Plant Science Bulletin archive
Issue: 1972 v18 No 3 Fall
PLANT SCIENCE BULLETIN
A Publication of the Botanical Society of America, Inc.
September 1972 Vol. 18 No. 3
Philosophical Separation of Botany and Zoology David H. Rembert, Jr. 22
Philosophical Separation of Botany and Zoology
David H. Rembert, Jr.
The student, before his first academic exposure to biology, has an understanding that plants are non-motile and for the most part green while animals are motile and food seekers. This initial impression, though naive, is closer to the actual picture in higher plant and animal biology than the continuing student is led to believe. In recent years biologists have made great strides in pursuit of a continuity of life. The freshman college student, with an academic requirement for laboratory science, more of-ten than not passes through a principles course in general biology. This may be satisfactory for curriculum requirements but it is most damaging to philosophy of biology. The actual philosophical separation of botanists and zoologists is a reality. A look at almost any biology department will reveal the accuracy of this observation.
First of all, looking at the animal as an organism (any vertebrate for convenience), we must conclude that a very important biological consideration involving individual survival (basic drive) concerns the ability of an animal to ingest food, digest it, and egest the non-digestible portion. This alimentation is a specialized form of heterotrophism but therein lies its significance in animal evolution. In order for an animal to participate in alimentation, motility must be involved. The kinds of locomotion and the accompanying symmetry that have evolved have been subjected to much study by zoologists in the past. If an adult animal is sessile and cannot move through the environment it must have some mechanism for moving the environment to or through itself. Sessiled animals are aquatic.
It may be argued that some fungi approach this alimentation with the production of extra-cellular enzymes. Alimentation here is defined to include ingesting food, digesting, and egesting the indigestible remains. This is obviously not a consistent feature of fungi. The so called carnivorous angiosperms plainly are not exceptions to this. Members of the plant kingdom have no such alimentation and therefore considerations of motility and symmetry in plants cannot be pursued with the same biological philosophy as in animals.
Ethological considerations are second only to alimentation in significance in organismic survival in zoology. Problems related to species recognition including such things as courtship dances, plumage display (optic); bird and frog calls (auditory); and chemical sensations (olfactory) are absent in the plant kingdom. Pheromones that have been demonstrated in "lower plants" are not ethology. This is not to ignore the plant-animal relation-ships in exotic methods of pollination, etc., but rather point out that it is the animal not the plant with the ethological involvement. Nastic movements, nutations, and tropic plant response should not be confused with ethology. At some future time an analogous situation may be demonstrated in plants but as of yet the evidence is not available. Recognizing analogous behavioral patterns in plants carries the decided possibility, expecially for zoologists, of applying animal characteristics, i.e., "behavior" to botanical philosophy and slipping dangerously close to teleological observation. The whole idea of animal behavior, from sex to the psyche, stirs within a few zoologists all sorts of ideas of investigation that have no counterpart in the plant kingdom, a few zealots not withstanding.
Very few zoologists appreciate the significance of plant morphology. Animal growth, considered determinate, enables the zoologist to observe the individual animal relative to his alimentation, motility, symmetry, and behavior. Plant morphology serves the botanist with an import equal to all the zoological considerations not relative to plants. A few volatile compounds may be lost and leaves dropped, but for the most part plants retain the products of their metabolism (not spent as energy in nervous activity, locomotion, temperature regulation, etc.) as deposition in secondary growth in the form of gums, resins, tars, essential oils, alkaloids, etc. The ac-cumulation of excess food reserves as indirect as well as direct products of the photosynthetic process, (carbohydrates, proteins, lipids) is reason enough for the position of plants as producers in the biotic community.
With reference to morphology, another point may be made concerning the plant body. The sporophyte generation of angiosperms opens the door for a renewed look at the concept of "individual" in the plant and animal kingdoms. The motile animal is an individual by almost any definition. He feeds as a unit and reproduces his kind with meiotic products produced in gonads. The importance of this is realized when we consider that somatic mutations in the animal kingdom are not of evolutionary significance. (With clonal concepts of plant biology currently invading vertebrate zoological thought, this picture may change.) Plants, on the other hand, present us with another circumstance. The indeterminate (in growth) sporophyte is in reality a collection of individuals. Each branch represents a growth region in terms of mitotic activity, cell enlargement, and differentiation. Each branch of the sporophyte also has meiotic sites (spore production) independent of other such sites. Further, genetic changes (DNA modifications, chromosomal aberrations, aneuploidy, polyploidy) that occur in a single branch may be passed on, through the developing gametophyte, to future sporophytes. These changes, if occuring in a hybrid, may result in a new species (allopolyploid). The angiosperm sporophyte should be considered a clone. It could be argued that all cells of an organism have a common genetic origin thus should be technically a clone. It may be argued that a consideration of the angiosperm sporophyte as a collection of individuals (a clone) is a "degree" rather than a "kind" of difference. While it is true that comparable situations can be found in lower animal phyla, the fact remains that this is a consistent feature of the higher plants and not of animals. There is a basic philosophic separation of the higher plants and animals here. Any genetic contribution the higher animal makes to future generations will come through gametic fusion. Animal gametes and plant gametophytes are not analogous. Animal gametes are meiotic products that function in syngamy to produce zygotes. Plant gametophytes are haploid plants developing from spores by mitosis and producing gametes by mitosis. The angiosperm megagametophyte is in fact an obligate parasite housed
for its entire existence within the tissues of the sporophyte (ovule). The microgametophytes (pollen grain) participates in parasitic activity as it delivers the sperm cells to the megagametophyte. There are several theories concerning the origin of the sporophyte and gametophyte generations, but the important point here is to appreciate the vast difference in the gametophyte and a gamete.
The angiosperm sporophyte, in addition to production of spores (ultimately gametophytes), has a significant potential in vegetative propagation. All sporophyte parts (whether roots, stems or leaves) in many species possess attributes of asexual reproduction. This clonal concept sustains the `Winesap' apple, the `Bartlett' pear, etc. The sporophyte branches are connected by a common vascular supply. It is not suggested here that what takes place in one meristematic area will not have an effect on another branch with a common vascular involvement. It could be argued, however, that plant organ association by hormonal interaction should not be compared with what may be construed as analogous situations in animal organ-circulation interaction. Transpiration and translocation have no true analogue in animals. While it may be true that the end served by the phloem is similar to a blood circulatory system, the means is not. While it is a generalization, we could say that zoologists tend to think in terms of the end in many comparative situations while botanists are more concerned with the means. For example, it may be true that plants and animals are living things and therefore both have the problem of securing an energy supply. When we look at the means, however, we see the large separation of autotrophy and heterotrophy.
