Plant Science Bulletin archive
Issue: 1974 v20 No 2 Summer
PLANT SCIENCE BULLETIN
A Publication of the Botanical Society of America, Inc.
June 1974 Vol. 20 No. 2
Totoras, Taxonomy, and Thor Charles B. Heiser, Jr. 22
Totoras, Taxonomy, and Thor
Charles B. Heiser, Jr.1
Anyone who has read Thor Heyerdahl's books, browsed through National Geographic Magazine, or visited Lake Titicaca is probably familiar with the reed raft or balsa. Although the area in which such boats are now found is rather limited, in the past they had a very extensive distribution in nearly all of the extreme western part of the Americas. At one time they were common in California where the tule, Scirpus acutus (24), was widely used for their construction, although both cattails (Typha) and other species of bulrushes (Scirpus) were used as well (27). The Seri Indians of the Gulf of California made their water craft from the Carrizal reed (Phragmites communis) (6). In South America balsas of reeds were used both on lakes and on the Pacific. They still survive in a few places in highland Ecuador and coastal Peru, as well as on Lake Titicaca. Although in 1930 Knoche (26) stated that the cabellitos de totora were disappearing in Ecuador, I observed their use at Lago de San Pablo in 1969. The principal plant employed for them in South America is the totora reed, the identity of which will be subject to further discussion. In the Old World, too, reed vessels had a fairly wide distribution (23). Papyrus (Cyperus) was the plant most often used in their construction. The Ra expedition across the Atlantic by Heyerdahl was made in a boat of papyrus.
In his American Indians in the Pacific Heyerdahl (16) pointed out that the reed craft of Easter Island was strikingly similar to that of Peru. In Aku-Aku (17), a popular account of his visit to Easter Island, he describes the great number of ways in which the reeds are used. He also tells of making pollen cores in one of the freshwater crater lakes where the totora grew and that these were to be submitted to Prof Olof Selling for analysis. The scientific results of his expedition were published in two large volumes, and in Volume 1 (22) we find considerable more detail on the totora which is identified as Scirpus riparius Presl. It seems fairly evident from archaeological material that the totora was on the island long before the first contacts with Europeans. Heyerdahl (22) writes "The plant was observed on the island by the earliest European visitors, and properly identified by them as the totora they knew from the irrigated swamps on the desert coast of Peru (Herve', 1770, p. 23; Agiiera, 1770, p. 102)." Herve' (15) states, "There were other small plantain gardens [on Easter Island], and several plantations and fields of sugar-cane, sweet potatoes, taro, yams, white gourds, and plants like those whose leaves are employed at Callao [Peru] for making mats." All that Agiiera says is that the more polished and powerful persons on the island inhabit small huts covered with totora reeds. Ferdon (22), who states these reeds were originally planted on Easter Island, quotes Herve' and interprets his passage to mean that they were grown as a "garden crop."
In his discussion in this work (22), Heyerdahl proceeds to tell more about the totora, stating that this species was once used for constructing boats all along coastal Peru, "where it was cultivated through irrigation by all the coastal cultures including the Nazca, Paracas, and Chimu." He adds that this was the same totora that was used at Lake Titicaca. This is followed by a discussion of Polygonum acuminatum which grows with the totora on Easter Island and which, according to him, was used medicinally by the people of the Lake Titicaca region as it was by the aboriginal population of Easter Island.
1Sometime ago when the Editor of the PSli asked hie for a contribution I had nothing to offer. Later when I had occasion to show some slides of Ecuador I found that I had forgotten the scientific name of the totora. As I was looking it up, I recalled Heyerdahl's statement in Aku-Aku that totora of Easter Island was the same as that of Peru. At that time I had read the book I had wondered if this were true, and I had meant to look into it. 1 finally did so and the present article is a condensed version of the result. I would like to thank Ian E. Effort, Douglas Ellson, Barbara Pickersgill and Louisa R. Stark for information they supplied to me.
Heyerdahl (22) writes, "Admitting that the plant [the totora] could have been intentionally introduced by prehistoric voyagers from Peru, Skottsberg ( . . . , p. 412) adds: `A direct transport of seeds across the ocean without man's assistance is difficult to imagine, and it is futile to speculate in land connections.' " Previous to the statement quoted, Skottsberg (35) after stating that Scirpus riparius and Polygonum acuminatum are American, writes, "Their mode of occurence and ecology oblige us to regard them as truly indigenous, unless they have been intentionally introduced in prehistoric time during one of the mythical cruises which, according to Heyerdahl, put Easter Island in contact with Peru." This is the only "ad-mission" that Skottsberg makes in so far as I can determine. Further along Heyerdahl states that Skottsberg2 "finds that an aboriginal human introduction of at least two South American species is likely and will, greatly ease the difficult problem of transportation in pre-European times."
Rather similar accounts of the totora are found in Heyerdahl's subsequent papers (18, 19,20). In one (19) we learn that the pollen cores studied by Dr. Selling "reveal that the Polygonum pollen suddenly began to deposit in the crater lakes [on Easter Island] during the earliest human settlement period." In another one (20), he, giving the same references as before states that Skottsberg showed that the totora must have been carried from South America and planted as root stocks in the Easter Island lakes and that Skottsberg found that the totora of Easter Island "was identical with the species cultivated through irrigation on the desert coast of Peru."
In his recent book about the Ra voyages, Heyerdahl (21) in reminiscing about Easter Island and the totora reed, states: The uppermost layers of mud in the lake were yellow with pollen from the totora, mixed with remnants of the stalks. The pollen of only one other water plant, Polygonum acuminatum, was present down through the layers to the ash that indicated the coming of man. Before man arrived, pollen from fresh water plants was absent. He then points out that both species must have been brought by man to the island; they could not have been carried by wind, the ocean, or birds, for they "generate only by new shoots from their suckers." He again repeats that the totora was cultivated by coastal Peruvians in irrigated swamps and they had used it in much the same way as it was used on Easter Island.
2C. Skottsberg. Paskon. Gotehorgs Handels-och Sjofarts-Tidning. Oct. 1957. I have not seen this.
