 

Reiterate Support of 

Biotechnology on  

World Food Day

October 18, 2013 (St. Paul, MN)—Given the 

continuing debate about biotechnology, the 

Council of the American Phytopathological Society 

(APS) refined its position on the topic this week, 

as three pioneers of agricultural biotechnology 

received the World Food Prize. APS, the world’s 

largest organization of plant health scientists, 

represents nearly 5000 members in 90 different 

countries. Citing enormous potential benefits 

for management of plant diseases offered by 

this technology, APS reiterated its support and 

opposed mandatory labeling of food derived from 

genetically modified (GM) plants.

“Biotechnology today is a valuable tool for 

improving plant health, food and feed safety, and 

sustainable gains in plant productivity,” stated APS 

President George Abawi. “As has been discussed 

this week during the Borlaug Summit and the 

World Food Prize, biotechnology will continue to 

be an extremely important part of the toolbox for 

managing plant health.”

While strongly supporting transparent science-

based regulation of agricultural products, APS 

has long opposed regulating food, feed, and fiber 

products solely on the basis of the particular 

technology used to create these products.

“Current scientific evidence supports the 

conclusion that GM plants pose no greater safety 

risk than traditionally bred plants. Labeling GM 

could be very confusing to consumers,” suggested 

Abawi, “and could reduce the availability and use 

of this technology for the management of plant 


For a copy of the complete APS Position 

Statement on the Compulsory Labeling of 

Plants and Plant Products Derived from 

Biotechnology, visit



The Second International 

Conference on Duckweed 

Research and Applications

Rutgers, the State University of 

New Jersey, USA

August 21–24, 2013

Professor Dr. Eric Lam (Rutgers University and 

Conference Chair) and PD Dr. Klaus-J. Appenroth 

(University of Jena and Head of the International 

Duckweed Steering Committee) report about the 


Why was a meeting organized for the relatively 

small community of duckweed researchers and 


The international duckweed community 

organized a meeting because the members strongly 

feel that this family of plants has a great potential 

for practical applications as well as basic research. 

There is a very good chance to use duckweed for 

cleaning wastewater, as has been demonstrated in 

the past. Also, several species of duckweed have been 

reported to be the fastest-growing angiosperms 

and they can be grown in places that cannot be 

used for agriculture. The biomass can be used for 

producing energy—via starch fermentation, biogas 

production, or by other conversion methods. Thus, 

duckweed can help solve urgent problems facing 

mankind: availability of clean water and sustainable 

energy production.

What are the highlights of results presented at 

this meeting?

A key development for basic research involving 

duckweed will be the availability of genomic 

tools. Some important progress in this regard is 

several reports in the Conference that described 

sequencing and transcriptome studies that have 

been submitted for publication or are nearing 

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

completion. The genomic sequence of clone 7498 

of  Spirodela polyrhiza was selected in 2009 for 

sequencing by the DOE-JGI as a reference genome 

for duckweed. This work is now in review for 

publication and some of the characterization of 

the assembled genome scaffolds was reported by 

Wenq in Wang (group of Joachim Messing) from 

Rutgers University (New Brunswick, New Jersey, 

USA). Doug Bryant (from the Danforth Center 

in St. Louis, Missouri, USA) also reported results 

for 92 other clones of the same duckweed species 

that are being completed soon by a consortium of 

researchers from Rutgers and the Danforth Center.

By 2014, these efforts should make available 

a rich set of genomic resource for the duckweed 

community that will enable many advanced 

molecular approaches in this system. Almudena 

Molla-Morales from the group of Robert 

Martienssen (Cold Spring Harbor, New York, 

USA) presented results about the genetic studies 

for biofuel production using Lemna gibba. In 

addition to reporting their progress in sequencing 

a reference genome for L. gibba, she also presented 

an update on their progress to optimize stable gene 

transfer protocols in duckweed. The efficiency of 

genetic transformation was enhanced from 10% 

callus transformation (Yamamoto et al., 2001) to 

40% and the time for selection and regeneration 

was shortened from 7 to 5 weeks. This improvement 

should overcome a key bottleneck for research 

with duckweed in the near future, especially with 

the wealth of genomic information resulting 

from the various sequencing projects. In several 

reports from Japan the first results concerning 

the interaction of bacteria with the root system 

of duckweed were presented. The reported results 

now clearly demonstrated growth promotion and 

metabolic enhancement of duckweed upon co-

culture with specific species of bacteria. In one 

case, the signaling compound has been identified to 

be a carbohydrate (Masaaki Morikawa, Hokkaido 

University, Sapporo, Japan) and it can stimulate 

growth of different duckweed species as well as 

other model land plants. These exciting findings 

suggest the first example of duckweed-related 

research that may result in significant benefits to 

traditional agriculture.

After the genome of S. polyrhiza is known, how 

to proceed with research?

The completed sequences for multiple S. 

polyrhiza strains should pave the way for some key 

advances in duckweed research and applications. 

These include the following areas: (1) Mapping 

the sequence variation landscape in the duckweed 

genome should facilitate better understanding 

of the adaptation mechanisms for this family 

of aquatic plants; (2) creating better molecular 

techniques for rapid genotyping of closely related 

strains and species of duckweed; (3) determining 

the set of genes and enzymes present in the 

three genomes of these plants will provide the 

foundation for detailed analysis of its metabolic 

pathways as well as their regulatory pathways 

through enabling system biology approaches; (4) 

a well-annotated reference genome will enable 

rigorous transcriptomic approaches, such as RNA-

seq, for gene discovery and functional genomic 

studies; (5) the genome sequence, together with a 

transcriptome database, should provide immediate 

access to various duckweed promoters and coding 

sequences for basic research as well as commercial 


Which types of practical application will be 

most important in the next years?