Individual plants in an iris clone may be thought of as individuals until dug up to reveal that these "plants" are really attached to the same stem (rhizome). Would we consider an earthworm a clone'? We are able to make 2 from 1 without the intervention of sexual reproduction. Identical twins have the same genotype but we have no difficulty in considering them individuals. What if there is a physical connection as in `Siamese' twinning? But is a tree an "individual"? A single organism? There are literally thousands of meiotic sites (sporangia) that arise new each year on each branch. A Camellia japonica branch may be very easily grafted to a C. sasan qua bush. Is the result an individual organism? An individual placed in 2 different species at the same time? There are almost unlimited opportunities for further illustration of this concept in the plant kingdom. In looking for a comparable situation in the animal kingdom we are forced to explore colonial coelenterates or some equally primitive group. The major philosophical question here is not nutrition but rather the absence of alternation of generations in animals as developed in the long history of plant evolution.
This line of reasoning raises the question of life cycle patterns. The gametophyte generation in part can account for the survival of aneuploidy in the plant kingdom. The sporophyte generation in plants, with its success in asexual reproduction, gives to a species a tremendous potential in sustaining hybrids and subsequent possibilities for allopolyploidy (new species). The importance of understanding life cycle patterns may be illustrated with an example. Malaria is a disease that possibly kills 1 million people per year in the world today. The organism responsible has been placed in the genus Plasmodium, Phylum Protozoa. The life cycle pattern of this organism demonstrates a gametophyte generation. Plasmodium with its true alternation of generations must be considered a plant-like organism or, if not, then the only animal with a gametophyte. Perhaps if we were to start asking questions of Plasmodium as a plant or fungus we might get different answers.
If we could begin to understand that there is in fact a difference in the philosophy of studying plants and animals we might come to a better meeting of the minds in biology. We should not be lulled into thinking that plants and animals can be studied with similar philosophies because of apparent overlaps and transfers of knowledge from botany and zoology recently in cytogenetics, cell culture, and clonal manipulation. Plants and animals are literally kingdoms apart.
I would like to express my appreciation to my depart-mental colleagues and students for their interaction on the questions raised in this essay.
Harold St. John on
G. Neville Jones
At that time I was a professor of botany at Washington State College, in Pullman, Washington. Besides my teaching I was very busily collecting and studying the species that made up the flora of that state. A Mr. G. N. Jones either sent me some plants for identification or wrote with a botanical query, I have forgot-ten which. In any case, he made an impression on me. As there were very few people in the state interested in botany, I decided to look him up. There was a small railroad running from Seattle 40 miles south to a mine. Jones was employed at a way station, selling passenger tickets. He was a tall, slender young man, with a shock of black hair, and intense dark eyes. He made a good impression, so I invited him to join my party for a week's exploration of Mt. St. Helens, a 9,677-foot peak in the Cascade Mountains. The party also included my students R. T. Davison and C. S. English, Jr. My car also held food, tent, and camping equipment.
Today there is a paved road leaving the Pacific High-way 99 at Castle Rock, and following up the Toutle River valley to Spirit Lake. We drove in on August 1, 1925, and successfully made the 40-mile trip, but the road required a skilled driver. The gravel stretches in the valley were not bad, but midway the road for several miles climbed up one side, then down the other side of a mountain as a plank road. The planks were laid lengthwise, a single 12-inch, 12-foot plank for each wheel, nailed to cross pieces end and middle. The cross pieces rested on the forest floor and once had been firm. We found many of the nails loose or lost, and some tread planks warped up at the end. It was hard driving.
Spirit Lake is a clear, beautiful mountain lake at the north base of Mt. St. Helens. The mountain itself is a perfect volcanic cone, inactive at present, but built up by fairly recent eruptions. It is unique among the Washington volcanoes in having the surface formed by a layer of pumice 20-40 feet thick. As a result, all drainage sinks through the pumice and flows underground on older solid lavas. Hence, the tree line is very low, at about 2,500 feet, and the upper and middle slopes are mostly bare. The pumice is of rounded balls of all sizes, up to a foot in diameter. Climbing the peak is a very arduous task, as on
a sand hill, one loses half of each stride. Then, one must be alert, keeping watch upwards, to be ready to dodge every pumice boulder that comes bounding down the slope.
We made good collections and had fine times together on the mountain. Apparently Jones was inspired, for in September 1925 he quit his railroad job, and came to Pullman to register as a student. He had not attended high school, but in Manitoba had studied at a commercial school. He was allowed to register at Washington State College, but only in the Preparatory Department. He could take regular college courses, and get the credit if he passed them. He had to go to the Pullman High School, and pass their final exams in 5 or 6 subjects to make up his deficiency. One after another he passed these required high school classes, except English. He was proud of his ability to speak and write English, which he did well, and of his broad knowledge of English literature, so he asked, then pled repeatedly, to be excused from the English exam. The officials refused him. He did his college work well, and at last was ready to receive his B.S., having met all the requirements, except his entrance English. After a final plea, his pride broke, and he took and passed the required English. By that time I had accepted another professorship and moved to the University of Hawaii.
Jones worked each summer to earn money for his college expenses. In Pullman he boarded in an attic room and lived frugally. He arrived with and kept an old touring car which was useful to carry him and other students on botany trips. To be economical he never licensed the car; hence, on trips he would set out before dawn, and return after dark, lest in daylight some town con-stable should note the lack of a current license plate. He was older than the other students, but kept friendly relationships with them. He liked to provoke and enter into arguments, especially on social and economic subjects. I don't actually know that he had been a member of that radical labor group in Seattle, but he sympathized with and frequently raised the issues and arguments that were presented by the IWW.* Another favorite line of his was to quote ideas stated by Tom Paine which he thought would shock the present Americans.
He developed a wide interest in botany. Under my guidance he collected and studied the higher plants of Washington and Idaho. Under Dr. F. L Pickett he did the same for mosses and eventually wrote a small manual on the mosses of southeastern Washington. I published several taxonomic papers with Jones as joint author.
At that time the herbarium was in a big basement room in College Hall. Several of the advanced students were issued keys to it, so it became a meeting place for them, where they studied, argued, and had lively discussion well into the evenings. He was a regular in that group.
Except in the winter I used every weekend to make botanical exploring trips. I filled my car with students, always including Jones, and we had many an interesting collecting and camping trip. He was a keen collector and a good camper.
On one of my last years in Pullman, he consulted me about his father who was in poor health in Seattle. A "wonder doctor" there for a large sum said he could cure anything. For diagnosis he had a large black box, with dials, lights that flashed, bells that rang, etc. It was said to work by electronics. At that time, 1928 or 1929, the word "electronic" was a synonym of electric. Jones showed me a descriptive pamphlet on the box, and asked
`Inchr,str'icrl Workers of the World
me to give an opinion, to which I demurred. He pled with me, so finally I agreed to study it and give my opinion on its value. I found nothing convincing in the advertising tract, so gave a negative opinion. I never learned whether the father took the medical cure or not, but he died soon afterwards.