Heyerdahl's account of the totora raises several questions. Are any of the totoras of Peru really the same as the totora of Easter Island? Was the totora actually cultivated in prehistoric times on the Peruvian coast? Must the totora owe its introduction onto Easter Island to man'?
Heyerdahl uses the names S. riparius or S. Tatora for the Easter Island plant in his various accounts, Skottsberg collected the plant on Easter Island, and his specimen was described by Kiikenthal (28), an authority on sedges, as S. riparius Presl. var. paschalis. Skoitsberg (:35), however, later concluded himself that Kiikenthal's variety was not worthy of recognition, which is Heyerdahl's basis for considering the Easter Island and the Peruvian plant the same.
There is still disagreement as to the number of taxa covered by the common name, totora, and as to the rank to he given to these taxa, but all recent workers are in ac-cord that the name S. riparius Presl. can not be used because of the earlier use of this name by Sprengle for a different species. In 1941 Beetle recognized the totora of the South American highlands as a species calling it S. Tatora Kunth. He gives its distribution as the Lake Titicaca area, including both Cuzco and La Paz, although he lists some species described from Chile in its synonymy. Beetle (7) transferred the Easter Island plant, var. paschalis, from S. riparius to S. californicus, the typical element of which ranges from the United States to Chile and is also found in the Hawaiian Islands. Barros (4) disagreed somewhat with Beetle's treatment. He did not recognize S. Tatora as a distinct species and reduced it to a variety, S. californicus var. Tatora. However, he does not give the distribution of this variety nor does he mention the plant of Easter Island. In the most recent detailed study of the group, Koyama (25) distinguishes two subspecies of S. californicus, ssp. californicus and ssp. Tatora. The distribution of the latter subspecies agrees with that given by Beetle for S. Tatora but with the addition of a site from lowland Chile. Under ssp. californicus, he recognizes three varieties, one of which is var. paschalis, whose distribution he gives as Chile and the southwestern Pacific Islands around Easter Island.
From the foregoing it is evident that the weight of taxonomic opinion indicates that the Scirpus of Easter Island (S. californicus var. paschalis or S. californicus ssp. californicus var. paschalis) is distinct from the highland Peruvian totora (S. Tatora, S. californicus var. Tatora, or S. californicus suhsp. Tatora) as well as from the other race of Scirpus californicus known from Peru, also from the highlands (5, 25). The variety paschalis, however occurs in both Chile and Easter Island, according to Koyama. Chile then might be the source of the Easter Island plant, unless of course, one were to assume that the movement was in the other direction. It is conceivaHe, of course, that some other variety of S. californicus was originally carried to Easter Island and there developed into var. paschalis and that this variety subsequently somehow reached Chile. One might even conceive of parallel mutations giving rise to the same variety in two ecologically similar areas. While the last word oil the taxonomy of the totora is perhaps yet to be written, certainly on the basis of our present knowledge there is no support for Heyerdahl's contention.
Was a totora actually cultivated under irrigation in coastal Peru as Heyerdahl has maintained'? So far as I can determine he has not documented this statement, nor do I find any evidence for such a claim, although it is clear that reed boats, mats, and other items made of reeds were used in coastal Peru. Towle (38) in her detailed treatment of the archaeological plant record of Peru points out that much confusion surrounds the identity of the plants used for such purposes. The cattail (Typha), also sometimes known under the name of totora; the Carrizal reed (Phragmites); certain species of Cyperus; and a species of Scirpus apparently all were used. The coastal Scirpus is probably not the same as the highland totora, although it is possible that reeds or products made from them at times were brought to the coast. I think it is unlikely that the highland totora would thrive in coastal lowlands, just as most of the other highland crops, white potatoes, oca, quinoa and so on, fail to do so.
Had the totora been cultivated on the coast, the chroniclers might be expected to be a source of in-formation. Acosta (1), Cobo (11), and Garcilasco (14) all had observed balsas of reeds in Peru and tell of such being used in the sea. Acosta tells of the "reedes, which the Indians call totora, which serves them to a thousand Vses" and gives an account of the Urus, who to this day make balsas on Lake Titicaca. He also includes the totora among the edible root plants of the region. Cobo gives a particularly good description of the mats made from reeds in Lima and Lambayeque, and further tells us that there are many different kinds of reeds in Peru; the totora in particular is used for making boats for the crossing of rivers and fishing in the ocean. But if any of them observed it in cultivation, he failed to record it.
While I have found no clear-cut evidence of the cultivation of' a totora on the coast in early times, one is cultivated there today and used for making mats and boats. Mishkin (31) mentions this without giving any detail; but Edwards (1:3), after telling that the various kinds of reeds used to build boats are common in the swampy areas of coastal Peru, goes on to describe the cultivation of one in rectangular pits at Huanchaco. Cuttings from the root crowns are used to start the plantings. According to his informants, this cultivation has been practiced since 1930 and before this time the totora was obtained from the irrigated area around Chan Chan, an important archaeological site. Since a Scirpus could grow naturally in irrigated fields, I do not take the last: statement to mean that the plants were deliberately cultivated at Chan Chan, but it does not rule out such an
interpretation. Edwards has stated that the totora grown at Huanchaco is a Scirpus; it would be interesting to know the species.'