Some of the key applications/products from 

duckweed will be: (1) systematic deployment of the 

duckweed platform to remediate wastewater from 

municipal and agricultural sources; (2) reliable 

production of feed and fuel products at different 

scales (from tons to thousands of tons per year); 

(3) development of duckweed-based biorefineries 

that can maximize use of the biomass for various 

renewable bioproducts such as bioplastics and 

high-value oils. 

What is it about social networking and 


As a new technology that is seeking to develop 

into a novel industry, it is essential at this juncture 

that we promote the system’s unique qualities and 

benefits to the public-at-large, as well as to unite 

the nascent community’s efforts in raising funds to 

support centralized, shared resources that will be 

critical for accelerated and sustainable development 

of research and applications. To help achieve these 

goals, adopting modern social media tools and 

channels as well as organizing the worldwide 

duckweed community through the International 

Duckweed Steering Committee are some of the 

efforts that are beginning to be implemented.

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

BSA Seeks Editor for  

Plant Science Bulletin

Deadline for Nominations Extended

The Botanical Society of America (BSA) is soliciting nominations for the position of Editor of the 

Plant Science Bulletin (PSB) to serve a five-year term, beginning January 2015. Both self-nominations and 

nominations of others are welcomed.

This is a rare leadership opportunity to contribute to the Society and the continued evolution of the PSB

We seek someone with the desire to pursue innovation and explore new ways to serve the Society.

Duties of the Editor include both aspirational responsibility (helping shape a strategic vision for the PSB 

along with the PSB Editorial Committee and BSA Publications Committee) and operational responsibilities 

(soliciting contributions, coordinating reviews, working with Society office staff to produce copy, and 

recruiting new Editorial Committee members). Qualities of candidates should include a broad familiarity 

with different botanical specializations and especially botanical education, excellent communication skills, 

and a strong commitment to the PSB.

Review of nominations will begin March 1, 2014. For the first stage of the review process, please submit 

a brief letter of nomination and a detailed vita of the nominated individual to Dr. Sean Graham, Search 

Committee Chair at the following email address:

The Committee may request additional information from candidates as the search process progresses. If 

you have questions or comments, please contact Dr. Graham.
–PSB Editor Search Committee

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Use of pollen to identify cattail 

(Typha spp., Typhaceae) taxa in 


Joy E. Marburger



Great Lakes Research and Education Cen-

ter, Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, 1100 

North Mineral Springs Road, Porter Indiana 


Author for correspondence (



Submitted 9 May, 2013.  

Accepted 9 September, 2013.

Acknowledgments: I wish to thank John Ervin, 

formerly with the Indiana Department of Natural 

Resources State Nature Preserves, and National 

Park Service volunteers Joel Cook, Alan Culbertson, 

Emma Dlutkowski, David Hamilla, and John 

Wasse, for their assistance in pollen collection and 



Cattail (Typha spp.) hybridization in the U.S. 

has resulted in their large-scale proliferation in 

wetlands. Even though recent DNA fingerprinting 

methods have been developed to identify the 

taxa, the cost and time to identify them using 

microsatellite analysis has restricted widespread 

application of the technique. Pollen morphology 

can be used as a tool to identify cattail hybrids 

and the putative parents since the pollen forms 

are distinct for the species and hybrids. Monads 

are singular pollen shed during anthesis by T. 

angustifolia;  T. latifolia sheds pollen in tetrads, 

which are units of four pollen. 

Pollen from a hybrid plant can also have 

combinations of dyads and triads, in addition 

to monads and tetrads.  This paper describes 

a  microscopic technique based on presence or 

absence of various pollen types in each of 70 plants 

sampled in northern Indiana. Only one plant 

(1.4%) had typical T. latifolia tetrad pollen. Typha 

angustifolia monad pollen type was much more 

prevalent, representing 34.3% of the samples. Mixed 

pollen types predominated, occurring in 64.3% of 

the samples. This cost-effective method could be 

used by restoration managers to determine if Typha 

populations contain native T. latifolia, which is at 

risk of being extirpated due to hybridization.
KeywordsTypha latifoliaT. angustifoliaT. ×glauca

cattail, hybrids, pollen


Cattails (Typha spp.) are reed-like wetland 

graminoids that have undergone a massive invasion 

of North American wetlands over the past 80 years. 

Historically, cattails coexisted with other native 

wetland species, but recently have begun to form 

aggressive monocultures, with severe impacts to 

biodiversity, particularly in the Great Lakes region.  

Ecologists have hypothesized that T. angustifolia L. 

was introduced from Europe along the east coast 

in the mid-1800s (

Galatowitsch et al., 1999; Grace 

and Harrison, 1986).

  The superior competitive 

ability of Typha in North American wetlands has 

been attributed to hybridization between T. latifolia 

L. and T. angustifolia, with resulting plants showing 

hybrid vigor (Smith, 1967; Stuckey and Salamon, 

1987). Typha hybrids in the Upper Midwest have 

developed from interbreeding of Typha latifolia

broad-leaf cattail, and Typha angustifolia, narrow-

leaf cattail, as indicated by molecular genetic 

analysis (Marburger et al., 2005; Travis et al., 2010, 

2011) and evidence of synchronous flowering of the 

two species (Ball and Freeland, 2013).  The hybrid, 

referred to as T. ×glauca Godr., is highly variable 

in its morphology depending on its location, and 

thus difficult to identify.  Its invasive properties 

stem from its capacity for rapid clonal spread and 

biomass production, which allows it to readily 

supplant other native wetland species. Genetic 

analyses have so far identified invasive stands of T. 

×glauca in at least six Great Lakes National Parks 

(Travis et al., 2010 and unpublished data), which 

has raised serious resource management concerns 

among wetland managers whose goal is to preserve 

native plant biodiversity. 

