ISSN 1188-603X

No. 128 February 24, 1996 Victoria, B.C.
Dr. A. Ceska, P.O.Box 8546, Victoria, B.C. Canada V8W 3S2


Prof. Warren Herb Wagner, Jr. Ferns of Hawaii. Tuesday, March 5, 1996, 7:00 p.m. 220 Kane Hall, The University of Washington, Seattle. - Admission complimentary.

The Second Annual Melinda F. Denton Memorial Lecture is sponsored by the Department of Botany, University of Washington and the Center for Urban Horticulture, and the Melinda Denton Memorial Fund.


From: Frank Lomer, Honourary Research Associate, UBC Herbarium, Vancouver, B.C. c/o (

The following is an update of "Introduced Bog Plants Around Vancouver", BEN # 104 - July 2, 1995.

Azolla caroliniana Willd.
I have now seen this aquatic plant from numerous places, especially around the extensive cranberry fields on the northeast corner of Lulu Island, Richmond. This species can be invasive. One large slough in Richmond (6m x 0.5km) was completely covered by a mat 1cm thick. The plants themselves were in turn covered by aphids. Also collected in a ditch at 10480 59th Ave., Delta. (Lomer # 95-222) I have seen A. caroliniana sold in a few garden centers and this may be the source of our introductions.
Cyperus erythrorhizos Muhl.
I mentioned that the introduced population at Richland Farms, 19611 Westminster Highway, Richmond, may be extirpated, but it is still abundant in cranberry fields about 1km west of where I found the original population.
Cyperus retrorsus Chapm.
A single plant, 1 meter tall, was growing along the edge of a hog fuel track skirting the perimeter of a large cranberry field. C. retrorsus is native to the eastern U.S. and perhaps has not been collected in Canada before. Collected from Richland Farms, Richmond on September 28, 1995. (Lomer # 95-197)
Juncus canadensis Gay
I have found two new populations of this species. It grows at Burnaby Lake and along the edge of a tidal marsh, Pitt River, Port Coquitlam, 1km north of Pitt River Bridge. (Lomer # 95-201)
Juncus pelocarpus Meyer
Since I wrote the original article, I have found two new populations of this species. It is abundant and widespread in Burns Bog, Delta and in a gravel pit at 200th St.and 36th Ave. in Langley.
Muhlenbergia uniflora (Muhl.) Fern.
This distinctive clumped grass with a diffuse purplish panicle is native to N.E. U.S. and S.E. Canada. Collected in a weedy plot in a cranberry field north of the Richmond Freeway about 1km east of No.8 Road, Richland Farms, Lulu Island, Richmond. Despite the name, the plants I saw mostly had 2 florets. More than 50 clumps were seen in a field with Cyperus erythrorhizos (abundant), Hypericum boreale, and Lindernia anagallidea (few). (Lomer # 95-195, 95-241)
Scirpus atrovirens var. georgianus (Harper) Fern.
Collected on June 23, 1995 on boggy shore of Burnaby Lake, 4km. east of Vancouver (Lomer # 95-131), growing with Juncus canadensis and Glyceria canadensis. A few days after I collected this plant, the area was covered with gravel and this population seems to be extirpated.


Pielou, C.E. 1994.
A naturalist's guide to the Arctic. University of Chicago Press, Chicago. 327 p. ISBN 0-226-66814-2 :softcover: Price: CND $29.95

When we visited Dr. Chris Pielou in their new home on Denman Island quite a few years ago, she told us that her book on "The world of northern evergreens" had just appeared and that she was writing another book on natural history. She would not reveal what it was about, but our good mutual friend told us (about two hours later) that the book was to be on the Holocene history of North America ("After the Ice Age" - published in 1991).

Chris Pielou was an eminent mathematical ecologist and she has tried all her life to compress Nature into the bold print of matrix algebra. In her books such as "Mathematical ecology" (two editions), "The interpretation of ecological data...", "Population and community ecology" - just to name a few, you easily find sections which you cannot read unless you have a degree in mathematics. You had to wonder, how the author saw the forest, ecosystem, ecology, or a dandelion. Has she ever noticed them?

Open the "Naturalist's guide to the Arctic" and you will know the answer. No bold matrix algebra, but a nice description on how the Arctic works. You will learn about astronomy, climate, geology, the ocean, plants and animals and all the interactions and causal relationships that you have to know in order to understand this particular biome. Everything is written in the nice, clear style and all the stories are fascinating. I was looking for the name of an artist who drew the nice pictures (ranging from the Arctic landscapes, through plants, birds, and mammals to the Cariboo Warble Fly) before I noticed that the book was "illustrated with more than 400 of the author's drawings and maps."

Congratulation, Chris!

P.S. - Richard, can you tell us what is Chris working on now?


Mackenzie, Ian. 1995.
Ancient landscapes of British Columbia. Lone Pine Publishing, Edmonton. 128 p. ISBN 1-55105-043-9. softcover: CND $24.95

"British Columbia is a beautiful place," told us the clerk of the Canadian Embassy in Prague in 1969 after she stamped the Canadian visa into our Czech passports. We understood what she meant when we arrived to British Columbia few days later. Ian Mackenzie's book is an extraordinary document of this extraordinary province. It is the result of a six-year pilgrimage: Ian Mackenzie has journeyed on foot and horseback, by canoe and kayak, by air, river and ocean, to the most remote corners of every region.

The photographs (we are told that they were selected from about 30,000 images) are overwhelming. I have not been able to read the text - whenever I opened the book I had to look at the photographs and I slipped into daydreaming about those sacred places. From a short biography we learn that the author has a Master degree in linguistics and speaks and read eleven languages, in addition to his gift to communicate through his photographs.

The book is a "pictorial geography of British Columbia." The biogeoclimatic map at the end of the book will give you not only the distribution of our biogeoclimatic zones, but also refers to pictures taken in the respective zones. In the text, paragraphs printed in bold italics summarize the characteristics of each biogeoclimatic zone. Great idea ! By the way, when Prof. Vladimir Krajina introduced the term "biogeoclimatic zone" even many professional people laughed to the seemingly useless tongue twister he had created. Twenty or thirty years later this term is a part of a picture book directed to a very wide audience and nobody worries that the average reader would not understand the concept of BIOGEOCLIMATIC zones.

The Lone Pine Publishing did an excellent job and produced a remarkable publication. The Lone Pine Publishing have their offices in Edmonton - Lone Pine Publishing's phone number is 1-800-661-9017.


Turner, Nancy J. 1995.
Food plants of coastal First Peoples. Royal British Columbia Museum Handbook, UBC Press & Royal B.C. Museum, Vancouver-Victoria. 164 p. ISBN 0-7748-0533-1. softcover: Price: CND $24.95

This is the second edition of Nancy Turner's 1975 handbook on ethnobotany of British Columbia. The original edition has been expanded and updated, with more colour photographs and with the most recent additional literature references.


For the April 1st issue of BEN, I would like to compile a collection of known and unknown biological laws and postulates.

For example:

Please, send me you favourites:

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