The mode of reproduction in the totora requires some discussion in connection with how it was introduced into Easter Island. Unfortunately, but not surprisingly, little seems to have been written on reproduction in the tot ora. Heyerdahl has claimed that the plant was introduced by vegetative means. Presumably this would be by portions of rhizomes; and, indeed, if this were true, then I would agree that man is the likely agent for its introduction to Easter Island, but not necessarily the only possibility. I have found nothing, however, that would indicate that achenes are not produced. Beetle (6) has stated the culms of the totora of Lake Titicaca are largely sterile, but he (5) gives measurements for its achenes in his description. Koyama (25) presents a photograph of the achenes of the totora of Easter Island. Thus, in view of any evidence to the contrary, I assume that the totora reproduces by seed as well as vegetatively. If so, the possibilities of dispersal by air flotation, oceanic drift., or by birds immediately come to mind. Heyerdahl (18, 22) points out that Easter Island is inhabited only by sea birds4, none of which are seed eaters, but the seeds could well have been carried in mud on a bird's foot. Carlquist (10) has so admirably discussed the subject of long distance dispersal by birds that there is no need to go into detail here. He estimates that over 70% of the seed plants were introduced into Easter Island by birds, and the remainder by air flotation or drift. He also considers that the Scirpus species on Hawaii were brought in by birds, and in his book (9) he
'Since writing the above, I have been able to learn more about the cultivation of the totora in coastal Peru. Dr. Miguel Hulle has called my attention to the work of A. Sagastegui A., Manuel de las Malezas de la Costa Norperuana (univ. Nat:. de'llrujillo, Peru), in which he stales (p. 117) that the totora (S. califor'eicus ssp. Idiom) is used in certain places on the coast of Peru, "Huanchaco, Puerto Chicama, etc." I have also received specimens of the totora cultivated at Huanchaco from Terry Hamrick of the United States Peace Corps. Using Koyama's- key (25) I have identified these specimens as S. californicus ssp. californicte.s var. californicus. I have also found an article by Michael E. Moseley and Carol J. Mackey (Chan Chan, Peru's Ancient City of Kings, Nat. Geog. Mag., March, 1973) in which they mention the finding of ancient sunken gardens on the coast near Chan Chan, "where fisherman probably harvested the reeds used to make their fragile boats." This finding again raises the question as to whether reeds were actually cultivated in prehistoric times. It seems more likely, however, that the gardens would have been used for growing food plants and that sedges would have invaded them as weeds, which then could have been used by man.
'Before the vegetation was largely destroyed by man, if this is indeed what has happened, birds may have been more common on the island. Several of the early visitors, however, have remarked on the scarcity of birds. Captain Cook in his visit of 1774 observed that "land-birds, there were hardly any, and sea birds very few; these were man-of-war, tropic, and egg'birds, noddies, tern, etc." Laperouse in 1786 remarked that "the only birds which we met on the island we saw at the bottom of the crater; there were terns." Two of the crater lakes with the totoras are within one kilometer of the ocean. The passages quoted above are both reprinted in Dos Passos' account (12) of Easter Island. gives a drawing of a frigate bird nesting in a marsh and states that sedges of the sort illustrated may have reached Easter Island in mud on the bird's feet. I have not gone into the distribution of other species of Scirpus, but I note that Koyama (25) in his treatment of section Pterolepis has two other species with extensive ranges, including Pacific Islands. The distribution of Scirpus americanus ssp. monophyllus is given as western America from British Columbia to Chile, then west to Tasmania, New Zealand, and Australia. The wide distribution of these other species of Scirpus likely results from birds being the agents for dispersal.
The problem of the introduction of Polygonum acuminatum, which Heyerdahl assumes was also introduced from Peru by man through vegetative parts, is much the same as that for the totora. I have not investigated this species in any detail, but I have found that some authors (2, 36, 37, 39) have described its achenes, so I assume that it also reproduces by seed. Skottsberg (35) gives its distribution as West Indies, Central and South America, tropical and South Africa, and the Orient, although others (2, 36, 39) confine its distribution to tropical America and the West Indies. McBride (30) does not list it for Peru. It, like the totora, as others (33) have
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pointed out, could have been introduced by birds, and it could have come from any of a number of places, but probably not from Peru.
If, indeed, the totora and P. acuminatum made their appearance on Easter Island at the same time as man, there would be stronger reasons to support an introduction by man. As we have seen, Heyerdahl has stated that Polygonum did so but has not unequivocally said as much for the totora. Since no details regarding the fossil pollen record on Easter Island have been published it is impossible to evaluate Heyerdahl's statements. My letter (.Jan. 2, 1974) to O. H. Selling, requesting information on this subject, has not yet elicited a reply.
In addition to using the totora and P. acuminatum, Heyerdahl (16, 18, 19, 22) also calls upon domesticated plants to support his thesis that American Indians visited the Pacific area in prehistoric times. His arguments for several of the cultivated plants have been dealt with in some detail by Pickersgill and Bunting (3:3) who conclude that the evidence does not support his view. The sweet potato, however, is one plant that many botanists have been willing to admit was introduced into the Pacific region in prehistoric times by man, although recently some people have suggested that its introduction may have been by means of drift (34) or birds (32). Even the possibility that its introduction was post-Columbian has been raised (8). The sweet potato was on Easter Island when it was first visited by Europeans in 1722; and Heyerdahl (22) implies that it came there directly from America, although he admits the possibility of an introduction from the Marquesas Islands.
I do not think that we can rule out entirely the possibility that the totora and P. acuminatum were introduced to Easter Island by man, but if so, I do not think it very likely that they came from Peru. I feel, however, that it is far more likely that both species were introduced by birds, and that man on Easter Island came to use them through previous knowledge of their use from elsewhere, or equally likely, through "independent invention." The fact that neither the wild nor the domesticated plants lend support to Heyerdahl's thesis that Easter Island was originally settled from Peru in prehistoric times considerably weakens his case, particularly so, because he places so much emphasis on the plant evidence. On the other hand, it does not entirely destroy his case, for Easter Island could have originally been settled by Peruvians, who brought no plants with them, or, if they did so, those plants failed to survive.
1. Acosta, Father Joseph de. 1880. The natural and moral history of the Indies. Vol. 1. The Hakluyt Society, London. (originally published in 1590).
6. , 1945. Sedge boats in the Andes. Jour. N. Y. Bot. Gard. 46: 1-4.
7. , 1949, Annotated list of original descriptions in Scirpus. Amer. Midl. Nat. 41: 453-49:3.
10. . 1967. The biota of long-distance dispersal. V. Plant dispersal to Pacific Islands. Bull. Torrey Club 44: 129-162.
17. . 1958. Aku-Aku. Rand McNally, Chicago, New York, San Francisco.
18. . 1963. Prehistoric voyages as agencies for Melanesian and South American plant and animal dispersal to Polynesia, p. 2:3-35, in Plants and the Migrations of Pacific people, J. Barrau (ed.). Bishop Museum Press, Hawaii.
19. . 1968. Plant evidence for American contacts (originally published in 1964) p. 51-74, in Sea Routes to Polynesia. Rand McNally, Chicago, New York, San Francisco.