Uncertainties exist in identifying Typha species 

and hybrids based on gross morphological features, 

such as leaf width, gap between male and female 

inflorescences, plant height, and stem diameter 

(Snow et al., 2010). However, pollen morphology 

has been identified as a tool to identify cattail hybrids 

and the putative parents (Smith, 1967; Dugle and 

Copps, 1972; Finkelstein, 2003).  Although highly 

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore (IDNL), other 

areas along roads near the national park in Porter 

County, two sites in Elkhart County, and sites in 

Lime Lake and Pokagon State Park. The latter two 

are part of the Indiana Department of Natural 

Resources State Nature Preserves. Collection sites 

in IDNL were located in the Cowles Bog Unit and 

in the Great Marsh Restoration Area near the town 

of Beverly Shores. Collections were done from June 

13 to 29 in 2008, 2009, and 2010. 

Pollen from individual plants was collected 

during anthesis. Pollen was shaken from male 

inflorescences into plastic Ziploc bags labeled by 

collector, GPS coordinates, site, and date. Care 

was taken to prevent any cross-contamination in 

collecting pollen from one plant to another. Bags 

were stored in a cooler and transported to a –20°C 

freezer until analysis could be conducted. Pollen 

from each bag was removed using the tip of a small 

paint brush and placed on a microscope slide.  The 

acetocarmine pollen staining method was used 

(Ruzin, 1999). A drop of 1% acetocarmine solution 

was placed on the pollen, which was then covered 

with a glass coverslip. After 2-3 minutes in the 

stain the pollen grain cytoplasm became pale pink, 

and the nucleus became a darker pink. Pollen was 

evaluated using 4X, 10X, and 40X power with a 

Figure 1. Map showing Typha pollen collection sites (yellow points) in northern Indiana counties 

(Porter, Elkhart, and Steuben; map insert). Light purple polygons are urban areas. 

specific, the use of molecular analyses based on 

microsatellite signatures to identify cattail taxa is 

somewhat costly and time consuming. Therefore, 

simple and inexpensive methods are needed to 

assist managers in identifying whether hybrids, 

the invasive T. angustifolia, or the native T. latifolia 

are present in a population. Smith (1967) and 

Finkelstein (2003) indicated that pollen grains 

of  T. latifolia occur in tetrads, while those of T. 

angustifolia occur as monads (Fig. 2 a, d).  They 

noted that hybrids show a combination of these as 

well as other types including dyads, triads, tetrads, 

and abnormal tetrads (Fig. 2 b, c, e, f, g, h). Here 

I describe a simple method to identify the species 

and hybrids based on a rapid assessment of mature 

pollen grains at anthesis.


 A scope of procedure (SOP) for pollen collection 

was developed through consultation with the USGS 

National Wetlands Research Center in Lafayette, 

Louisiana (B. Middleton, USGS National Wetlands 

Research Center, personal communication). With 

the assistance of volunteers, I collected pollen 

from 70 different plants in wetlands in Porter, 

Elkhart, and Steuben counties of Indiana (Fig. 

1; latitude= 41.61 to 41.72; longitude = –84.90 to 

–87.15 decimal degrees).  Sites were located in 

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

compound light microscope. The pollen dispersed 

when the coverslip was placed on the sample. A 

digital camera attached to a compound microscope 

was used to photograph the pollen (Fig. 2, a-h). 

Prior to pollen removal from each bag, the brush 

was cleaned with 70% alcohol and distilled water 

to prevent cross-contamination. Each sample was 

analyzed three times to confirm the presence or 

absence of pollen types. Three slides per samples 

were evaluated using a light microscope at 400X 

magnification for the presence of monad, dyad, 

triad, abnormal tetrad, and normal tetrad pollen. 

Presence (1) or absence (0) of the pollen types 

was recorded during visual scanning of each slide. 

Photographs were taken with a digital camera 

mounted on the microscope. Final images were 

modified by lightening them using Microsoft™ 

Powerpoint Picture Tools Corrections. Descriptive 

statistical analysis (SAS version 9.3.1, 2011) was 

conducted to determine the distribution of the 

various pollen combinations per sample.


Tables 1 and Figure 3 show the results of the 70 

cattail plants evaluated for presence or absence of 

the various pollen types.  A binary code was used 

to show presence (1) or absence (0) of the various 

pollen types in a sample, rather than counting 

the numbers of each type, to facilitate use of the 

method by resource managers conducting wetland 

restoration. The sequence of pollen distribution 

described for each sample was monad, dyad, 

triad, tetrad, and abnormal tetrads. Several types 

of abnormal tetrads were observed: linear and 

butterfly shaped (Fig. 2, e-g). Hybrids included 

any mixtures of pollen type from a single plant 

(Fig. 2, a-h).  Note that only one plant (1.4% of 

samples) had typical T. latifolia tetrad pollen. Typha 

angustifolia pollen type (monad only) was much 

more prevalent, representing 34.3% of the samples. 

These could also reflect backcrossed generations to 

T. angustifolia, but previous work using molecular 

methods indicated that plants in IDNL (Travis et 

al., 2010) were first-generation hybrids. Hybrid 

pollen types occurred in 64.3% of the samples. Two 

samples (2.9%) had both normal and abnormal 

tetrads in each sample, which were included in the 

hybrid category to avoid labeling them as pure T. 

latifolia, identified here as having normal tetrads 


Pollen morphological analysis may be useful 

for determining cattail taxa in a site undergoing 

restoration, since T. latifolia is becoming rarer due 

to hybridization and dominance of hybrid taxa 

in the Midwest. Both molecular identification 

(Travis et al., 2010) and pollen analysis (Marburger, 

unpublished data) at IDNL, particularly in the 

Cowles Bog Wetland Complex, support the 

evidence that first-generation hybrid cattail was 

the dominant taxon at this site in 2008 when pollen 

was first sampled. This information was conveyed 

to managers who then developed a plan to remove 

the cattail from the bog using glyphosate herbicide 

and an overland vehicle that applied the herbicide 

to the site in 2010.  Restoration currently consists 

of herbicide suppression of any new cattail plants 

emerging from seed or rhizomes, reliance on the 

native plant seed bank, and intensive planting of 

species such as Carex spp. that do not persist in the 

seed bank, as well as planting rare species. 