Jones said he grew up in western Canada, but gave few details, and never mentioned England, and almost never his family. He stayed on at Washington State College, and took his M.S., under Prof. Pickett. He then moved to Seattle, studied under Dr. T. C. Frye, and obtained his Ph.D. He was later on the staffs of the Arnold Arboretum and the University of Illinois.
Pr»)cssor G. 1Veuille iltmes, Curator of the Herbarium in the Department of Botany, University of Illinois, died in Champaign on June 25, 1970. The above notes by Dr. Harold St. John were contributed by him at the request of H4/limn L. Stern, Untversity of Maryland, following the recommendation of Dr. William A. Weber, University of Colorado, Dr. St_ John, formerly on the faculty of the Unir'erst(y of Hawaii, is now Professor of Botany Emeritus and serves on the herbarium staff at the B. P. Bishop Museum in Honolulu. A recent biography by Robert A Evers (Translations of the Illinois State Academy of Science 63: 434-938, 1970), a former student of Professor ,Jones, contains a complete biography. However, the period covered by St. John's notes is barely treated since no botanist now living knew Jones in the 1920s.
What Every Ph.D. Candidate
Shortly after I passed the comprehensive examination for my bachelor's degree in botany, some graduate students urged that I take a preliminary examination as soon thereafter as possible. They knew
that I was primed on details of the diverse areas of botany and would probably forget some of this in-formation in learning more and more about less and less in pursuit of a graduate degree. As it turned out I went elsewhere for the Ph.D., but must admit that many of the facts I had learned became a bit hazy in my mind by the time I was ready for my prelims. Some, of course, were no longer "facts".
Changes of Address: Notify the Treasurer of the Botanical Society of America, Inc., Dr. C. Ritchie Bell, Department of Botany, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, 26514.
Subscriptions for libraries and persons not members of the Botanical Society of America are obtainable at the rate of $4.00 a year. Send orders with checks payable to "Botanical Society of America, Inc." to the Treasurer.
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Microfilms of Plant Science Bulletin are available from University Microfilms, 300 North Zeeb Road, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48106.
The Plant Science Bulletin is published quarterly at the University of South Florida, 4202 Fowler Ave., Tampa, Fla. 33620. Second class postage paid at Tampa, Florida.
What, then should we now expect our Ph.D. candidates to know'? Anatomy, bryology, cytology, cytogenetics, developmental botany, ecology, genetics, microbiology, morphology, mycology, paleobotany, pathology, phycology, physiology, and taxonomy would be the "clear" answer readily obtained by interviewing the faculty of any large department of botany. And the importance of related areas of biochemistry, biometrics, chemistry, geology, mathematics, physics, soils, and zoology would undoubtedly be stressed as co-equals.
Perhaps a more reasonable standard might be all the areas at levels presented in some of the more comprehensive "Introductory Botany" textbooks. It is well-known that these have been used by many of the more astute candidates as guidelines in their reviewing. Many recent "introductory" textbooks are reasonably thorough in their coverage of the basic information of the major botanical areas. But do the contents of these "elementary" textbooks constitute a standard adequately high for measuring knowledge for the most advanced degree? Certainly they do not, yet it would be hoped that few Ph.D. candidates cease to learn in areas other than their specialty after passing the preliminary examination. Here is where the influence of the major professor, the graduate faculty member, can be of considerable importance. He should be a person of botanical (as well as other) interests beyond his current research, and one who can infect his students with his enthusiasms for breadth and diversification.
It would by my suggestion that the departmental faculty indicate one or several high-level introductory textbooks which they will use, but only as outlines or points of departure, for their examination questions. Each candidate might then be expected to know something beyond this level for perhaps three or four of the subfields covered by courses usually taken by undergraduates in the department. Some substitutions might be allowed for individuals having exceptional strengths in chemistry, physics, mathematics, etc., but even these persons I think should qualify at the introductory textbook level.
Few will dispute the wisdom of this (partial ?) listing, though some may deplore the requirement that a student engaged in the research of his area learn Professor X's field. The real problem probably centers about what depth of knowledge the candidate ought to have. What is taught in these areas to undergraduate classes might be a reasonable standard were it not for the fact that many advanced undergraduate courses either are as thorough as graduate courses or are courses designed for undergraduate as well as graduate students. As a con-sequence an undergraduate will often be enrolled in a selection of graduate level course work.
Adolph Hecht Washington State University
Air Pollution Workshop
For the past four years, a group of investigators con-ducting research on the response of vegetation (especially agricultural crops) to air pollutants have assembled yearly at centers of such research: Center for Air Environment Studies, Pennsylvania State University in 1969; Biology Department, University of Utah, 1970; Statewide Air Pollution Research Center, University of California at Riverside, 1971; and National Environmental Research Center (NERC), Raleigh, North
Carolina, 1972. These meetings are called the Air Pollution Workshop. Their main objective is to provide an open forum in which the many problems associated with air pollution research on all plant life can he freely discussed. Participants in the workshop have been from industry, federal experiment stations, state universities and experiment stations, private universities and research institutes in the United States and Canada. At the meeting at NERC there were about 75 in attendance, including extension specialists, research scientists and directors of research at air pollution research centers. Most of those attending have experience in — but not limited to — the fields of plant physiology, plant pathology and economics. The group is neither industrially nor environmentally oriented, but is interested in obtaining essential information on the effects of air pollution on plants and seeing that strong programs are maintained in this field.
At the meeting in Raleigh, the main emphasis was on developing future program goals and research needs pertaining to the effects of air pollution on vegetation and finding ways of communicating these needs to other scientists and program planners. As a result, the following priority list of research needs was developed.
The group felt that information on the effect of pollutants on yield and quality of agricultural and ornamental crops should have the highest priority. Such in-formation could be obtained by (a) country-wide monitoring of yield and quality effects by means of field chambers in which plants would be grown in ambient and pollutant-free air; (b) studies of chronic effects as developed by long-term exposures to specific pollutants in controlled environments; (c) studies of effects resulting from interaction of two or more pollutants, as well as biotic and other ahiotic factors; and (d) as a corollary to "a," the development of time-concentration fumigation models so that effects on yield and quality can be predicted as a result of exposures for given lengths of time at definite concentrations.
In spite of the emphasis that ie now being placed on practical results, the workshop group felt that the next important item was studies on the mode of action by which air pollutants produce their effects. Next in priority was research on the ability of vegetation to remove pollutants from the atmosphere. That is, while effects of pollutants on vegetation can result in economic loss, vegetation may also have the capacity of cleaning up the air through its capability to absorb large amounts of pollutants.
Finally, the workshop group felt that a mutually beneficial exchange of ideas might arise from a broader disciplinary base and that scientists in related fields might be interested in the above list of priorities and in joining the workshop. Therefore, the undersigned were designated to prepare this communication.