20. . 1968. An introduction to discussions of trans-oceanic contacts, p. 67-68, in Actas y Memorias, XXXVII Congreso International de Americanistas, Vol. 4, Buenos Aires.
21. . 1971. The Ra expeditions. Doubleday, Garden City, N. Y.
22. and E. N. Ferdon, Jr. (editors). 1961. Archaeology of Easter Island. Vol. 1. The School of American Research and the Museum of New Mexico. No. 24, part 1. Santa Fe, N.M.
23. Hornell, James. 1970. Water transport: origins and early evolution. David & Charles, Newton Abbot (reprint of 1946 edition).
31. Mishkin, Bernard. 1946. The contemporary Quechua, p. 411-470 in Handbook of South American Indians, Vol. 2. Smithsonian Institution, Bur. Amer. Ethno. Bull. 143.
:32. O'Brien, Patricia J. 1972. The sweet potato: its origin
36. . 1953. The phanerogams of Easter Island. p. 61-84. ibid. Vol. 2.
37. Standley, P. C. and J. A. Steyermark. 1946. Flora of Guatemala. Chicago Nat. Hist. Mus., Fieldiana 24, Part IV.
:38. Towle, Margaret A. 1961. The ethnobotany of pre-Columbian Peru. Viking Fund Publications in Anthropology No. 30.
39. Wiggins, Ira L. and Duncan M. Porter. 1971. Flora of the Galapagos Islands. Stanford University Press, California.
Harry J. Fuller, An Appreciation
Harry J. Fuller, who died on August 24, 1973, after fifteen years of incapacitating illness, was born on October 8, 1907, in St. Louis where he attended the lower schools as well as high school. He then went on to Washington University, St. Louis, for his bachelors (1929), masters (1930), and Ph.D. degrees (19:32). As an undergraduate he majored in Botany and he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. He did his graduate work at the renowned Shaw School of Botany — then in its heyday — where he came under the influence of such stalwarts as Professors George T. Moore, Jesse M. Greenman, Carroll W. Dodge, Robert Woodson, David Linder, and Edgar Anderson. In later years Fuller often regaled his colleagues with accounts of peccadilloes involving such fellow students as George Goodman, Leo Hitchcock, F. Lyle Wynd, Caroline Allen, Mildred Mathias, and botanical editor Nell Horner. His doctoral thesis was in Plant Physiology.
His first teaching appointment was at the University of Illinois where he remained the rest of his academic life, except for three war years he spent in South America in government rubber development activities. At Illinois he progressed through the ranks of instructor (young Ph.D.'s in those days were expected to season at this level), associate (a special Illinois rank, since abandoned, designed we always supposed to slow down too rapid
ascending of the academic hierarchy), assistant professor, associate professor, and professor in 1949.
In the early years at Illinois, Harry Fuller taught General Botany, a course he soon took over and fashioned as his own creative production, and Plant Taxonomy. Even though his specialty was Plant Physiology, he was an unusually able taxonomist and field botanist. Later he taught Biology for Teachers, an advanced course on growth and development, and another in Economic Botany which attracted droves of students.
Above all else Harry Fuller was a teacher, a lecturer of unusual skill and virtuosity. His style was deceptively simple and casual, yet the overall effect was to command the absolute attention of the students who were fascinated by his humor, his wit, his light touch, his warmth, even his erudition. All who came in contact with him (luring these active years will agree that he was a person who loved to teach and was enormously successful at it. I recall that in the 1940's, when we shared the lectures in General Botany, we had three, sometimes four, large lecture sections, and on any given day Fuller would deliver three or four lectures in this course and then top it off with a discussion section or two, or perhaps a seminar. The concept of a "teaching load" was unheard of in those halcyon days. He loved to lecture, and with him the lecture became a special art form which never ceased to challenge his best forensic talents. He would have agreed with Eramus in "his conviction that language is still the best medium for the transmission of thought, language not merely read, hut heard with cadence and rhythm as well as clarity and precision."
Although he appeared to be relaxed, congenial, even easy-going in his teaching, he expected high standards of performance from his students. He was not one to wallow in details (life histories were anathema to him) but he
always strove to present the larger view to his classes. He constantly sought to develop historical perspective and he ever stressed the importance of the impact of plants on man and on civilization.
Eventually he incorporated his General Botany lectures and his pedagogical ideas in two textbooks, The Plant World, first published in 1941 and now in its fifth edition, and College Botany, first printed in 1949 and revised in 1954.
All who knew him will cherish the memory of his puckish humor, his keen wit, and his love of practical jokes, nor will they forget that he was a devotee of the pun. One of his favorites emerged in the days of Constantine Alexopoulos who was then a graduate student in the Illinois department. One day he remarked to Fuller that he had had to go to the Treasurer's office to obtain an advance on his meager assistant's salary. Quick as a flash came the response — "I see, ode to a grecian urn".
Next to lecturing and other teaching came his love for travel. Although he visited other regions of the world, his favorites were the Caribbean, South America, and the American West. He spent most of his summers on these trips which included extensive color photography, yielding each season a new and rich collection of 2 x 2 slides as well as movies. These were then used in his fall and win-ter extra-mural lectures for he was a much sought-after speaker both on the campus and in the local community as well as the state.
During his early teaching years he became increasingly convinced that the methods and philosophies of schools of education were largely responsible for the poor training displayed by incoming college freshmen. His well-known essay "The Emperor's New Clothes" was delivered as a Phi Beta Kappa address in 1950 and later published in the Scientific American and elsewhere. There followed in succeeding years many another salvo whose impact in education circles always delighted him.
His contributions to the Botanical Society of America were several and noteworthy. He was the founding editor of the Plant Science Bulletin, and in this capacity he labored to attract and publish general articles on teaching and those incorporating the larger perspectives of Botany. Later he served as Treasurer of the Society. During his last long illness he was elected to the presidency of the Botanical Society but because he was incapacitated, the annual meeting of the Society bestowed on him the special title of Honorary President (1958). He was elected chair-man of the Botanical Section and Vice President of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 1957.
His wife Mary Ledgerwood, whom he married in 1931, preceded him in death (in 1967) but he is survived by his daughter Pamela Rawles of Libertyville, Illinois, and three grandchildren. His life has inspired a play The Spark of His Fire by Evelyn Swedlund (Vantage Press, New York, 1973 — the book also includes two of his essays and an excellent photograph of HJF).