Figure 2. Typha pollen types: A = monad; B = dyad; C = triad (arrow); D = tetrad; E, F, G = abnormal 

Tetrad; H = hybrid sample with both monad and tetrad pollen. Bar in A = 25 µm; bar in H = 40 µm.

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

Pollen analysis using a compound microscope 

is a simple and cost-effective method that can be 

done quickly to evaluate the presence of cattail 

hybrids or parent species. DNA microsatellite 

preparation and analysis cost approximately $20 

per sample, with existing equipment and excluding 

staff training (S. Travis, personal communication). 

Pollen analysis costs would be approximately $1.00 

a sample, excluding a one-time purchase of a 

compound microscope and staff training. Thus the 

cost savings would be 20 times less using the pollen 

analysis method. A field microscope kit is being 

developed to evaluate cattail taxa on site during 

the flowering period.  This would reduce the time 

necessary to process samples in the laboratory and 

hasten a decision to remove cattail populations for 

restoration purposes.


Ball, D. and J.R. Freeland.  2013. Synchronous 

flowering times and asymmetrical hybridization 

in  Typha latifolia and T. angustifolia in 

northeastern North America.  Aquatic Botany 


Dugle, J.R. and T.P. Copps.  1972.  Pollen 

characteristics of Manitoba cattails.  The 

Canadian Field-Naturalist 86:33-40.

Finkelstein, S.  2003.  Identifying pollen grains of 

Typha latifoliaTypha angustifolia, and Typha × 

glauca.  Canadian Journal of Botany 81:985-990.

Galatowitsch, S.M., N.O. Anderson, and P.A. 

Ascher 1999.  Invasiveness in wetland plants of 

temperate North America:  Wetlands 19:733-


Grace, J.B. and J.S. Harrison.  1986.  The biology 

of Canadian weeds.  73.  Typha latifolia L., 

Typha angustifolia L. and Typha 


glauca  Godr.  

Canadian Journal of Plant Sciences 66:361-379.

Marburger, J., S. Travis, and S. Windels.  2005.  

Cattail sleuths use forensic science to better 

understand spread of an invasive species. 


National Park Service Natural Resource Year 

in Review – 2005, Department of Interior, 

National Park Service, Denver, CO. 2 pp.

Ruzin, S.E.   1999.  Plant microtechnique and 

microscopy.  Oxford University Press, Oxford, 

New York. 322 p.

SAS (Statistical Analysis System). 2011.  SAS 

Institute Inc., SAS® 9.3 Second Edition. Cary, 


Smith, S.G.  1967.  Typha: its taxonomy and the 

ecological significance of hybrids.  Archiv für 

Hydrobiologie Beihefte 27:129-138.

Snow, A. A., S. E. Travis, R. Wildová, T. Fér, P. 

M. Sweeney, J. E. Marburger, S. Windels, B. 

Kubátová, and D. E. Goldberg. 2010. Species-

specific SSR markers for studies of hybrid cattails 

(Typha latifolia × T. angustifolia, Typhaceae) in 

North America. American Journal of Botany 


Stuckey, R.L. and D.P. Salamon.  1987.   Typha 

angustifolia in North America: a foreigner 

masquerading as a native (Abstract). American 

Journal of Botany 74:757.

Travis, S.E., J.E. Marburger, S. Windels, and 

B.Kubátová. 2010. Clonal diversity and 

hybridization dynamics of invasive cattail 

(Typhaceae) stands in the Great Lakes Region 

of North America.  Journal of Ecology 98:7-16.

Travis, S. E., J.E. Marburger, S. Windels, and B. 

Kubátová. 2011. Clonal structure of invasive 

cattail (Typhaceae) stands in the Upper 

Midwest Region of North America. Wetlands 


Wilcox, D.A., S.I. Apfelbaum, and R.D. Hiebert. 

1985. Cattail invasion of sedge meadows 

following hydrologic disturbance in the Cowles 

Bog Wetland Complex, Indiana Dunes National 

Lakeshore. Wetlands 4:115-128.

Figure 3. Percentage of Typha  pollen types (monad, 

dyad, triad, tetrad, abnormal tetrad) from 70 plants.

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Book Reviews

Developmental and Structural

Forensic Botany: A Practical Guide ...............................................................................178

Economic Botany

The Hunter-Gatherer Within: Health and the Natural Human Diet ................................179


The Kingdom of Fungi ...................................................................................................180


Manual of Montana Vascular Plants ...............................................................................181

Wildflowers & Grasses of Virginia’s Coastal Plain ........................................................181 

Wildflowers of the Mountain West .................................................................................182

development and structural

Forensic Botany: A Practical Guide

David W. Hall and Jason H. Byrd (eds.)

2012. ISBN-13: 978-0-470-66123-9

Paperback, US$79.95. 195 pp. 

Wiley-Blackwell, Hoboken, New Jersey, USA

This is not a “how to” guide for becoming a 

forensic botanist, in part because there is no formal 

certification and no standards for training or 

expertise exist. It is, however, part of the Essentials 

of Forensic Science series sponsored by the Forensic 

Science Society, and it does provide an interesting 

introduction to all phases of applying botanical 

expertise to a crime scene. It is quickly apparent 

that no one person will be competent to consult in 

all relevant areas, but the editors brought together 

experts in each area to provide an overview of how 

knowledge in that area is useful and essential in an 

The first two chapters give a general overview of 

basic botany and its application under a variety 

of legal definitions. They, along with Chapter 4 on 

“Expert Evidence,” provide essential background 

for understanding the detailed explanations for 

evidence collection and analysis presented in 

Chapter 3. The next five chapters, which comprise 

half the book, will be of most interest to teaching 

botanists. Chapter 5 (“Use and Guidelines for Plant 

DNA Analysis in Forensics”) is a general overview 

of molecular biology techniques and presents 

several case studies using different techniques. 