The 197:3 workshop will be held at the Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research, Yonkers, New York, probably in March, 1973. Anyone interested in attending should contact Dr..Jay S. Jacobsen, Boyce Thompson Institute, 1086 N. Broadway, Yonkers, New York 10701, or Dr. Guenther Stotsky, Biology Department, New York University, New York, New York 10003.
Harris M. Benedict
Stanford Research Institute
Walter W Heck
U. S. Department of Agriculture Merrill R. Pack North Carolina State University Washington State University
THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA invites applications for position as Assistant or Associate Professor, salary from $9,500 depending on qualifications and rank, effective July 1, 1973. Applicant must hold Ph.D. or equivalent, and have a strong botanical background. Duties involve teaching, with a demonstrated interest and ability in teaching a first-year course in Introductory Biology and in the undergraduate and graduate program in the area of specialization; and research, with preference in one of the following fields: biosystematics, population genetics, reproductive biology. Apply not later than November 1, 1972 with curriculum vitae and names of three person who can provide letters of reference, to The Head, Department of Botany, University of British Columbia, Vancouver 8, B. C., Canada.
THE SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION AND THE U. S. PEACE CORPS have undertaken a cooperative program to assist the developing countries in their efforts to obtain qualified personnel for environmental and natural resource assignments. These assignments cover a very broad spectrum of scientific and technical fields:
forestry, fisheries, wildlife management, national
park planning and management, ecological research,
marine biology, watershed management, en-
vironmental monitoring, preservation of endangered
species, air and water pollution research, water
resource development, conservation education, en-
vironmental health, etc.
Many of the assignments are field research projects; others are primarily administrative positions. The individual placements are normally with a host-government institution or with a local scientific or conservation organization. Occasionally the assignment will be with an international scientific program assisting the host country.
For information and applications, please contact Robert K. Poole, Office of Ecology, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D. C. 20560.
A quick glance down to the PSB masthead statement will reveal a few changes. I am pleased to welcome three new members of the Editorial Board who are replacing three botanists who have given long and faithful service. Dr. Donald Kaplan, Department of Botany, University of California (Berkeley) replaces Dr. Harlan Banks. Dr. Kaplan is a plant morphologist and anatomist, and presently is also chairman of the General Section of the BSA. Dr. Vuilleumier replaces Dr. William Stern. She is a biosystematist, and before joining the Smithsonian Institution recently as an Associate Curator, was a Research Associate at the Gray Herbarium, Harvard University. Dr. Elwood Ehrle, Dean of Arts and Sciences, Mankato State College, replaces Dr. Sydney Greenfield, is much interested in biological education. Before his present appointment he was on the staff of the Office of Biological Education, A.I.B.S. I am hoping we shall see frequent by-lines by our new Board members. Knowing them I am sure they have a lot they want to say!
I also want to take this opportunity to extend my sincere thanks to our retiring Editorial Board members. Their interest in and loyalty to PSB have helped to further the objectives set forth by Dr. Fuller when he founded the Bulletin.
Reduced Introductory Membership Rate Offered New 1973 B.S.A. Members
In an effort to increase society membership the Council, at the recent meeting in Minneapolis, appointed a membership committee to coordinate a membership drive. In the same action the Council authorized an initial 50% reduction in the dues for the 1973 members joining the Botanical Society before 1 January 1973. New student members who join the Society between 1 September 1972 and 31 December 1972 will pay only a $3.00 membership fee for 1973; new regular members will pay only $5.00 for their first year's membership. These reduced rates for new 197:3 members apply during the fall of 1972 only. All new 1973 members will receive the American Journal of Botany beginning with the January 197:3 issue.
To insure the printing of sufficient copies of the A.J.B., all new memberships at the reduced introductory rate must be returned on or before 1 January 197:3, to the new Treasurer, C. Ritchie Bell, Department of Botany, Coker Hall, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina 27514. New memberships should be on the special New Membership" blanks that will be sent out to all present BSA members in the various fall mailings. The reduced introductory rate, coupled with the improved printing (and authorized larger size) of the American Journal of Botany should make it relatively easy for each present BSA member to get one new member. Give it a try! NOW! A separate announcement on
colored paper is included in this issue of PSB that may be detached and placed on bulletin boards, and we urge you to do this in your institution. Additional special application blanks may be secured from the Treasurer, Dr. Bell.
8th International Conference on
This is a preliminary announcement of the arrangements for the 8th International Conference on Plant Growth Substances to be held in Tokyo, August 26 - September 1, 1973, under the auspices of the International Plant Growth Substances Association (Secretary, Denis Carr, Canberra; President, Kenneth V. Thimann, Santa Cruz).
The main sessions of the scientific program will he devoted to the (1) chemistry, (2) physiology, and (3) assays of natually occurring and synthetic plant growth substances, with emphasis on the fundamental aspects of the action of these substances. We intend that the conference will be truly international and that the scientific program will be composed of papers on work in progress. Please note that it will be necessary to restrict the number of participants for this reason. Limited funds may be available to assist some overseas participants, particularly younger scientists, but it is hoped that senior scientists will be able to cover their own travel costs.
The Organizing Committee has the responsibility for keeping a close contact with growth substance workers. If you are interested in the Tokyo Conference, please let us know by airmail your name, title and full address for the pre-registration.
Organizing Committee of the 8th International Conference on Plant Growth Substances
c/o Professor Saburo Tamura
Faculty of Agriculture
University of Tokyo
Yayoi, Tokyo 113, Japan
Arnold Arboretum is 100 Years Old
The Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University celebrated its Centennial Anniversary May 21-28, 1972 with an elaborate program of symposia, tours, special lectures, and social events. An all-day symposium on "The Potential of Arboreta and Botanical Gardens" was con-ducted in two concurrent sessions, one emphasizing horticulture, the other botany. The botanical section in-
eluded lectures by Richard S. Cowan speaking on "The Herbarium as a Data Bank"; William Stern on "The Wood Collection — What Should be its Future?"; Gilbert S. Daniels on "The Botanist and the Computer"; and, Lalit M. Srivastava on "Cambial Activity in Trees". The afternoon speakers were Otto Solbrig speaking on "Chromosome Cytology and Botanical Gardens, a Marriage of Convenience"; Frank Santamour on "Arboretums, Genes, and Plant Improvement"; and, Calaway Dodson on "Pollinators and Flowers".
The lectures and symposia are to be printed in forthcoming publications of the Arnold Arboretum.
