Scott's Botanical Links--August 2005


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Past links:

August 31, 2005 - Atlas of Canada
The Atlas of Canada site has a wealth of online maps of Canada and the larger world, with political, relief and outline maps, as a beginning. Data maps include parameters of Canadian life, social characteristics, historical info, climatic and ecological data and more, with over twenty different types of maps. This site is also a nice reference for people from the States who think that Labrador and Newfoundland are two provinces, which they are not (as has been pointed out to me today), as well as the creation of Nunavut. All maps are in JPG and PDF format, with many educational resources as well. Site is by Natural Resources Canada/Ressources naturelles Canada. (****) -SR
August 30, 2005 - Interesting Botanical Places of Newfoundland and Labrador
Newfoundland and Labrador, a northeast maritime province of Canada, is nicely illustrated in this image collection that accompanies the Digital Flora of Newfoundland and Labrador. Numerous locales are visited in Eastern Newfoundland (12), Central Newfoundland (12), Western Newfoundland (23), and Labrador (7). Images are 600 x 800 pixels and frequently show breathtaking scenery and vegetation. Represented are ecological communities ranging in disturbance and water abundance, from rocky to arctic or coastal, and even some urban scenery. Site by the provincial museum of Newfoundland and Labrador (***1/2). -SR
August 29, 2005 - Digital Flora of Newfoundland and Labrador Vascular Plants
The Digital Flora of Newfoundland and Labrador Vascular Plants accompanies the over 1300 vascular plant species listed in the Annotated Checklist of the Vascular Plants of Newfoundland and Labrador (available as a WordPerfect or Word document). Digital images are available by browsing family links on Ferns and Fern Allies, Gymnosperms, Dicots [= Eudicots], and Monocots. The search engine may be the quickest link to specific plants. Images are attractive and coverage is encyclopedically complete. Site by Susan J. Meades, Stuart G. Hay, and Luc Brouillet, hosted by the provincial museum of Newfoundland and Labrador. (***1/2) -SR
August 26, 2005 - Bromeliad Society International
The Bromeliad Society International provides opportunities for bromeliad enthusiasts to share data, seeds, register cultivars, share research and gardening tips, publish, and generally enjoy and promote bromeliads. There is considerable information on this website concerning bromeliads, which are members of the family Bromeliaceae, including pineapples and Spanish moss. Over 50 of the ~56 bromeliad genera are shown on this site as high quality images. The plants are objects of fascination for many plant lovers. (***1/2) -SR
August 25, 2005 - Miami Tree Puzzle
Miami, Florida, is an ideal tropical setting for observing plant diversity, but which of these trees is native, introduced, or invasive is part of the puzzle. This site is as rich as the plantings, with nearly 500 species listed by their scientific names, common names and family. Habit, flower, and fruit images are provided as available, with an online PDF booklet of the most common 110 species listings, including a dichotomous key. This site proves useful for examining tropical biodiversity. Site is by David Lee, Department of Biological Sciences, Florida International University, Miami. (***1/2) -SR
August 24, 2005 - Evergreen Native Plant Database: Lesson Plans
This Evergreen Native Plant Database was developed principally to provide information on native Canadian wildflowers, but species overlap significantly extends its useful range! Particularly noteworthy on the site are lesson plans for K-12 students on native plants, as found outside in nature. Lessons include full class plans, including comments for instructors, quizzes, and work sheets (in PDF and web format), that appear to be easy to adapt for many purposes and are listed by grade. This site also provides extensive information about Canadian vegetation, making it an exceptional site for studying native plants in nature. (****) -SR
August 23, 2005 - Some Biogeographers, Evolutionists and Ecologists: Chrono-Biographical Sketches
This is a biographical site that accompanies websites on "Early Classics in Biogeography, Distribution and Diversity Studies" that I have featured in 2001-03. This website provides information on several hundred noted biogeographers. Notably absent are the most famous (e.g., Darwin, Cuvier, to name two), for whom links are readily awailable elsewhere on the web. The information for this site was compiled by Charles H. Smith, Ph.D., Joshua Woleben, and Carubie Rodgers, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green. (***1/2) -SR
August 22, 2005 - Conservation Plant Identification Tools and Guides from USDA
The USDA has developed two pocket ID guides for plant conservation -- one emphasizing herbaceous plants and the other emphasizing trees and shrubs -- both available online in PDF (free) or in print (paid), with links to a vegetative guide to selected native grasses (in PDF). A list of herbaceous plants causes an information pop-up to appear, giving terse but practical descriptions of the plants as well as an occasional image. These could provide important for instruction and as field guides. Site by United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service. (****) -SR
August 19, 2005 - Ecological Site Information System (ESIS)
