Scott's Botanical Links--February 2001


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February 28, 2001 - The Art of Botanical Illustration
This is an online version of the University of Delaware's Special exhibit on botanical illustration that spans early printed books to the present. The goal of botanical art has remained the same: scientific accuracy. Although some illustrations are quite beautiful, the principal purpose is to plants with the detail required to identify it. Featured topics include "Herbals,"Travel & Exploration," "Scientific Botany," "Women Artists," "Seed Catalogs," and "Modern Botanicals." Many items in the collection are illustrated. Site by University of Delaware Library (dates February 8-June 8, 2001). (****) -SR
February 27, 2001 - Les Dunes Atlantiques (The Atlantic Dunes)
This site discusses the origin, life, erosion and ecology of dunes in French, Italian and English. Dunes on the Atlantic and the Mediterranean are featured, with numerous illustrations interspersed with the narrative. Many of the main French pages have been translated into English, but the depth of the site has not. Atlantic dune flora images are excellent. Scanned images are accompanied by French text providing considerable information about each plant. This site presents an interesting view of sand dunes and an excellent flora site. Site by Steven Piel. (****) -SR
February 26, 2001 - National Library for the Environment (NLE)
The National Library for the Environment is part of the National Council for Science and the Environment and a major source of environmental information for the government. Included at the site are 833 Congressional Research Service Reports on a diverse variety of topics. This is a nice environmental portal, with links to jobs, conferences, and references such as treaties abd governmental reports relating to political and economic matters. Site by NCSE. (****) -SR
February 23, 2001 - Welcome to Floralis
If you ever wanted to know what a Swedish winter was like, this site presents it in images and poetry. The images are novel in mood and impact. The poetry evokes some of the mood of a low sun-angle winter! It is surprising all of the plants that are growing at this time of year to a careful observer. Plants seem to be scanned, not photographed, resulting in images that have a distinctly different appearance. This is a interesting plant site, and maybe one that is appropriate to the lengthening days. Site by Eva Ekeblad, Göteborg, Sweden. (***1/2) -SR
February 22, 2001 - Welcome to Floralis
Individual pages include Endemics of Mauritius and Mondrain Nature Reserve, Scences of Mauritius, picture gallery and articles. One has to go through several screens to get to the plants. The endemics page is mainly a list of underlined "pseudolinks" but the pictures of the island are nice. Site by Floralis. (***) -SR
February 21, 2001 - National Park Service Integrated Pest Management Manual
With increase concern for the chemical effects of pesticides and decreasing budgets, IPM is an attractive concept for controlling infestation through using biological/ecological controls. Pages are provided on specific pests, including ants, aphids, Dutch elm disease, exotic weeds, fire ants, fleas, gypsy moth, leafy spurge, mites, mosquitoes, pests of museums, rats, silverfish, spiders & scorpions, thistles, ticks, turfgrass insects, turfgrass weeds, weeds of developed & historic sites, and yellowjackets. A specific strategy is typically needed for each pest, so greater knowledge of biological systems is required to make IPM a success. The NPS-IPM Manual was originally organized by Colorado State University. (***1/2) -SR
February 20, 2001 - Vegetable MD Online
Vegetable MD Online was developed to provide access to the many Vegetable Disease Fact Sheets produced over the years by Media Services at Cornell. Diseases are listed by crop and accompanied by a photo gallery, news articles & disease alerts, a commercial vegetable guideline's diagnostic key, a glossary of plant pathology terms, vegetable IPM links, other vegetable links and a plant disease clinic. Site by the Department of Plant Pathology, Cornell University and the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station. (***1/2) -SR
February 19, 2001 - History of Opium
Although not strictly a plant site, these pages on opium present a history of the growth and collection of the latex of Papaver somniferum, the opium poppy. This site describes the history of opium production in four major regions: Turkey, India, Europe and China. The site presents this history objectively and with sparing but well chosen illustrations. Certainly among the most important economic plants, opium poppy is the source of morphine, which is still among the most important legitimate drugs in the suppression of pain. (***) -SR
February 16, 2001 - The Mysterious Venus' Flytrap
The Mysterious Venus' Flytrap is a one page child's site that describes how the trap is triggered, how flies are digested, with some information on how to obtain and grow them. The site has a few images from the BSA's teaching image collection on the Venus' flytrap. This site is just for fun, though there are links to other sites available. The observation that the traps reject stones and non-biological objects (over several hours) suggests some experiments that grade school students would be more than willing to conduct. Site by Kim Hiser, Botanical Society of America. (***) -SR
February 15, 2001 - Carl Albert Purpus, Plant Collector in Western America
Carl Albert Purpus, trained as a German pharmacist, spend a considerable part of his life collecting plants in the Pacific Northwest US and Canada. This site features his writings and letters, translated into English, along with plant lists, images and a detailed bibliography. Locations are sometimes illustrated, but always accompanied with documentation of the collections. This is a well-organized historical site that is worth visiting. By Barbara Ertter and Tom Schweich, University and Jepson Herbaria, Electronic Publications, UC-Berkeley. (****) -SR
February 14, 2001 - Synthetic Theory of Evolution: An Introduction to Late 20th Century Evolutionary Concepts and Theories