Botanical Society of America, Inc. Committees — 1972
(with expiration dates)
Committee on Corresponding Members
Chairman 1972: Richard C. Starr (1974) Lincoln Constance (1973) Harlan P. Banks (1972)
Merit Awards Committee
Chairman (1972): David R. Goddard (1972) Ernst C. Abbe (1972)
W. Dwight Billings (1973) Albert C. Smith (1973) G. F. Papenfuss (1974) Ex officio: President
Darbaker Prize Committee
Chairman (1972): Isabella A. Abbott (1972) Bruce C. Parker (1973) Norma J. Lang (1974)
New York Botanical Garden Award Committee
Chairman (1972): Bruce C. Parker (1972) J. William Schopf (1972) Robert E. Cleland (1972) William F. Millington
Jeanette Siron Pelton Award Committee
Chairman (1972): Augustus E. DeMaggio (1972)
Taylor A. Steeves (1972) Edward C. Cantino (1973) John G. Torrey (1973)
Chairman (1972): Walter R. Tulecke (1972) Kenton L. Chambers (1973) Lawrence Bogorad (1974) Patricia L. Walne (1975) Ex officio: Secretary
Chairman (1972): Peter Kaufman (1973) John P. Rier, Jr. (1972) Elwood B. Ehrle (1972) Nicholas C. Maravolo
J. Donald LaCroix (1974) Paul C. MacMillan (1974) Kt officio: President
Secretary, Secretary of
Teaching Section, Editor
of Plant Science Bulletin, Representative to AAAS Co-operative Committee on the
Teaching of Science and
Mathematics, Past Chair-
man of Committee
Chairman (1972): Elsie Quarterrnan (1973) Charles E. Olmsted (1972) Estella B. Leopold (1972) Norton H. Nickerson (1972) William A. Niering (1973) Catherine Keever (1973)
By-Laws Committee (1972 only)
Chairman: Harold C. Bold Howard J. Arnott Billie L. Turner
Chairman: Aaron J. Sharp Committee will become active in September, 1972. Committee members have not been selected as yet.
REPRESENTATIVES TO VARIOUS ORGANIZATIONS OR COMMITTEES AAAS
W. Gordon Whaley (1974)
A. Orville Dahl (1975)
AIBS Governing Board Roy L. Taylor (1974)
AAAS Cooperative Committee on the Teaching of Science and Mathematics Robert W. Hoshaw (1973)
Division of Biology and Agriculture, National Research Council Donald E. Stone (1972)
Following the general pattern of official visits, Dr. Steere's schedule, during the ten days of this stay in Japan, was an exceptionally crowded one. It included press and TV interviews, travel, and lectures. Dr. Steere spoke at the National Science Museum in Tokyo; and later, at a botanical symposium held in Nara, he delivered a lecture on "Two Impossible Bryophytes" which related to a botanical anomaly somewhat akin to that of the continued existence of dinosaurs in modern zoological affairs.
Not content with impossible mosses, Dr. Steere, working in conjunction with the International Date Line, managed the somewhat unbelievable feat of returning to California almost eight hours before he left Japan!
At the 109th annual meeting of the National Academy of Sciences, the election of 75 new members was announced. They were elected in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. Among the newly elected members are botanists Harold J. Evans, Oregon State University; Jack R. Harlan, Unviersity of Illinois; and, Reed C. Rollins, Harvard University.
The Department of Botany, University of Texas announces that Prof. A. E. Bell will return to King's College, University of London, England to replace Professor Whatley as Head of the Department of Botany at that institution (Dr. Whatley has accepted the Chair of Botany at Oxford University). Two new appointments in Botany, effective September 1972, have been made at the University of Texas, both at the level of Professor; these are: Dr. Theodore Delevoryas (currently Prof. of Biology, Yale University and Dr. Donald Levin (currently Associate Professor of Biology, Yale University).
The President of New York Botanical Garden, Dr. William C. Steere, has brought numerous honors to the Botanical Garden over the course of years, but none quite so replendent as his latest. The Emperor of Japan, following upon the recommendation of the Japanese Diet, has recognized Dr. Steere's work in promoting good international relations in the field of science by arranging for student exchange between the two countries.
On March 30, at special ceremonies in the Ministry of Education, Tokyo, the Second Class of the Order of the Sacred Treasure was conferred upon Dr. Steere. This is a most unusual award to he given outside political and diplomatic circles (First Class of the Order is reserved solely for heads of state), and is indicative of the value placed upon Dr. Steere's efforts.
Apart from the actual receipt of the Imperial Decoration, the most memorable highlight of the ceremonies surrounding the event was an audience with Emperor Hirohito, held in His Imperial Majesty's laboratory within the Palace. Again a most unusual distinction was granted to Dr. Steere, for the audience was conducted on an informal basis with the Emperor, Dr. Hara (botanical counselor to His Majesty), and Dr. Steere discussing matters of scientific interest on a scientific plane rather than a political one. Such an event is of extreme rarity.
CUMMINS, GEORGE B. The Rust Fungi of Cereals, Grasses and Bamboos. Springer-Verlag of New York. 570 pp. 1971.
George Baker Cummins, formerly Professor of Botany, Purdue University, now retired, has contributed to Mycology a comprehensive treatise on the rust fungi (Uredinales) of the Gramineae of the world. This book is an illustrated, descriptive, taxonomic nomenclatorial manual of these important pathogenic fungi. The full title is The Rust Fungi of Cereals, Grasses and Bamboos.
There are 419 species belonging to 6 valid genera, Puccinia, Uromyces, Physopella, Phakopsora, Dasturella, Stereostratum, and included is the form genus Uredo, where the perfect (telial or teleutosporic) stage is not known. The majority of the species, 262 of the 419, are illustrated with pen and ink drawings by the author. It is impossible to praise too highly these fine illustrations. They are based on the spores thus placing the emphasis on the fungi rather than on pathogenic reactions of the hosts. Type material, or authentic sources, are the bases of the drawings. A list of the source of the material for many of the figures is given with credit to various workers. It must be pointed out, however that the form of citations are so incomplete that it would be difficult, if not impossible, to check many of them.
The illustrations are of the same magnification thus facilitating comparisons of species. The urediniospores (urediospores) and teliospores are illustrated and in several forms, optical sections showing thickness of walls and numbers and positions of pores, and sculpturing of the wall. To better indicate the sculpturing there are included exterior or surface views which are expertly done.
The keys to the species are of two kinds, (1) by the genera of the grasses and (2) by the structure of the spores of the species of fungi. By using the keys based on the fungi it becomes feasible to make identifications when the identity of the host plant is not known.
Statistically author Cummins states that 95% of the species belong to Puccinia, Uromyces, and the form genus
Uredo. This is a verifiable fact but whether the author's claim that his "delimitation of the species is conservative" raises a question upon which it is difficult to comment. In taxonomy, workers vary in their opinions as to what constitutes conservatism. This reviewer is inclined to accept the Cummins claim but questions will certainly be raised by those familiar with these fungi.
