Scott's Botanical Links--January 1999


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Past links:

January 29, 1999 - Visual Models of Morphogenesis
This site discusses and demonstrates computer models for growth and morphogenesis using concepts of reaction-diffusion, diffusion-limited growth, cellular automaton, and L-systems. The basis of the models are clearly expressed and demonstrated using high bandwidth QuickTime movies (1-5 MBytes length). The ideas are complicated, but well presented for those wanting to consider models for plant and animal form and growth. By Przemyslaw Prusinkiewicz, Mark Hammel, and Radomir Mech, Department of Computer Science, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada (****) -SR This link was nominated by Randy Mitchell (
January 28, 1999 - Botany in the News!
"Botany in the News!" is gleaned from recent press releases on issues relating to plant biology and environmental news relating to plants. The site is updated as news articles become available, usually a couple of times per week. This is a service of the Botanical Society of America ( by Scott Russell. (As you may know, I don't rate my own sites.) -SR
January 27, 1999 - Plants In Motion
Since I last reviewed this site (Feb 17, 1997), Dr. Hangarter has considerably expanded the number of QuickTime movies of plant growth, to include: Arabidopsis movies (seed germination in darkness, elongation in light, phototropism, gravitropism, nutation movement, and rosette growth), floral opening (daylily, moon flower, morning glory and tiger jaw), sleep movements of velvet leaf & bean, and phototropism in tomato & bean. As before this requires the QT attachment and the files are large, but worthwhile. Site by Roger Hangarter and lab, Indiana University. (****) -SR
January 26, 1999 - AgBioForum
AgBioForum is a quarterly on-line magazine publishing articles on the economics and management of agricultural biotechnology. Contributed papers focus on the impact of modern agribusiness practices, industry consolidation, chemicals and seeds, food processing and genetic engineering on farmers, crops and the food supply. Perspectives on intellectual property rights and consolidation of the seed industry are also discussed. Online subscriptions are free. Editor: Nicholas Kalaitzandonakes, Ph.D., University of Missouri, Columbia with the help of a carefully selected editorial board. (****) -SR
January 25, 1999 - Poisonous Plants of Nova Scotia
This cleverly constructed page leads to a database of the poisonous plants of Nova Scotia--a northeastern province of Canada. The beginning slide show is just plain fun...! There is a lot of good information on why plants are poisonous, red tides, castor beans, lupines, as well as plants that produce potent medicines--like digitalis from foxglove, and morphine from poppies. This site created and maintained by the Museum of Natural History of Nova Scotia. (****) -SR
January 22, 1999 - The English Physitian - 1652
"The English physitian: or an astrologo-physical discourse of the vulgar herbs of this nation," was originally written by Culpeper, Nicholas (1616-1654). The online digital edition contains the full text of this herbal, with detailed information on ailments that each herb is believed to treat. This is an interesting precursor to the modern herbalist movement; some of the applications are remarkably similar. This electronic version was prepared by Richard Siderits, M.D. and colleagues by keying from a copy at the Historical Medical Library, Yale University, adapted to HTML by Toby Appel. (***) -SR
January 21, 1999 - Leonhard Fuchs' Botanical, 1545
Medieval herbals were the very currency of early plant knowledge. This well-illustrated herbal, with 516 pages of plates (some colored), was published during the Renaissance more than 200 years before Linnaeus. A wide variety of medicinally-important plants are illustrated with generic names that are surprisingly modern. Published in 1545, the plants are identified in Latin and old German. Each page is indexed on the Table of Contents and links to *large* format scans of the pages--many up to 1 MB interlaced GIFs of excellent quality. Scanned by Richard Siderits, M.D., through the Yale University Medical Library. (****) -SR
January 20, 1999 - Plants Toxic to Animals
This site is designed as a guide for veterinary students in identifying common outdoor plants that are toxic to animals and as a companion to the University of Illinois Poisonous Plant Garden. About 50 plants are included in this guide, which includes descriptions & photographs, distributions & origins, conditions of poisoning, control and clinical signs. The site includes a database and lists of common and scientific names. The major shortcoming of the site is that indoor plants are not covered. Site maintained by University of Illinois, Veterinary Medicine Library. (***1/2) -SR
January 19, 1999 - Park Search: The Outdoors at Your Fingertips
The L.L. Bean site has a nice "Park Search" site that has links and information for 782 state parks, 163 national parks, 151 national forests, 297 national wildlife refuges, 98 Bureau of Land Management lands, and 2,000 photos of natural areas and wildlife. There is also a search engine. A very nicely constructed site with excellent pictures and a lot of information on outdoor destinations. Site by L.L. Bean. (****) -SR
January 15, 1999 - American Journal of Botany Online
AmJBot, the flagship journal of the Botanical Society of America went online at 7:45pm PST (sorry for the late link!). This site features hyperlinked and PDF versions of all articles of the hardcopy journal, and has lots of electronic features that the print version lacks. Currently the site is on a free trial basis (until April 2000), but the Society is considering continuing this indefinately, as an add-on value to the printed copy. This site is organized and maintained by HighWire Press, yours truly, electronic editor. -SR