Chapters 6, 7, and 8 focus on various applications 

of anatomical data. In addition to a primer on 

microscopy, Chapter 6 provides guidelines for 

making reference collections and preparing and 

documenting specimens. Chapter 7 details the 

famous Lindbergh case, while Chapter 8 focuses on 

palynology, pollen, and spores—presenting basic 

palynology and collecting, storing, and preparing 

samples, as well as several case studies. The focus of 

Chapter 9 is algal evidence, and seven case studies 

are presented. The final chapter contains nine case 

studies that use botanical evidence to place people 

or objects at the scene of a crime and six case 

studies that use botanical evidence to determine 

time of death.
Who will use this book? It’s too technical for a non-

majors botany elective, although a course of that 

title would probably draw students. For that cohort, 

I’d consider upgrading the exercises in Glenco 

Science’s Forensic Botany Investigations (New York 

Botanical Garden, 2007). I’m considering renaming 

our Plant Anatomy course (which seldom “makes” 

given the small number of biology students in our 

department following the botany emphasis track) 

to Forensic Botany and using this as the primary 

text supplemented by a traditional plant anatomy 

text. For the instructor, it provides plenty of ideas 

that could be incorporated as individual activities 

in a variety of botany or biology labs.

Literature Cited

New York Botanical Garden. 2007. Forensic 

Botany Investigations. Glenco Science, McGraw-

Hill, Columbus, Ohio, USA.

–Marshall D. Sundberg, Department of Biology, Em-

poria State University, Emporia, Kansas, USA

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

Economic Botany

The Hunter-Gatherer Within: 

Health and the Natural Human Diet

Kerry G. Brock and George M. Diggs Jr.

2013. ISBN-13: 978-1889878-40-9

Paperback, US$19.95. xi + 260 pp. 

Botanical Research Institute of Texas Press, 

Fort Worth, Texas, USA 

Put simply, this book is a must-take course for 

anyone who eats. Having heard from my older 

son about the concepts of the “caveman diet” (aka: 

“natural” diet, ancestral diet, evolutionary diet, 

paleo diet, Paleolithic diet, primal diet, Neanderthal 

diet, anti-inflammatory diet, etc.) and having 

read some of Mark Sisson’s work on the “Primal 

Blueprint,” I basically had a good idea of what this 

small, well-prepared volume would contain. But 

I was ready to read and review the volume to see 

how the information was presented and how it 

compared to what I had already heard and read. 

Wow, am I glad to have read this book! First, the 

authors allude to the courses that they teach and the 

material in the book, to which my reaction was: this 

book is a course on the topic and each chapter is a 

lecture. My bias as a retired professor who taught 

for many years may get in the way of objectivity, but 

I loved the presentation. There is an adage about 

telling students what you are going to tell them, 

then telling them, and then telling them what you 

told them. Well, triple redundancy probably has 

a place in education (as well as national security, 

etc.), and this book does repeat a lot of information 

(just as a professor would refer back to information 

presented in previous lectures). Although, once in 

a while, the redundancy may be more distracting 

then useful, overall it is effective—especially in view 

of how much fascinating information is provided. 
Like good teachers, the authors include many 

insets that provide “Overviews,” “Key Concepts,” 

and 19 or so “Success Stories.” The latter describe 

real people who have benefited from changing their 

diets; these add a certain level “proof” that the 

book’s basic message is on track. The readability of 

the book is enhanced by numerous photographs 

and diagrams, all of which are useful in making 

each lecture—that is, chapter—work. Similarly, the 

addition of one or more appropriate quotes at the 

beginning of each chapter adds interest for readers. 

The authors do an outstanding job of presenting 

information for possible lay readers who  may 

have a limited or nonexistent science background. 

They gently explain everything one needs to 

know about nutritional factors including proteins, 

carbohydrates, and lipids, and they do it in such a 

way that it is not “obnoxious” for readers who do 

have a science background. My wife, who is, like me, 

a scientist, thought the book was fairly technical in 

places for a lay reader, but not too much so. Finally, 

there are short (or sometimes long) footnotes 

providing additional detailed information that 

enhance the book’s content without interrupting 

the flow of the main text.
Enough about why this is an enjoyable book to 

read (or an enjoyable course to take). What about 

“the message”? As I mentioned at the start of this 

review, I knew something about this type of diet 

before picking up the book. But I was taken aback 

by how well the authors develop the case against the 

“standard American diet” and against conventional 

wisdom in respect to what is good and what is 

bad for us to eat. In fact, as a scientist, I cringed 

at their rather scathing criticism of science and 

scientists in Appendix 1 (“Why Do the Experts 

Often Get It Wrong?”); however, I am prepared to 

accept that the overall premise of this appendix is 

sound and that some of the data presented both 

support that premise and make me, as a scientist, 

blush with a bit of shame. A list of the section titles 

for this appendix may be enough to whet one’s 

appetite to read the book: “Measuring the Wrong 

Thing,” “Confounding Variables,” “Data Cleansings 

Including the ‘File Drawer’ Problem,” “Small Study 

Size,” “The Numbers Problem: Small Effect Sizes,” 

“Juggling the Numbers,” “Cherry-Picking Data 

and Other Intellectual Dishonesty,” “Being Paid To 

Get It Wrong—Scientific Prostitutes and Conflicts 

of Interest,” and “Bias for Other Reasons.” No 

matter how a professional scientist might react to 

this exposé, the main point—viz., that a healthy 

dose of skepticism can be critically important—is 

certainly a concept both scientists and lay readers 

can embrace. And, one hopes no reader will 

read Appendix 1 and believe that all research is 

inaccurate, fatally flawed, and/or corrupted by 

outside influences! After reading this book, I was 

convinced that getting away from the standard 

American diet is absolutely logical and, as the 

authors point out, a relatively simple, “nothing to 

lose” proposition. Cutting back on sugars, starches, 

all forms of artificial sweeteners, and additives is 

not new advice. The argument against eating gluten 

even if you are not technically gluten-intolerant and 

the logic behind eating more meat and animal fats 

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

is proffered by many “caveman diet” proponents, 

but this wonderful little book/course builds the 

case so well that I and my wife were convinced 

that the standard American diet is not good and 

have begun moving toward a more natural diet. 