The appearance of this book should not come as a surprise to anyone familiar with the interests and publications of Dr. Cummins. It was forecast. First by "The species of Puccinia on the Andropogoneae", Uredineana 4: 5-89. 1953, where a "Group System" was proposed based on the uredial stage. But more specifically by "Host Index and Morphological Characterization of the Grass Rusts of the World", The Plant Disease Reporter, Supplement 2:37, 52 pp., 1956. In this paper it was stated, "This host index and tabulation of the principal morphological characteristic of the rust fungi parasitic on the grasses has been compiled as a preliminary but necessary adjunct to a monographic study of the grass rust fungi of the world." In this 1971 book we have that promised monograph. The preliminary presentation revised the "Group System" which had been initiated in Uredineana paper. Nine main groups were recognized based on the uredial structures including the paraphyses and the markings and pores. Modestly the author admits that some records have probably been omitted, and some errors made, but believes it to be of value as a compilation of the rusts of grasses assembled, and characterized, with probable synonomy indicated.
We are fortunate that Dr. Cummins has fulfilled his promise of 1956 by this 1971 volume. His grasp of the subject, with his access to wonderful records and herbaria, and opportunities for field studies, have enabled him to present a masterful treatise indispensable to mycologists, pathologists, and useful to many others.
In the publicity for this 1971 volume several "Related Titles" are listed which are too general to be of much value. It is a little surprising that no reference is made to a book of 269 pp. purporting to cover the Cereal Rusts. The word purporting is used because actually this volume by K. Starr Chester (Oklahoma A. & M. College) is a restricted treatment dealing only with the Leaf Rusts, and only with the Cereal Wheat. For a review of Starr's book see Jour. N. Y. Bot. Garden 49: 44-45, 1948.
This reviewer cannot refrain from expressing regret that no Bibliography is included in this 1971 monograph by Cummins. Bibliography is here used in the sense of a systematic list of literature, whether cited or not.
Here such a list would be extensive as it would include the many sources in detail, which the author must have consulted. It would be especially helpful to future workers in this field to have such a list presenting in the usual form of a bibliography the author, date, title, and
citation. Frank D. Kern Penn. State Univ.
HATCH, M. C., C. B. OSMOND, and R. O. SLATYER. (Editors). Photosynthesis and Photorespiration. Wiley-Interscience, New York. 1971. 565 pp.
Do you completely understand the difference between plants which fix carbon dioxide in photosynthesis by the C4-dicarboxylic acid or "Hatch and Slack" pathway and those with the C. or "Calvin" pathway? Moreover, do you know the relationship of photorespiration and
Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) to these two car-bon reduction processes? More specifically, do you know how various environmental factors, such as light in-tensity, temperature, CO2 and oxygen concentrations affect these different types of plants? What is the difference in leaf or chloroplast morphology between a Cs and a C., plant, and what does the term "Kranz type" morphology refer to? What is the role of the microbodies?
If you have not stayed abreast of the development in this area of research and would like a good treatment of these topics, I highly recommend Photosynthesis and Photorespiration.
This book represents the collection of 62 papers which were presented at a meeting held at the Australian National University from November 23 to December 5, 1970. This meeting was concerned with advances in photosynthesis and photorespiration with emphasis on the recent research on the C4 dicarboxylic acid pathway. Since the book was reproduced using a photographic technique it was available soon after the conference and therefore most of the work presented is still quite recent.
The format of the book is well planned with four major topic areas: environmental and evolutionary aspects; carbon dioxide assimilation; chloroplast structure and function; and photorespiration microbodies. Within each of these four areas there are three distinct sections; first, from one to three introductory review papers which are followed by a number of shorter research papers, which in turn are followed by one or more summary or assessment papers. Therefore, each of the four sections stands somewhat independent as a topic area. If you are not interested in research detail you can read the more generalized papers and refer only to those research papers which interest you most. Examples of some of the very good review papers are: M. D. Hatch, Mechanism and Function of the CI Pathway of Photosynthesis; I. P. Ting, Nonautotrophic CO2 Fixation and Crassulacean Acid Metabolism; N. K. Boardman, The Photochemical Systems in C3 and Ca Plants; M. Gibbs, Biosynthesis of Glycolic Acid; N. E. Tolbert, Leaf Peroxisomes and Photorespiration; and H. Beevers, Comparative Biochemistry of Microbodies (Glyoxysomes, Peroxisomes).
I must highly recommend this collection of papers as very useful for the researcher in this area or in related areas of plant cell metabolism. In addition, it would be very useful for the teacher in the area of plant physiology and even general botany. Much of the information now available should be incorporated into general courses even at the introductory level since the dicarboxylic acid type photosynthesis makes a very interesting story from an evolution and adaptation point of view.
Donald Miles University of Missouri
MELNIKOV, N. N. Chemistry of Pesticides. Translated from the Russian. Springer-Verlag, New York, Inc. 1971. 480 pp. $19.80.
Professor Melnikov ranges far in his coverage of the chemistry of pesticides of all types in this volume. The number and diversity of compounds discussed are most impressive. The book consists of an introductory chapter, a chapter on formulation and 29 chapters on pesticides grouped according to chemical type rather than according to biological specificity. This arrangement offers a useful contrast to most books on pesticides which focus attention on classes of compounds as they affect a specific group of organisms. The arrangement used makes readily evident
the broad spectrum of biological activity within a chemical group. For example, the extensive chapter on organophosphorous pesticides reveals that within this group are not only many effective insecticides, nematocides, and acaricides, but also some fungicides and herbicides.
Primary consideration is given to synthesis and to the chemical and physical properties of the compounds. Brief comments, however, are almost always made about the practical applications of each pesticide and information on mammalian toxicity is given for a high percentage of the compounds. There is appreciable information on structure-activity relationships, but little on modes of action.
This volume is an updated version of the 1968 Russian edition. Discussions of recently developed systemic fungicides (benomyl, thiabendazole and furidazole) and systemic oxathiin fungicides (Vitavax and Plantvax) leads one to believe that the book is reasonably up-to-date in its coverage of various types of pesticides. These systemic fungicides are just now being accepted for practical use.
The book is documented only by general references averaging about 10 at the end of each chapter. Thus much of the information in the book is obviously cited from secondary sources. Lack of specific reference citations is probably the major weakness of the book as a reference source for the research worker. A search through a number of references may be required to locate more detail about a specific point discussed. Nevertheless, this book is a valuable, comprehensive source of information for all those concerned with any aspect of chemical pest control, including those concerned with the ecological impact and the human hazards.
Hugh D. Sider, University of Maryland
NOBEL, P. S., Plant Cell Physiology: A
Physicochemical Approach. W. H. Freeman and Co.,
San Francisco, 1970. viii + 267 pages :34 illus., $7.75.