January 14, 1999 - Infomine's Plant Genetics Resources Database
Enter the term 'plant genetics' to activate this. This link takes the user to Infomine's current list of plant genetics sites, which remains in flux. The site includes most if not all of the major gene and molecular databases. This is a great place to start for reseach and genome information on a very wide variety of plants and other organisms related to plants. The Plant Genetics Resources Database is constructed and maintained by Infomine. (****) -SR
January 13, 1999 - A Manual of California Vegetation
This site catalogs the vegetation types of the unique flora of California, that represents a move towards landscape-based management and away from single-species management plans. Pages include: an introduction, geography page, California vegetation series groups, vegetation classification and descriptions, key California vegetation types, photographs of representative series, book indices and additional contents and authors. Site by the California Native Plant Society, hosted at the UC-Davis Herbarium, Davis, CA. (****) -SR
January 12, 1999 - Atlas Florae Europaeae Database
The Atlas Florae Europaeae Database is part of a 10 year project to digitize distributions of plants in Europe. The atlas will be made available in 1999, but evaluation versions of the software are available today. The program allows generating distribution statistics, biogeographical analysis (combining data on climate, soils, biotopes, fauna), nature conservation and biodiversity analyses. Site and database by Raino Lampinen, Botanical Museum, Finnish Museum of Natural History, Helsinki University, Finland. (****) -SR
January 11, 1999 - North American Lichen Project
The North American Lichen Project site includes information on the special biology of lichens, a lichen sampler, a protrait gallery, ads for lichen books, database for ethnobotanical uses, and sites for interactions between lichens & the environment, animals and humans. The photography and construction of the pages is excellent; there is a lot of worthwhile information here. The only detraction are the numerous cookies; if you have you brower set to warn you of cookies, you will be pressing the cancel button a lot. A very nice site, by Sylvia Duran Sharnoff and Stephen Sharnoff. (****) -SR
January 8, 1999 - The Sweet Lure of Chocolate
This Exploratorium site chronicles the history, growth, collection and mystique of cacao, the rainforest tree that gives us chocolate. Although the Mayans traded cacao nuts as currency, the popularity of their chocolate drinks--which were mixed with chili peppers--did not catch on in Europe until the peppers were substituted with sugar. The process of making chocolate is described in detail, complete with RealVideo clips! This is followed by a detailed discussion of whether chocolate is healthy and the chemicals inside it. (Look at it soon; this may expire in a month!) Site by the Exploratorium, San Francisco. (****) -SR
January 7, 1999 - Hobbes' Internet Timeline
Hobbes' Internet Timeline is a one page history of the internet that starts with Sputnik and ends with the present. There are also useful statistics on the growth of the Internet, from ARPANET's 50 kps lines (15 nodes in 1971) to 19.5 million in July 1997 and nearly 3.7 million web *servers* at the end of 1998. A cryptic but nice chronicle of the growth of the information age. Site by Robert H'obbes' Zakon, Internet Evangelist at the The MITRE Corporation, hosted by the Internet Society. (****) -SR
January 6, 1999 - Rangeland Plant Communities of the West
This site is for a course in range management (RA M 382) at the School of Renewable Natural Resources at the University of Arizona. At the site, you can find Announcements, the Syllabus, Lecture Topic Outline, Lecture Slides, Lab Outline & Communities, Plant Mounts, Field Trips, Past Exams, Related Links, Feedback and a Chat Room. The is interesting, but it has a few flaws. The layout of the exams (with answers!) is excellent. The pictures are clearly slides (since the edge shows in some) and the image links are awkward for browsing (you must return to the image link home page between each image). Nonetheless, an interesting and an informative site to watch (***1/2) -SR
January 5, 1999 - Paleopalynology, Fossil Pollen, Spore, Algae Home Page
This page introduces the topic of paleopalynology--the study of fossil pollen, spores and single-celled algae. The site includes introductory pages on spores and pollen, dinoflagellates, a type image repository and links to sites & scientific organizations in this area. Pages are planned on preservation & processing of samples, age distribution, other palynomorphs, thermal maturity and palynofacies. This is a beginning site for this topic. A promising site, it is still under initial construction. Site by Andrew MacRae, Department of Geology and Geophysics, University of Calgary. (***) -SR
January 4, 1999 - The Biology Project
The Biology Project is an interactive online resource for biology students at the college and high school level. Problem sets are provided to sharpen student skills and each of the answers is linked to tutorials. Topics are treated comprehensively making this an excellent reference site. Though sets are largely aimed at animal biology, there are plant examples for some of the topics. Instruction sites currently include Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Mendelian Genetics, Chemicals and Human Health, Developmental Biology, Immunology and Molecular Biology. Site by The Biology Project, University of Arizona (****). -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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