In Harry Fuller's death, American Botany has lost one of its most colorful figures; his University, a gifted teacher; his students, a beloved mentor; and his friends, a delightful, lively colleague whose like will not be seen for many a clay.
Scientific Aid To Indochina
Scientists the world over acknowledge a common bond that transcends national boundaries and ideological or political differences. This international mentality, together with the traditional American predisposition for extending aid to wartorn lands form the rationale on which a committee for Scientific Aid to Indochina (SAI) has recently been established. Formally a task force under the aegis of the Scientists' Institute for Public Information (SIPI), SAI will seek to
Since the United States Agency for International Development has already set up agricultural and technical aid throughout South Vietnam, SAI feels that the American public generally and the scientific community specifically will want to share in a private effort to extend such aid to other parts of Indochina as well. A start has been made. In response to an invitation from the government of the Democratic Republic of (North) Vietnam, SIPI/SAI sent Zoologist E. W. Pfeiffer and Botanist A. H. Westing to visit that country from 28 July till 16 August 1973. Logic dictated such a beginning as conditions in Laos and Cambodia are still ton unsettled to allow similar visits. Pfeiffer and Westing were received with interest, appreciation, and cooperation. In' formal meetings with the State Committee for Science and Technique, informal discussions with scientists in institutes and universities, and a thorough investigative tour of the countryside, including areas under the control of the Provisional Revolutionary Government of South Vietnam, they asked "how best can the U.S. scientific community aid in rehabilitating Indochina?".
After balancing their pressing needs against the options available for meeting them, the State Committee offered a plan, which has been relayed by Pfeiffer and Westing to SIPI/SAI and subsequently adopted as SAI's initial project. Indochina with its agriculturally based economy has been most particularly crippled by the devastation of farm land. Productive use of the land could be far more effectively restored with the guidance of a modern research institute of agricultural botany. The State Committee has proposed to provide a building in which SAI will set up laboratories of plant physiology, phytochemistry, and plant genetics. SAI will provide equipment, chemicals, and seeds. Prof. A. W. Galston, a Yale University plant physiologist, has been invited to travel to the DRVN in the spring to direct establishment of the institute and give technical instruction. The institute will be the sole property and province of the DRVN's State Committee for Science and Technique with no restrictions whatever.
The committee has also submitted a request for certain books and journal subscriptions and indicated a strong interest in establishing direct information exchange between DRVN and U.S. scientists.
In addition, Pfeiffer and Westing learned of an emergency need for metal detectors. In farm lands everywhere they traveled, unexploded ordnance lies buried, a major hazard that must be removed before the fields can be restored to use. An SAI subcommittee is checking the specifications and safety measures for such detectors, preparatory to shipping of them to the DRVN.
Realistic in scope, these projects are nonetheless certain to be beneficial. SIPI/SAI welcomes the inquiries and invites the support of scientists and institutions interested in becoming a part of this effort.
Scientific Aid to Indochina, A task force of Scientists' Institute for Public Information, 38 East Sixty-eighth Street, New York, N.Y. 10021, (212 + 249-3200)
The writer is one of the 900 charter members of the American Academy of Microbiology. It may be assumed that that is the reason for this commentary following the publication of "Who is a Botanist" in a recent number of the Plant Science Bulletin. One might say that I have a problem in sematics. I received my doctorate in a Botany Department (thus I am a botanist) in which I carried out a project in the ecology (thus I am an ecologist) of fungi (thus I am a mycologist). As a mycologist I obtained a position in the Robert A. Taft Sanitary Engineering Center and later the American Academy of Microbiology came into existence. Before charter membership privileges ran out I became eligible and since my supervisor was on the board (he was a bacteriologist) I thus became a char-ter member. The framed certificate looked pretty and theoretically added status. I never applied for certification in mycology since I did not consider myself a clinical mycologist, never approached the field in that way, and was encouraged not to become involved. I never tried to get certification in the program of the Society for Industrial Microbiology of which I am still a member.
Bacteriologists played a somatic trick on mycologists, protozoologists, algologists and even other bacteriologists, by blanketing all disciplines under one label, then using "microbiology" to mean largely "bacteriology". In microbiology there is a need on the part of laboratory personnel from the lowest dishwasher to the highest specialist to become certified. On the other hand, pure botany departments with no entangling alliances with zoologists or bacteriologists do not have these problems of status. At administrative levels where one or the other may dominate the botanists, there may be a need for clear-cut roles, but this is usually understood by all concerned. A person trained to do a job likes to get credit for doing a good job, not to let that credit become attached to the M.D. authorized to sign the report. There are all sorts of intermediate types of credit-grabbing which it is thought certification will cancel out, but that is merely the idea. Apparently the program caught the eye of other professions. Soil Science Society of America has considered it and may have gone into a program. Now the Horticulturists and maybe others will follow suit.
I assume that a certified horticulturalist is one who will have earned his credentials in an accredited college totally through graduate programs or through apprenticeships with reputable firms. There will probably be a variety of ways of attaining the prized certificate. The company composed of certificated personnel or having such personnel on the payroll, will have a superior advantage over a company without such personnel. Of course, the possession of a certificate will restrict the activity of the holder to the province of the certificate. Have you ever met a situation in which your neighbors, casual acquaintances, or even trades people, because you are known to be a botanist, thought that you had the key to any and all problems of botany, horticulture, biology, local and national politics, and even moon-exploration? This will hopefully get you "off the hook", but you will not have time to produce the documentation necessary to prove it before your interrogator's face falls to the floor in-credulous of this communication gap. Also, what IBY questionnaire even hinted that a certificate would be required? With the horticulturalists I can see some reason to have such a program of certification since professionals who got that way "legitimately" through schooling and labor are in a position to be pushed out by others who in their own way "legitimately" by labor and an innate uncanny ability to handle plants have risen to relatively high positions in the profession.
I cannot see any reason for botanists to be concerned with such a certification program. Of course, I have not been in any position to discuss the matter with anyone or hear anyone discuss it. I would think that a prospective employer would want to see transcripts and recommendations and other vitae in addition to any certificate which should only indicate adeptness in one or more administrative manipulation which could or could not be regarded as demonstrating a technique for killing time!