I recently read a paper entitled "Understanding Plant Physiology and Other Branches of Mathematics" [Search 2(2), Feb., 1972]. That title applies to Nobel's book very well. It also wittily points out a paradox in the biological curricula of recent times. The student majoring in one of the life sciences is usually required to enroll in at least one calculus course, but too seldom is he given the opportunity to use this powerful mathematical tool in his coursework in biology. What a waste!
Users of Park Nobel's hook will not only gain appreciation for some of the advantages of applying calculus to biological problems, but they may also find that such applications can be explained lucidly. He has a way of "walking" the reader through the origin and implications of equations in a manner calculated to take the edge off of fear of complex mathematics.
In organization this volume proves to be a logical ex-position of its subject with emphasis on those topics of particular interest to its author. Permeability and related membrane phenomena and the light reactions and energetics of photosynthesis predominate. The Calvin cycle and respiration are given scant attention. Theory is stressed; experimental methods and data are not. A list of general references is appended to each chapter, hooks rather than journal articles being most numerous. Literature citation in the text are not used, and, therefore, the book reads smoothly. However, the in-convenience of having to dig out sources regretably en-sues.
A work of this kind requires extensive use of approximations and assumptions. I am especially impressed that Nobel clearly acknowledges these. He is also careful to distinguish between empirical and theoretical considerations and between notation arising from convention and that from theory.
Problems follow each chapter, and the appendices include both answers to the problems and such conveniences as log tables, conversion factors, and lists of variables and constants.
A reviewer can quibble over details, list differences of opinion, point out typos, and otherwise demonstrate he has read the book critically, but Plant Cell Physiology deserves a more positive response. I felt that the approximations were uncomfortably loose in a couple of places and questioned a generalization or two, and I noticed only one typographic error of consequence. On the other hand, the conviction that we need more texts writ-ten with Nobel's approach (and perhaps by him) grew consistently as I read.
Howard J. Stein Grand Valley State College
HARBORNE, J. B., D. BOULTER, and B. L. TUR-
NER (editors). Chemotaxonomy of the Leguminosae.
Academic Press, London and N. Y. 1971. 612 pp. $31.00
This large and costly volume is still another addition to the growing number of collections of chemosystematic review papers. Differing from the many previous publications, the present volume is confined to the analysis of comparative chemical data in a single plant family, the economically important Leguminosae.
If scientific publications reasonably can be regarded as being either "conceptual" or "descriptive," then this book is definitely of the latter type. The stated aim of the editors is "to provide a series of chapters describing the known distribution of both low molecular weight and macromolecular constituents [in the Leguminosae], writ-ten by acknowledged experts, together with two summary chapters fitting the results available into a taxonomic framework." This aim unquestionably has been achieved.
Vernon Heywood introduces the book in the first chap-ter with a "systematic purview" of the family complete with discussions of the historical development of the taxonomy of the group, a list of economically important legumes, discussions of the taxonomy of each of the four recognized subfamilies, a brief treatment of the presumptive evolutionary relationships within the family, and systematic lists of the genera of the Caesalpinioideae and Lotoideae with known chromosome numbers included for the former. B. L. Turner "sums up" the volume in the last chapter by giving his view of the systematic implications of macromolecular and micromolecular chemical data in the family. Sandwiched between these general introductory and concluding remarks are 13 very specific chapters dealing with the distribution of the following compounds in the family (respective authors indicated in parentheses): flavonoids (J. B. Harborne); alkaloids (J. A. Mears and T. J. Mabry); non-protein amino acids (E. A. Bell); monosaccharides, oligosaccharides, and polyols (J. E. Courtois and F. Percheron); polysaccharides (R. W. Bailey); lipids (I. A. Wolff and W. F. Kwolek); terpenoids (J. B. Harborne); and proteins, structure (D. Boulter and E. Derbyshire), serology (J. Kloz), phytohaemagglutinins (G. C. Toms and A. Western), enzymes (D. A. Thurman), urease (C. J. Bailey and D. Boulter), and cytochrome c (D. Boulter and E. W. Thompson).
Because the book consists mainly of tables, lists, and discussions of the occurence of compounds in various taxa of the family, to allow for easy reference the editors wisely have included four separate indexes to the volume: (1) authors (including those cited in the bibliographies of the chapters themselves); (2) chemical compounds; (3) subjects; and (4) genera and species. One disappointing feature of the book's format, following the convention of most chemical journals, is the omission of titles from the references cited in the bibliographies at the end of each chapter.
For the systematist not specializing in the Leguminosae or for the phytochemist interested in only one particular class of compounds, this book hardly will be considered top priority, especially considering the price and with the knowledge that specific chapters probably can be obtained by reprint from the author(s). But for the serious student of the systematics of the pea family and for dedicated chemosystematists, the book should prove very interesting and valuable as a reference. It should be kept in mind, however, that even for the specialists the value of the book is not in providing new insights to the systematics of the Leguminosae, but rather in bringing together a large quantity of chemical data and highlighting certain chemical and systematic problems in the family that need to be explored further.
Tod F. Stuessy, Ohio State University
CRAIGHEAD, FRANK C., SR., The Trees of South Florida. Vol. I. The Natural Environments and their Succession, University of Miami Press, Coral Gables, Fla., 1971. 212 pp. $5.95.
Just over twenty years ago Dr. Craighead retired from his position as Chief of the Division of Forest Insect Investigation, U.S.D.A., a post he had held for :36 years. He came then to live in South Florida "in retirement" and has ever since worked and studied prodigiously the interrelationships of plant/animal communities of the area, Dade, Collier and Monroe Counties.
This small part of our country has been the focal point of much controversy in recent times because of the intimate relation of profoundly complex and significantly fluctuating natural environments and the extensive use and consequent alteration deriving from both urban and agricultural interests. The region is in large part new geologically varying only relatively slightly in topography from sea level. Its natural communities are influenced greatly by various climatic and edaphic pressures, by slowly rising sea level, by hurricanes, salinity factors, fire, frost, and both seasonal and cyclic precipitation levels. These recurring and generally unpredictable, often catastrophic, phenomena have for some years been exacerbated by disturbances accompanying man's decision to effect marked and often conflicting changes to meet his own diverse needs.
Hitherto the natural history of southernmost Florida, including changes effected by man, has been studied for the most part fortuitously and in bits and pieces by early botanists, persons with general natural history bents, professional ecologists, wildlife managers, agriculturalists and others. This is the first time a single individual, with an insatiable curiosity, seemingly limitless energy, and broad perspective, has sought to gain a thorough knowledge of its intricacies. He has achieved a monumental synthesis which gives such sloganistic questions as the developers', "Is the water for man or for the birds and alligators?" a context sufficient to the need for a proper reply.