As a lover of pasta (etc., etc., etc.), my change of 

heart comes only after a convincing and enjoyable 

“course” contained in a great little book that is a 

must-read for anyone who eats, that is, everyone. 
–Russell L. Chapman, Professor Emeritus and 

Founding Dean, School of the Coast and Environ-

ment, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, 

Louisiana, USA


The Kingdom of Fungi

Jens J. Petersen

2013. ISBN-13: 978-0-691-15754-2

Cloth, US$29.95. 265 pp.

Princeton University Press, Princeton, New 

Jersey, USA

Faced with the alarming pace of environmental 

destruction and the increasing disconnect between 

science and the general public, a number of natural 

scientists are directing their attention to the non-

specialist, making the case for the importance, 

value, and beauty of the organisms they study. The 

Kingdom of Fungi, a visually spectacular book by 

Danish mycologist Jens Petersen, is an example 

of this welcome trend. The book is quite sparing 

with text—no more than a couple of sentences 

per page on average—while giving center stage 

to the author’s (and colleagues’) impressive color 

photographs. By highlighting basic features of 

fungal structure, development, and function, many 

of these images distinguish themselves from those 

chosen for mere aesthetic appeal by authors of large-

format nature books destined for the non-scientific 

coffee table. The photos are so effective that even 

the experienced mycologist will linger over them, 

finding many that stimulate thinking about some 

aspect of fungal biology and many more that would 

be very useful in the classroom. As one would 

expect, there are plenty of excellent images of fruit 

bodies in their natural habitat, including quite a few 

that the average mycologist is not likely to have seen 

before. Particularly impressive here is the depth of 

field achieved with close-up photography, and the 

contrast compression that conserves detail even 

where very white fruit bodies are shown against 

very dark backgrounds. Also featured are a number 

of excellent images of those less photogenic but all-

important fungal structures such as mycorrhizae, 

hyphal cords, and rhizomorphs. There are 

pedagogically useful diagrams where convergent 

and divergent structures are mapped onto 

biosystematic pie charts serving as highly pruned 

phylogenetic trees. The diversity of lamellar (gill) 

morphology is beautifully and usefully compared 

among mushrooms, likewise the pore structures 

found among polypores. Clouds of ejected spores 

are shown hovering about several fruit bodies. 

And great use is made of high-magnification 

dissecting microscope images where, for example, 

one can distinguish basidiospores and asci in 

context on the surfaces of their respective fruit 

bodies. Others show the surfaces of developing 

fruit bodies with sufficient magnification to 

reveal their fundamentally hyphal construction. 

Compound microscope images are fewer but also 

used effectively, for example, the micrographs of 

the different kinds of “heterobasidia” that are so 

challenging to prepare from their gelatinous fruit 

Only a couple of possible inaccuracies are apparent, 

and they are minor. A transmission electron 

microscopy (TEM) image purported to depict 

“vacuoles” filled with enzymes for digesting food 

seems instead to show vesicles of the Spitzenkörper 

complex involved in wall synthesis at the hyphal 

apex. In an image of the lichen Cladonia ramulosa

structures located at the tips of podetia that are 

identified as fruit bodies appear instead to be the 

presumed gametangia (pycnidia/spermogonia).
While ostensibly addressing the uninitiated, the 

sparse text is in fact fairly dense in information, and 

the reader will need some basic understanding of 

biology to fully make sense of it. At times the text 

may presume much of the amateur audience; for 

example, the term “agaric” is used from the outset 

without explanation. In the absence of clarification, 

even biology students will mistakenly assume that 

“sexual spores” means gametes, and that “sterile 

hyphae” must refer to those not contaminated 

with bacteria. On the other hand, the text repeats 

its explanation of the very basic terms “hyphae” 

and “mycelium” on pages 6 and 12 in an apparent 

oversight. There are some spelling mistakes (e.g., 

mosaik, significent, inclucing, chaterelle) that 

the editors could have easily located with word 

processing software.
Considering finally the modest price of $29.95 

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

in hardcover, it is not easy to see how any 

mycologist, broadly interested botanist, naturalist, 

or mushroom enthusiast could resist owning this 

magnificently illustrated work.
–William B. Sanders, Department of Biological 

Sciences, Florida Gulf Coast University, Fort Myers, 

Florida, USA


Manual of Montana Vascular 


Peter Lesica

2012. ISBN-13: 978-1889878-39-3

Paperback, US$50.00. viii + 771 pp.

Botanical Research Institute of Texas Press, 

Fort Worth, Texas, USA

The history of Montana floristics is given a chapter 

of its own. The story begins with the Lewis & Clark 

expedition, and “ends” with the present volume. 

Properly, as Peter Lesica would be the first to 

acknowledge, the next chapter really begins with 

the publication of this book. Heretofore, there has 

been nothing so detailed and extensive for the state. 

Its predecessor was Robert Dorn’s Vascular Plants 

of Montana (Dorn, 1984), which is still available as 

a new copy (though no longer in print, I believe) 

for $125–$537, with used copies a great deal less. 