I hope botanists have more productive matters to discuss than any proposed "certification requirements" for being called a botanist!
Wm. Bridge Cooke
A CORNELL UNIVERSITY BIOLOGIST, Richard Korf, has designed a special transfer sheet called BIOPLATE, which he believes meets 909/ of biologists' requirements in preparing plates for publication or slides for lectures. The letter and number frequencies are specifically designed with these uses in mind (how often have you run out of B's or zeros on a standard lettering sheet?). Letters and numbers appear in several sizes and typefaces, and even Greek letter (many micron marks) are provided, along with an assortment of symbols useful in making graphs and distributional maps.
The use of transfer letters and symbols in preparing drawings, graphs, and photographic plates for publication has nearly completely replaced hand-lettering and lettering devices. One major problem is that the symbols and letters that a biologist needs are usually scattered on many different sheets of transfer letters, requiring his to have a large stock of such sheets on hand. This, BIOPLATE is manufactured by Prestype, Inc., and is available only from Mycotaxon, P. O. Box 264, Ithaca, N.Y. 14850 in either black or white, at $3.00 per sheet, postpaid to any address in the world.
ST. JOHN'S COLLEGE, NIGERIA has made a special plea to members of the Botanical Society for help in obtaining standard botany textbooks or general biology text-books by American authors. Any help would be most appreciated. Textbooks should be sent to Mr. Francis Enebeli, St. John's College, Fugar via Agenebode Mid-west, Nigeria, West Africa.
THE BIOLOGICAL PHOTOGRAPHIC ASSOCIATION 44th ANNUAL MEETING will be held August 26-29, 1974 at the New York Hilton Hotel with the theme "New Dimensions in Biophotography". Those desiring further information should write to Antol Herskovitz, General Chairman, Health Science Center, SUNY at Stoney Brook, Stoney Brook, N.Y. 11790.
THE SEVENTH ANNUAL MEETING OF THE AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF STRATIGRAPHIC PALYNOLOGISTS INC., will be held iii Calgary, Alberta, Canada from October 15th to 19th, 1974. The Calgary Meeting Committee hopes that members of your organization or society will be able to attend and/or con-tribute to our program. We hope also that you will give notice of the meeting in your journal or newsletter. Our meeting will begin with a scenic-geologic trip to the Banff region (Rocky Mountains). Two days of technical sessions follow, and the meeting will conclude October 19th with a field excursion to Drumheller, Alberta, site of the famous dinosaur/badlands region. Our technical program will feature contributed papers on Arctic Palynology, the Palynology of the Jurassic-Cretaceous boundary, as well
as a variety of other contributed and invited papers. Invited papers will include these topics: Background Geology of the Canadian Arctic; Devonian Arctic Palynolog_y; and Morphology and Taxonomy of Fungal Spores and the Application to Stratigraphic Palynology.
Calgary is accessible by air from various American and Canadian connecting points. Situated near the Rockies and being the centre of the Canadian Oil Exploration Industry, makes the city an ideal site for the meeting. The Calgary Committee invites inquiries from interested persons. Please contact either Dr. W. W. Brideaux, I.S.P.G., 3303 - 33rd Street N.W., Calgary, Alberta T2L 2A7, Canada, or Dr. L. V. Hills, Department of Geology, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta T2N OZ7, Canada, for further details.
"ARTISTS FROM THE ROYAL BOTANIC GARDENS, KEW," will open Monday, April 1, in Carnegie-Mellon University's Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation.
The show — on the penthouse floor of the Hunt Library — will be open to the public without charge from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays until September 20 inclusive.
The 168 pieces of botanical art and illustrations to be displayed represent the work of 39 artists, many of them primarily botanists and typical of those who have drawn plants at Kew and whose work is in the immense Kew collection.
THE 1974 GREENMAN AWARD was presented to Ihsan A. Al-Shehbaz, University of Baghdad, for the publication "The biosystematics of the genus Thelypodium (Cruciferae)" (Contr. Gray Herb. 204::3-148. 1973.)
The Award of $250 is presented each year by the Alumni Association of the Missouri Botanical Garden. It recognizes the best paper in plant systematics based on a doctoral dissertation published during the previous year. Papers published in 1974 are now being considered for the 1975 award.
Dr. Thomas E. Lockwood has joined the Botany Department faculty at the University of Illinois at Urvana, not at Indiana University as indicated in the December Plant Science Bulletin.
Dr. Karl J. Niklas, will be joining the staff of' the New York Botanical Garden; he will be a Fulbright Fellow to England prior to arriving at the NYBG.
Dr. Arthur W. Galston has been designated Eaton Professor of Botany at Yale. This is one of the oldest endowed chairs at Yale, having originated in 1864. It is named for Daniel Cady Eaton, formerly Professor of Botany at Yale. Eaton, the first incumbent, held the chair from 1864 to 1895.
APPLICATIONS AND NOMINATIONS are sought for the position of Department Head, Department of Plant Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas 77843. The Department of Plant Sciences is charged with the responsibility of teaching, research and extension in the disciplines of Genetics, Plant Pathology, and Plant Physiology. The Department has a strong program in Ex-
tension Plant Pathology. Qualifications of the applicant should include evidence of scholarship in teaching and research and a thorough understanding of the application of basic Plant Science to Agriculture. The applicant must be progressive in his attitude towards the three disciplines and overall responsibilities of the Department.
Administrative experience would be an obvious asset, but consideration will be based primarily on the ability of the applicant to direct and coordinate such diverse activities as teaching, research, and extension in the three disciplines of the Department of Plant Sciences. An interest in students cannot be overstressed.
Available September 1, 1974, nominations or ap-
plications for this position should be sent to: Dr. Richard A. Frederiksen Chairman, Search Committee Department of Plant Sciences Texas A&M University
College Station, Texas 77843
THE DEPARTMENT OF CELLULAR AND COMPARITIVE BIOLOGY, Division of Biological Sciences, State University of New York at Stony Brook, expects to make an appointment at the Assistant Professor level in the area of higher plant developmental biology-physiology. Although the exact subdiscipline is not critical, each successful candidate will be expected to show exceptional aptitude for and commitment to teaching and promise of a level of achievement in original research that will place him or her among the leaders in the field. Botanists who are active in research on higher eukaryotic systems are encouraged to apply for the position.