The Ecological Site Information System (ESIS) site contains useful information from two databases, the Ecological Site Description (ESD) and the Ecological Site Inventory (ESI). In the ESD, all major and minor ecosystems are cataloged. Information on each ESI includes general info, physiographic features, climate features, water features, soil features, plant communities, site interpretations, supporting information and a complete report. The ESD contains the current status of each studied site. Site by United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service. (***1/2) -SR
August 18, 2005 - Grass Genera of Texas
The principal feature of this site is an illustrated online key and glossary to the genera of the Poaceae, or Grass Family, of the State of Texas (though many genera overlap with surrounding states). To sample the wealth of grasses in Texas, a detailed checklist is also available. At each step of the key, there are ideally two choices in a dichotomous key, and the illustrations in this one aid in making good decisions each time. Site by TAMU, mainly a tool for graduate student education in beginning agrostology. (***1/2) -SR
August 17, 2005 - Digital Flora of Texas
The Digital Flora of Texas project represents a collaboration of over 40 Texas institutions that curate plant collections. The site has links to herbarium specimen data, vascular plant images, bibliographic references, and checklists of Texas vascular plants. Eventually, identification keys and descriptions are anticipated to be included with the flora for about 1000 of the species. Eventually 300,000 specimen records will be included, with image links for 2,000 Texas species. The search engine allows searches by county, herbarium, cultivation status and name. Constructed as a TexasFlora site. (***1/2) -SR
August 16, 2005 - Crop Nutrient Tool
One key to agricultural sustainability is to match nutrient loss with nutrient replacement. This is a constant problem since most crops are annuals that die back rather than perennials that store nutrients. This USDA site lists the quantity of nutrients lost (on average) in pounds per bushel at selected moisture levels. The amount of nutrients removed in pounds per acre is also calculated per numbers of bushels yielded. The site also makes recommendations about amounts of mineral nutrient needed to replace the nutrient in a living plant(s). (***1/2) -SR
August 15, 2005 - International Rice Genome Sequencing Project (IRGSP)
Announced in Nature, publication of "The map-based sequence of the rice genome" (Volume 436 Number 7052, pp 793-800) marks the completion of the second genome, Oryza sativa, or rice--the most important of plant crops. All sequences are available for public use as soon as they are released, thus the sequence becomes progressively better as sequences are checked for accuracy, annotated and updated. This is primarily a research site, with numerous tools for studying rice and other cereals that share organizational elements--wheat and corn are among these. -SR
August 12, 2005 - Plant Amnesty
PlantAmnesty’s mission, since 1987, is "to end the senseless torture and mutilation of trees and shrubs." This site dramatizes bad pruning and exists to promote awareness and respect for plants and encourage proper pruning techniques. To support this mission they provide a free referral/reference service, which include a nasty letter service; letters are sent on request. Plant care information is available on the site--free under most links except for Goods and Services. The "View The Madness Gallery" is well worth the visit, but you may want to avoid it if you can't stand to see innocent sap shed. (***1/2) -SR
August 11, 2005 - EFB530 Plant Physiology
The EFB530 Plant Physiology website accompanies a comprehensive course by the same name at SUNY-Syracuse, NY. For an overview of advanced plant physiology or a refresher, this site would be a suitable starting point. Topics range from traditional cell physiology, to water relations, to mineral nutrition, to plant behavior, plant function and hormone actions, with modern treatments of transformation and plant defense. Not all lectures have web summaries yet, but those that are completed are well-written and organized, with appropriate materials and also external weblinks. Site and course by Dr. Larry Smart, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry. (***) -SR
August 10, 2005 - National Plant Germplasm System (NPGS)
The National Plant Germplasm System (NPGS) is as program that has the goal of enriching US germplasm reserves for crop plants. Crop quality relies on high quality genetic strains with great uniformity, whereas NPGS has the goal of capturing plant diversity with potentially useful genetic stocks that enrich disease resistance, biochemical products, resistance to environmental stress and diversity of genes--preserving them to retain the possibility that they will be available in the future. Germplasm accessions are preserved, evaluated, characterized and distributed by NPGS through various germplasm facilities around the US. Materials in this collection are available for research through this site and characterized online in a related database. This important effort is the basis of increasing diversity in seeds that can be used for GMOs or traditional plant breeding. -SR
August 9, 2005 - Mark Rieger's Fruit Crops