In that work, Dorn acknowledges the assistance of 

Peter Lesica.
The present manual is a very different work, with full 

keys, ample descriptions, a great many illustrations, 

and a Montana distribution map for nearly every 

recognized species. The range statements use the 

official post office abbreviations for the states and 

provinces of the United States and Canada; these 

are given on p. 40, alphabetized by the abbreviation, 

which is very helpful.
The arrangement of families is by the Cronquist 

system, with some families reconfigured to 

reflect modern phylogenetic thinking; hence, 

Chenopodiaceae are merged with Amaranthaceae, 

and traditional genera of Scrophulariaceae are 

mostly segregated into Phrymaceae, Plantagin-

aceae, and Orobanchaceae, such that there are 

now only four species of scrophs in the Montana 

flora. It appears that some of the plates were 

prepared before this drastic segregation occurred, 

so that the fine drawing of Penstemon ellipticus 

(Plantaginaceae, p. 438) ends up in Plate 81 (p. 454) 

with members of the Orobanchaceae. It’s clearly 

indicated on p. 438 where the figure is to be found, 

so there’s no real harm done. The genera within 

each family, and the species within each genus, are 

given alphabetically—a most useful arrangement. I 

tried some of the keys, and they worked.
The nomenclatural apparatus is minimized. 

Synonyms appear to be given only in cases where 

they have appeared in other recent treatments for 

Montana. Therefore, the basionyms of binomials 

with parenthetical authors are not routinely 

given. When type specimens came originally from 

today’s Montana, the author notes it—a welcome 

nod to history. The author is entirely aware of 

the taxonomic decisions taken in Flora of North 

America, but has avoided the temptation of merely 

copying that masterly work; his treatment of 

Cirsium canovirens (p. 515) is an excellent example 

of how close attention to local circumstances can 

lend new insights.
The work ends with an ample index. The Literature 

Cited is not given just before the index, as one 

might expect, but occupies pp. 19–32. The entries 

are alphabetical by author, but are preceded by a 

number in parentheses, and it is these numbers 

which are used throughout the book. This is a useful 

device, not unique to this work, which deserves to 

be more widely copied.

Literature Cited

Dorn, R. D. 1984. Vascular Plants of Montana

Mountain West Publishing, Missoula, Montana, 


–Neil A. Harriman, Biology Department, University 

of Wisconsin–Oshkosh, Oshkosh, Wisconsin, USA 

Wildflowers & Grasses of Virginia’s 

Coastal Plain

Helen Hamilton and Gustavus Hall

2013. ISBN-13: 978-1-889878-41-6

Flex-binding, US$24.95. 276 pp. 

Botanical Research Institute of Texas Press, 

Fort Worth, Texas, USA 

Wildflowers & Grasses of Virginia’s Coastal Plain 

begins with the Acknowledgments, which are 

more usually put at the end of a volume. It’s easy 

to see why this arrangement was adopted, though, 

because there is a formidable array of botanical and 

editorial expertise at play here, and it shows. The 

full-color photos and text are models of how books 

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

Wildflowers of the Mountain West

Richard M. Anderson, JayDee Gunnell, and 

Jerry L. Goodspeed

2012. ISBN-13: 978-0-87421-895-4 

Spiralbound, US$26.95. 302 pp. 

University Press of Colorado, Boulder, Colo-
rado, USA

This is a guide to 130 of the most common 

wildflowers in the Mountain West. Like most 

guidebooks for novices, it is organized by flower 

color. It includes the typical information for a 

species, such as common name, habitat, elevation, 

bloom time, distribution, and plant size. Although 

the authors do not state this in the introduction, all 

of the wildflowers covered are native plants. With 

nonnative plants becoming an increasing problem, 

this should be stated. The book presents pictures of 

basic flower shapes that are too simplified. Although 

it is admittedly challenging to communicate exactly 

what a plant in the Compositae family is, they do 

not shed any light on the basic flower structure of 

a composite species. The reader is left not knowing 

that there are composites with all disc flowers or 

all ray flowers. It is not clear that each ray/disc is 

actually a flower and hence the name “composite.” 

Also overlooked is the difference between radial 

and bilateral symmetry, a characteristic of a flower 

that is easy to pick up on once the terminology is 

introduced, and which aids tremendously with 

identification. While the book does include a nice 

glossary in the back that includes the more common 

botanical terms, many of these terms (sessile, 

petiole) would be well-served with a diagram or 

other visual representation as they are frequently 

used in the descriptions of the plants represented 

in the guide book. 
The authors did their readers many favors 

by including pictures of the leaves as well as 

photographs of the flowers’ habitat. Too often, 

wildflower enthusiasts key in on the flowers, only 

to realize that they do not recognize the foliage of 

common plants without the flowers. The majority 

of the pictures in the guidebook are very good. 

However, some are out of focus, which presents 

difficulty for the reader and undermines the 

professionalism of the authors. Also of great help to 

the reader is the inclusion of the growth form of the 

plant under the heading “Form/Foliage.” Each plant 

is accompanied by a range distribution map, which, 

though helpful, would have provided more ease in 

identifying location if the states were labeled.

of this sort should be done.
The book is divided into sections according to the 

predominant color of the flower, with a tan sector 

for the grasses and grass-like plants at the end of 

the volume. How to distinguish grasses from sedges 

and rushes is not mentioned, but a few sedges are 

included, along with a few Juncaceae. Each species 

is presented with a common name first, always 

felicitously chosen, followed by its Latin binomial, 

without author(s). In many instances, the common 

names are explained, and in some instances the 

Latin names are translated or otherwise explained. 