This site attempts to integrate the scientific findings of the 20th century into an integrated concept of evolutionary mechanisms. Topics include the Hardy-Weinburg model, recombination, mutation, small population effects, non-random mating, natural selection, gene flow and micro & macro evolution. Each is well-presented and illustrated, with succinct narratives and complemented by a "self-pronouncing" glossary. Although plants do not figure prominently at the site, still this is an excellent resource and model tutorial site. Site by Dennis O'Neil, Ph.D., Palomar College, San Marcos, California. (****) -SR
February 13, 2001 - Wetlands of the Central and Southern California Coast and Coastal Watersheds
Subtitled "A methodology for their classification and description," this report is a comprehensive assessment of California wetlands. Sparsely illustrated, the volume is encyclopedic in its description of the many different kinds of wetland environments occurring in this diverse state. This is not casual reading. To navigate the site, look for small links at the top of most pages. The work that went into producing this volume (even digitally) is enormous. It looks like some parts are still being added. Report sponsored in part by EPA. (***1/2) -SR
February 12, 2001 - GrainGenes: A Database for Small Grains and Sugarcane
GrainGenes is a compilation of molecular and phenotypic information on wheat, barley, oats, rye, and sugarcane. The site provides links on mapping, germplasm, pathology, taxonomy, probes, publications, molecular probes, employment, calendar, as well as a gateway to browse grain genes, search the genomes or submit data. Although principally a research site, there are excellent links and a lot of data. Sponsored by the USDA-ARS Plant Genome Research Program and by scientists providing the information. (***1/2) -SR
February 9, 2001 - Forest Fungi of New Zealand
The last and the largest of the Hidden Forest sites that I have featured, this site is extremely well illustrated and has activities for school children to university students. "Fungi things" contains about 10 pages of interesting (sometimes icky) facts. Pages are very well organized, attractive and informative throughout. The breadth of the available information is quite remarkable ... and the size of the site is not really evident until one looks at the site map. Pages for 54 families are linked from there! Site by (****) -SR
February 8, 2001 - California Exotic Pest Plant Council
Native habitats are increasingly being replaced with exotic plants. With their introduction, native species of birds, insects, fish and other wildlife are often lost. The tamarisk, Arundo reed, pampas grass and Eucalyptus are special problems in California, as they are well-suited and aggressive in mild, dry climates. The CEPPC sponsors meetings and encourages research to contain and reverse the threat, with action committees for some threats. Links to other state and federal entities are particularly worthwhile. Site by CEPPC. (***) -SR
February 7, 2001 - Truffle.Org
This site "is aimed to promote research on truffle and ectomycorrhizae." Computer-guided identification of 18 different truffle species currently, with illustrations and molecular biology protocols (currently in Italian only). TuberKey provides a morphological character key for ascocarps and mycorrhizae are coded in a DELTA database. The site also features a bulletin board. Parts of the site are not yet complete, but it provides some data on truffles. (***) -SR
February 6, 2001 - Central Washington Native Plants
Split into four areas--"plants," "river," "land" and "root,"--this site presents a well-illustrated and narrated virtual tour of the region, which ranges from near-desert steppes to alpine zones. Numerous plant and terrain pictures are available. This is a nice integration of ecology, natural history, plant identification and ethnobotany specifially focusing on the rain-shadowed center of Washington state. Sometimes the display of the page is imperfect (I viewed an index site correctly only after two reloads using Netscape 4.7), but the content is well worth it. Created and maintained by Thayne Tuason. (***1/2) -SR
February 5, 2001 - Hidden Forest: Lichens
Lichens, as hopefully any beginning botany student would know, are really a symbiotic relationship between algal and fungal species. Nonetheless, lichen species names, families and other artificial taxonomic units on these have been named and are represented here. This site is categorized by topic and family with numerous illustrations and descriptions available--an excellent and encyclopedic introductory site. Information about lichen biology and identification are also presented here. Site by the Hidden Forest. (****) -SR
February 2, 2001 - Forest Slime Molds of New Zealand
Slime molds are eukaryotic organisms that live like animals--traveling to capture their food--and reproduce like plants--producing spores. Traditionally, these have been included in botany classes, though their relationship is tenuous. This site presents numerous images of cellular and plasmodial slime molds of five families, as well as information on their novel mode of reproduction, explanations of evolutionary relationships, references, links, and tips for photographers. This is part of the large Hidden Forest site. (****) -SR
February 1, 2001 - Hidden Forest: Bryophytes
The Hidden Forest is an encyclopedic New Zealand site that has large entries for bryophytes, lichen, fungi and slime molds that start with very general pages that delve to the level of families. The images on the site are excellent in quality and accompanied by high quality narration. Glossary entries (orange) are linked with floating windows reducing some page loading. This is the only site I have seen with such a complete and well-illustrated description of bryophyte reproduction, and which illustrates a member of each family. Many of these are found around the world. If your Internet connection to New Zealand is not good, this site is well worth visiting at an off time. Site by The Hidden Forest. (****) -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
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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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