The text, specially of the first two (of the three) chapters is not exactly easy reading although this is not because it is couched in technical jargon. The rhetoric is plain and simple, a blessing; the difficulty is that there is described in intimate detail the relationships of features of topography and geography, dynamics of environmental, vegetational, and animal populational changes, a plethora of interactions occurring over short periods of time. Yet even without the reader studiously perceiving every nuance, he can gain a reasonable sense of the complexity, not to say the beauty, of this island-like ecological system.
The final, third, chapter treats in detail what the author discerns as nine physiographic provinces and their respective plant associations. These accounts tend to be somewhat redundant inasmuch as some plant associations occur in two or even in several of the provinces.
This is a timely book and will be very helpful both to one who has an interest in controversial aspects of use of the land in South Florida and to tourists who may wish to have a more enriching experience in the Everglades generally or more particularly in the Everglades National Park. Accompanying the text there is an abundance of black and white photographs (not especially well reproduced), each with an excellentlycompōsed legend. These should be very useful in helping visitors to orient themselves.
Given the main thrust of the book, the title is seen to be unfortunate yet it leads to optimism that a second volume with descriptive accounts of the kinds of trees will be forthcoming.
R. K. Godfrey, Florida State University
PREECE, I. F. and B. J. DEVERALL (editors).
Physiological Plant Pathology. Vol. I, No. 1. January
1971. Academic Press, London. (Vol. I, 4 issues, $19.00)
The international journal publishes papers on physiological, biochemical, ultrastructural, genetical or molecular aspects of host-parasite interactions.Most of these areas are in fact, represented among the nine papers in the first issue of Volume I. Two papers in this issue consider structural changes in plant tissues resulting from host-parasite interactions. One of these actually deals very little with the parasite, but presents a metabolic model for plasticizing of cell walls and formation of tyloses. The other presents a study of ultrastructual changes in tobacco associated with the hypersensitive reaction to plant pathogenic bacteria. Two papers consider enzymes in relation to plant disease. The action of pectic enzymes produced by Erwinia chrysanthemi on plant tissue is the subject of one of these; the relationship of peroxidase activity to virus multiplication in cucumber plants is the subject of the other. Significant articles on phytoalexin will undoubtedly appear often in subsequent issues of the journal. The first issue contains two articles on this subject. One describes the breakdown of pisatin in culture by fungi pathogenic to pea; the other reports the identity of a phytoalexin produced by alfalfa in response to fungal infection. The role of leaf-surface ecology in disease control in examined in one paper and another describes the effect of light intensity of infection of wheat by Septoria tritici. Among the papers in the first issue, investigations of viral, fungal and bacterial pathogens are all represented. One study of a viral pathogen has already been mentioned. A second paper describes increased virus multiplication caused by actinomycin D.
Generally, the quality of the articles is good. This is a much needed journal which should be received enthusiastically by plant pathologists throughout the world. Many of the fundamental papers on host-parasite interactions will no doubt appear in the journal. By bringing together these papers, the journal should promote progress in an area of research which holds much promise for the future.
Hugh D. Sisler, University of Maryland
BURBIDGE, NANCY T. and MAX GRAY. Flora of the Australian Capital Territory. Australian National University Press, Canberra, 1970. vii + 447 pp. $12 (A), $14.50 (USA).
Since the days of Sir Joseph Banks and Daniel Solander, the world has been aware of the extremely rich and divergent flora and fauna of Australia. The highly distinctive plants and animals of that country are among its most precious natural resources. Certainly they serve as a lodestone to draw biologists from all over the world to study and collect in Australia. And well they should for, as in so many other countries about the world, agricultural, commercial, and mining developments are rapidly destroying much of the less widespread habitats, particularly in the highly populated coastal area. Bureaucratic insensitivity has permitted the preservation of only a small sample of the national habitats in state and federal parks and preserves. Surely some species have already become extinct in Australia, possibly some of them still unknown to science for many Australian plants remain to be discovered, described, and named.
In view of these distressing developments, masquerading as ever as "progress", it is imperative that the Australian botanical community prepare a desperately needed flora of the whole country, a modern Flora Australiensis to replace Bentham and Mueller's flora of that name (published in 7 volumes in 1863-1878), now long obsolete and unavailable. Australian systematists have for many years offered to undertake this huge project if they could be given a minimum of encouragement by the top levels of Australian science and moderate financial backing by the national government. For reasons not understood by the world's botanists, this modest support has not been granted. Therefore, in lieu of this national flora, the plant taxonomists of Australia have been found to bring out piecemeal floras of the various states and territories. The very large degree of overlap in the floras of adjacent states makes this method of publication highly inefficient and expensive though obviously necessary under the circumstances.
PLANT SCIENCE BULLETIN
LIFE SCIENCE BUILDING
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH FLORIDA TAMPA. FLORIDA 33620
The Flora of the Australian Capital Territory is a recent addition to the growing list of excellent regional floras of Australia. Larger than our own District of Columbia, the A. C. T. comprises the national capital, Canberra, on the Murrumbidgee River at the foot of the Australian Alps, and surrounding country, for a total area of 939 square miles. The Territory at its longest and widest points is about 52 miles long (north and south) and 32 miles wide. Elevations vary at least from the Murrumbidgee River at 1,900 feet to Bimberi at 6264 feet. It is entirely surrounded by the southeastern corner of New South Wales.
This flora describes all the seed plants, both native and naturalized, known from the A. C. T., totalling 1035 native species in 412 genera and 92 families, with 289 additional naturalized species. Almost every genus is illustrated by the 409 helpful line drawings of Dr. Burbidge. All descriptions are included in the strictly dichotomous keys to families, genera, and species. The species keys are quite detailed with the important diagnostic characteristics printed in italics. They appear to be quite usable. For each species there is a statement of frequency, habitats, and distribution in the A. C. T. and general distribution in the Australian states or abroad. Although the hook is prepared primarily for college and university students, the detailed keys, drawings, and glossary should make it a most useful tool and reference work for other botanists, ecologists, foresters, agriculturists, and informed amateurs.
This book is very well printed with a minimum of typographical errors. There are very few things about it to criticize. A more detailed discussion of the geography, geology, physiography, climatology, and botanical history of the A. C. T. would have been most helpful. A vegetation map prepared by Prof. L. D. Pryor and a brief discription of the several vegetation types are included in the introduction but they could have been much expanded with photographs of the various plant communities. Because the taxonomy of the species included seems to be quite up-to-date, it is unfortunate that the authors chose to arrange the angiosperm families in a long obsolete, early Englerian system of classification. They would have been better advised to arrange the families according to a more phylogenetic system or even alphabetically, at least within the two subclasses. However, these are rather minor details, for the flora is obviously a result of much painstaking research. The authors are to be congratulated for a work very well done.
Robert F Thorne, Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden
PLANT SCIENCE BULLETIN LIFE SCIENCE BUILDING UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH FLORIDA TAMPA, FLORIDA 33620