The photographs were chosen with the greatest 

care, and one can only marvel at how the structure 

of flowers is shown. Every photograph is credited, 

and one concludes that Virginia harbors a great 

many skilled photographers. For each species, 

there is a full-page treatment; the names follow the 

treatments in the just-published Flora of Virginia 

(Weakley et al., 2012).
Another useful feature of this book is a prominent 

indication of whether the species is native or 

introduced, and occasionally, in bright red, whether 

it is introduced and invasive. Poisonous species are 

also mentioned, with prominent warnings. The text 

states that Water Hemlock, Cicuta maculata L., is so 

exceptionally poisonous that merely a bite can be 

fatal. This is not a book with footnotes or endnotes, 

so I don’t know the origin of this claim, but it may 

well have come from the website of the Centers 

for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). On 

page 220, there is a statement made in passing that 

Urtica dioica L., Stinging Nettle, is introduced from 

Europe. However, it is generally agreed that there 

are two varieties in the United States—one native, 

the other introduced.
An amenity of the book is the occasional 

mention that a given species is the host plant for 

the caterpillar of this or that butterfly or moth. 

Wildflower enthusiasts are often interested in such 

associations, and I feel sure these tidbits will be 

welcome. Brief biographies of both authors, with 

color photos, are given at the end of the volume, 

after a well-done index. 

Literature Cited

Weakley, A. S., J. C. Ludwig, and J. F. Townsend. 

2012.  Flora of Virginia. Botanical Research 

Institute of Texas Press, Fort Worth, Texas, 


– Neil A. Harriman, Biology Department, Universi-

ty of Wisconsin–Oshkosh, Oshkosh, Wisconsin, USA

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Plant Science Bulletin 59(4) 2013

The size and binding make this book an extremely 

portable, field-ready companion, and interesting 

vignettes often provide occasional humor. Under 

whorled buckwheat look-alikes, the authors 

wish the readers, “Good luck! There are over 220 

different buckwheats (Eriogonum spp.) in North 

America.” Unfortunately, look-alikes were not as 

distinct as they could have been. In the case of 

Canada Goldenrod, Baby Goldenrod is listed as a 

look-alike. While the astute wildflower enthusiast 

would certainly recognize it as a goldenrod, other 

species of goldenrod look much more similar to 

Canada Goldenrod than Baby Goldenrod does. 

And in yet other cases, such as arrowleaf groundsel, 

the authors state that other groundsel species are 

look-alikes when really arrowleaf groundsel is 

the only plant with the distinctive triangular leaf; 

therefore, this might have been a more appropriate 

commentary for the “look-alike” category. Seep 

monkeyflower, a yellow monkeyflower, is thought 

to look similar to Lewis’s monkeyflower, a purple 

monkeyflower, when another yellow monkeyflower, 

muskflower (Mimulus moschatus), occurs in the 

area covered. The book also includes a wildflower 

quick search key that is based on flower color and a 

few other characteristics. 
While this book will be appealing to a new 

wildflower enthusiast, it could be a source of 

frustration for the more sophisticated botanist. 

Instead, expert botanists might refer to Plants of 

the Rocky Mountains (Kershaw et al., 1998), a local 

favorite covering many more wildflowers, trees, 

shrubs, and even a few mosses and lichens. It also 

offers characteristics for plant families and is the 

best bang for your buck if you are serious about 

wildflower identification. While not spiralbound, it 

is compact and field-worthy.

Literature Cited

Kershaw, L. J., J. Pojar, and P. Alaback.  1998.  

Plants of the Rocky Mountains. Lone Pine 

Publishing, Vancouver, British Columbia, 


–Heidi Anderson, Yellowstone Center for Resources, 

Yellowstone National Park, Mammoth, Wyoming, 


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Books Received

[Catalogue of the]14th International Exhibition of Botanical Art & Illustration. 

Lugene B. Bruni and Carolina L. Roy. 2013. ISBN-13: 978-0-913196-86-1 

(Paperback US$28.00) 108 pp. Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, Carnegie 

Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA.

Colorado Rocky Mountain Wildflowers—App for Apple and Android. Al 

Schneider and Whitney Tilt. 2012. (US$9.99). High Country Apps, http://www.

Flora of the Four Corners Region, Vascular Plants of the San Juan River 

Drainage: Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah. Kenneth D. Heil, Steve 

L. O’Kane Jr., Linda Mary Reeves, and Arnold Clifford. 2013. ISBN-13: 978-1-

930723-84-9 (Cloth US$72.00) 1098 pp. Missouri Botanical Garden Press, St. Louis, 

Missouri, USA. 

Illustrated Genera of Smut Fungi, 3rd Edition. Kálmán Vánky. 2013. ISBN-13: 

978-0-89054-428-0 (Cloth $139.00) 238 pp. American Phytopathological Society, St. 

Paul, Minnesota, USA.

Mineral Nutrition of Rice. Nand Kumar Fageria. 2013. ISBN-13: 978-1-4665-5806-

9 (Cloth US$149.95) 552 pp. CRC Press, Taylor and Francis Group, Boca Raton, 

Florida, USA. 

The Plant Hunters: The Adventures of the World’s Greatest Botanical 

Explorers. Carolyn Fry. 2013. ISBN-13: 978-0-226-09331-4 (Cloth US$30.00) 63 

pp. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, Illinois, USA.

Steyermark`s Flora of Missouri, Volume 3, Dicots (Part 2): Fabaceae (Second 

Part) through Zygophyllaceae. George Yatskievych. 2013. ISBN-13: 978-0-915-

27913-5 (Cloth US$65.00). Missouri Botanical Garden Press, St. Louis, Missouri, 


Woody Plants of Kentucky and Tennessee: The Complete Winter Guide to Their 

Identification and Use. Ronald L. Jones and B. Eugene Wofford. 2013. ISBN-

13: 978-0-8131-4250-0 (Cloth US$45.00) 143 pp. University Press of Kentucky, 

Lexington, Kentucky, USA.

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Plant Science 


                                                                               Winter 2013 Volume 59 Number 4

Legacy Society honorees and 

Northeast region members celebrate at 

the New York Botanical Garden. 

Is the Legacy Society for you -  

see page 160

Support your Society!

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The Boise Center 

July 26-30, 2014



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