Mark Rieger's Fruit Crops site is one of the most complete fruit sites that I have seen. Currently, the site has 40 fruits featured with plans to expand this online encyclopedia by about 30 more. Fruits currently have posted information about their taxonomy, origin, history of cultivation, folklore, medicinal properties, non-food usage, production statistics, botanical description, general culture, harvest, post-harvest handling, and contribution to diet. His associated HORT 3020 introductory course on fruit crops has more information and quizzes, too, and features well organized summaries. Site by Mark Rieger, University of Georgia. (***1/2) -SR
August 8, 2005 - Society for the Preservation of Natural History Collections (SPNHC)
The Society for the Preservation of Natural History Collections is a multidisciplinary organization of individuals interested in the development and preservation of natural history collections. Such collections include specimens, supporting materials, labels, library resources, field data, audiovisual materials and similar archives. For plant biologists, a primary source of information is often found in an herbarium, which is the repository of collected plant specimens. Increasing attention has focused on the usefulness of these irreplaceable resources. This site links to sites explaining why such collections need to be protected. (***1/2) -SR
August 5, 2005 - Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
The Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center hosts a wealth of online resources, essays and information about many of the inhabitants of the Northern prairie. Fact sheets cover the essentials of prairie ecology; biological resources include over 100 essays on specific topics from plants to animals; other resources are listed by taxon, geography and type. These and other prairies represent intricate and fertile ecosystems that dominated much of North America at the start of colonization and account for much of our crop successes. (****) -SR
August 4, 2005 - Canada Centre for Remote Sensing
The Canada Centre for Remote Sensing has online resources that include satellite resources, imagery, climatic, geodetic surveys, an atlas and geographical data on Canada, as provided by Natural Resources Canada. QuickLinks include information on scientific publications, tutorials on remote sensing, an online tour of Canada from space, a newsletter, selected images, geospatial standards, ground station services, RADARSAT and other topics. The explanations on how to use spectral data should provide useful to viewers everywhere. (****) -SR
August 3, 2005 - Plant Evolution: Adaptation or Historical Accident?
This essay by Professor Karl Niklas (Cornell University) is part of BioForum, which consists of lectures sponsored by California Academy of Sciences, in which scientists share the results of their research with high school biology teachers. In this essay, computer simulations are used to support how problems of form influence shapes, forms and sizes of plants and their influence on what plants do in terms of light gathering, water uptake, biomechanical support, and their reproduce. As a biomechanically oriented researcher, Prof. Niklas carefully balances paradigms and insight with basic mathematical considerations of living organisms, presenting a pursuasive explanation of the evolution of plants. The BioForum website is a partnership between Access Excellence and the California Academy of Sciences. (****) -SR
August 2, 2005 - Google Scholar
Google Scholar crawls through the "scholarly literature, including peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, preprints, abstracts and technical reports from all broad areas of research," with cooperation of publishers and librarians. Using capital resources provided by issuing stock, Google is now accumulating print and online data to create ultimate databases; this one focuses on articles, preprint repositories and university and scholarly sites to gather article information. Google Scholar offers sophisticated search options, preference setting and citation information for articles. The site is currently in BETA testing -- a phase during which a software resource that is currently under development to be tried by users. (***1/2) -SR
August 1, 2005 - TreeLinks
This site concerns everything you may have wanted to know about trees, including urban forestry, growing trees, keeping trees healthy, flash cards of trees, as well as external links. It is also home for the WoodNotes Quarterly - this quater's current sampling of articles includes Return of the American Elm, A European Perspective: Urban Forests and Trees, The Man Who Planted Trees, Lessons From the Forest. Great Summer Reads includes book reviews of books center on trees, includes fiction and children's books in addition to science. There is a lot of information on this dynamic site by TreeLink. (****) -SR

Past, past links (by date):

2006: January
2005: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
2003: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
2002: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
2001: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
2000: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
1999: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
1998: January*, February*, March*, April*, May*, June*, July, August, September, October, November, December   (*Leigh's links)
1997: January, February, March, April, May, June, September*, October*, November*, December*    (*Leigh's links)
1996: February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
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