The University is an equal opportunity employer; women and members of minority groups are encouraged to apply. Please advise potential candidates to send a copy of their curriculum vitae, letters from three professionals and reprints or copies of any papers they have published to A. D. Krikorian, Search Committee, Department of Cellular and Comparative Biology, State University of New York at Stony Brook, 11790.
THE UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL, POPULATION, AND ORGANISMIC BIOLOGY will have an opening (substitute for a faculty member who is on leave) for an assistant professor interested in tracheophytes and in teaching in a large General Biology course. Employment is for the two-year period from fall 1974 but may become permanent. Please send vitae and three letters of recommendation to Dr. John Marr, Dept. of EPO Biology, Univ. of Colo., Boulder, Colo. 80302.
MITRAKOS, K. and W. SHROPSHIRE, JR. (eds.). Phytochrome. Academic Press, London and New York. 1972.
This volume contains twenty-three manuscripts presented by lecturers at a Symposium held in Eretria, Greece, September 1971, under the sponsorship of NATO and the University of Athens. Most of the papers cover several aspects of a given topic (average length, 27 pages) so that the volume more resembles a compendium than a symposium. There are Author, Subject, and Biological Materials indices. All parts are in English.
At the very least it is still the case that the phytochrome pigment absorbs red light at low intensities and changes to a molecular form which will absorb far-red light or initiate a physiological response (Butler,
Lhoste"'). Many physiological characteristics of the pigment system were delimited by doing action spectra of red induced far-red reversible environmental responses of plants (Borthwick, Shropshire). Some of the "red far-red" low intensity ("phytochrome") responses have been explained using metabolic models (Borthwick, Yamamoto and Tezuka, H. Smith, Metrakos), others by gene action (Schropfer), some by membrane models (Borthwick, Haupt), and still others by changes in hormone systems (Fredericq and DeGreef, Black and Vlitos). The fact that phytochrome regulated processes such as chlorophyll biosynthesis (Virgin), flowering (Vince), seed germination (Rollin), and circadian rhythms (Queiroz) are not subject to explanation with these simple models leads to summary statements such as "a photoperiodic response requires control by phytochrome operating eventually at different metabolic points" (Queiroz), or more elegantly "one might think of phytochrome as a master control which keeps the plant in tune with its surroundings through interplay with some of the various other regulatory systems" (Borthwick).
Probably the most important developments explored in depth at the symposium were the interaction of phytochrome with membrane control systems, and the problems involved in the complete purification of phytochrome. In situ phytochrome has been shown to react rapidly (seconds) with physiologically significant membrane systems in several cases (Borthwick, Haupt), and has also been shown to be localized on membrane surfaces by immunological techniques (Pratt in Borthwick). Purification techniques have assumed extra-ordinary importance for antibody preparation and for future studies of phytochrome primary reactions in reconstituted cell-free systems (Rudiger; Briggs, Gardner, and Hopkins). Phytochrome systems observed using in vivo spectrophotometry are also discussed (Hillman, Spruit).
Generally, the editing is outstanding; however, a few errors are worth noting. A. Apostolakis, listed as a lecturer, makes no presentation; J. A. DeGreef is unfortunately deleted from the Contents; and W. L. Butler (U.C.S.D.; La Jolla, Calif.) is listed with a temporary Netherlands address. An addition which would have added greatly to the volume would have been printing excerpts of the question-and-answer period. All in all, this is an outstanding volume (even though some U.S.A. laboratories are not represented, and the volume suffers), well worth the price ($7.50).
James A. McArthur Fla. Intl. Univ.
"names in parentheses are those of symposium lecturers presenting topic mentioned.
DEAN, H. L. Biology of Plant. Laboratory exercises. Third ed. Wm. C. Brown. Dubuque, Iowa. 1973. xiv + 278 pp. Spiral. $4.95.
Biology and Botany Departments still fortunate enough to be offering general botany will definitely want to consider Dean's laboratory manual. As the latest in a series of laboratory manuals, Dean's book is a challenging one and so is more suitable for a major course than one designed for non-major science students. The manual contains 45 exercises: 26 on structure and function, 16 on the plant kingdon, one on ecology and two on genetics. Instructors will find the appendices useful and complete. They include lists of supplies, chemicals and their recipes, suppliers, a list of prepared slides needed, and a guide for growing plants. The latter appendix includes planting instructions, time in days to reach various developmental stages, and special treatments required for certain plants.
The laboratory exercises are well written and are followed by questions and an assortment of comprehensive references. The references include major reference works, guides, some reviewed papers and include publications through 1972.
In the preface, Dean states that, since beginning students will spend an inordinate amount of time making acceptable drawings, it is preferable that they refer to prepared drawings so as to allow more time for concentrated study and analysis of the material. The drawings accordingly provided with the exercises are of high quality and will certainly provide a good standard for students who wish to attempt. their own illustrations.
Introductions to the concepts of the exercise topics are minimal and will require a brief supplementary introduction by the laboratory instructor if the subject has not been previously discussed in the lecture section.
Altogether, Dean has produced a manual which deserves to be widely used.
Richard C. Keating Southern Illinois University (Edwardsville)
EVANS, G. CLIFFORD. Quantitative analysis of plant growth. Univ. of California Press, Berkeley. 1972. 260 pp. $22.00.
Books sometimes reflect the personality of an author. This may be especially true for books that cover a specific topic where the author spent a significant portion of his life to make original contributions to improve the effectiveness of a philosophic or experimental approach.
Books sometimes reflect the atmosphere of the place surrounding the author. This may be especially the case for a place like Cambridge University, where most professors work from distinguished halls of medieval colleges, out of halls with gothic forms and dimensions that create an atmosphere of wholistic accuracy to be presented in beauty and minute detail.
The book by Clifford Evans on the quantitative analysis of plant growth will conceptually be much better understood and appreciated by the young reader if he keeps these introductory statements in mind.
The thorough treatment of the subject matter is guaranteed by the size of the book. All possible important facts and problems of plant growth analysis are treated in 734 pages.
The book is divided into five parts: Introduction, Experimental Techniques, Analysis of Data, Problems posed by the growing plant, Appendices. The first 4 parts are subdivided into 32 chapters, each one dealing in depth with one specific topic or problem. In the core parts of the book, Experimental Techniques and Data Analysis, all major aspects are treated in a clear and pleasant form. If, in a future edition the hook could be condensed, it probably could be cut down to these two parts only.
The most important part for the American student is the presentation of data analysis for which the British plant scientists of the F. F. Blackman and V. H. Black-man schools are so well known. Although the computer age has revolutionized the analytical techniques in America (and probably in Europe as well), much of the important literature uses the analytical methods and philosophies compiled by Dr. Evans. While the American teacher will probably abstain from presenting all these details to his class, the American student will gainfully read the many details and variations possible in plant growth data interpretation. Especially useful will be the "brown section" within the appendices of the book that contain among other useful information the symbols and termini used in the plant growth analysis literature.
This book is one of the best examples of cross reference organization I know. The author has done his best to guide the reader from one part of the book to the pertinent portions in other sections. The bibliography is as
European as the books of American authors are American. In this respect is the book a welcome supplement to our standard reading.
The price of the book is prohibitive for its use as graduate text in advanced ecology or plant physiology. The book invites, however, to some extent, a self study of the subject matter. Much of the presentation, especially the investment analogies, are probably taken from the class lectures of the author. Since the normal academic lecturer will use similar approaches himself, he will find these portions superfluous in a supporting text book.
The book should find a place in the libraries of all botany departments. It will certainly be used in the future as key reference for plant growth analysis papers.
Helmut Lieth University of North Carolina
HARVEY, M. J. and J. McLACHLON (eds.). Chondrus crispus. Nova Scotia Inst. of Science, Halifax. 1973. Paperback $6.00, Bound, $9.00. 155 pp.
The book resulted from a day-long panel discussion held on June 20, 1972 during the annual program of the Canadian Botanical Association and Canadian Society of Plant Physiologists. It is a small book in which five chapters are primarily reviews of published research on the biology, cytology, ecology, physiology, biochemistry, and ultrastructure-histochemistry of Chrondrus crispus. A sixth chapter deals with a review of the chemistry of the phycocolloid carrageenan extracted from Chondrus.
As with many edited books, the individual chapters are uneven with regard to depth of review. The chapters dealing with cytology and genetics, by L. A. Hanic, ecology (by A. C. Mathieson and J. S. Prince) and with the physiology and biochemistry of Chondrus crispus (R. G. Buggelin and J. S. Craigie) present a most thorough review. In all cases, the editors have included an itemized summary of each chapter so that the reader can easily sum up the chapter.
Although the quality of printing is adequate, many of the photographs especially the light and electron micrographs suffer. This is too had because some of the electron micrographs of E. M. Gordon and E. L. McCandless showing cell fine structure appear to be quite good. The histochemical localizations of carrageenan by the same authors also is difficult to determine because of fuzzy light micrographs. However, it is most interesting that Gordon and McCandless found k carrageenan mainly in the intercellular wall regions while k carrageenan occurs in the immediate cell walls.
This small book is modestly priced (in paperback) and does present the interested researcher a good review of research progress of an economically important red seaweed.
Clinton J. Dawes University of South Florida
HUI-LIN LI. Trees of Pennsylvania, the Atlantic States and the Lake States. University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia. 1972. $17.50.
A scientific book with the artistic touches that this one contains is a rare commodity. The photographs of sycamore bark on the end papers and the high contrast print of the photograph of a gray birch stand used as the frontispiece and dust jacket are quite striking. It is unfortunate that the book does not maintain the high quality of the first eye-catching introduction.
The text describes in good detail 118 species of native and naturalized trees to be found in Pennsylvania. In addition, the generic descriptions contain references to and brief descriptions of many commonly planted introduced species. The omission of detailed description of such wide-spread species as the apple and pear weakens this book somewhat. The text includes the following categories for each of the 118 major species; habit, bark, stem, winter buds, leaves, flowers, fruit, distribution, habitat, and cultivation notes. The descriptions of flowers and fruits in the conifers may be disconcerting to some botanists and is misleading to those laymen who have little or no botanical training. Li consistently uses the term "prefers" to describe the habitat where each species is most likely to be found. Such anthropomorphism in a scientific book seems unnecessary.
The author's wife, C. Y. Hsi Li, has prepared beautiful line drawings for each of the species illustrating a leafy branch, winter buds, flowers, and fruits. The line drawings are all consistently well-executed and generally agree with the text descriptions. The major exception is that of the size of the branch with winter buds. These drawings are usually designed X'h or XI but more often, in terms of the text, should have been Xl or X2. In general, an exact magnification is not given for flowers and this could cause considerable trouble for people unacquainted with the plants because so many tree flowers are minute and inconspicuous. In a few instances the drawings do not include some critical feature noted in the text or keys which would be of value to the user of the book. For instance, the following are not shown: the prominent stipules on Salix nigra, the chambered pith and the notched leaf scar of Juglans nigra, and conspicuous stipules on Plantanus occidentalis. The following in-consistencies between text and drawings should be noted: Salix lucida is said to possess five stamens per bract but only four are shown, Betula lenta and B. nigra are described as possessing catkins in clusters of three but the illustrations show one, two or three catkins, Ulmus americana is said to have seven-eight stamens per flower but the illustration shows only six, and Gymnocladus dioicus is described as even pinnate but is illustrated as off pinnate. In some cases these discrepancies are probably due to natural variation which might have been given greater recognition.
The glossary is generally good and is very inclusive but has a few weak definitions such as those for digitate, involucre, leaf base, leaf scar, -merous, pungent, punctate, receptacle, stipule scar, stoma, tripinnate, and umbo. Another viewpoint would have led to very different definitions for centimeter, cone, disk, meter, millimeter.
There are a few typographical errors but the most serious one is found on page 84 where Betula populifolia is referred to as B. populiferra.
While the line drawings and most of the text are generally well clone, the poor quality of a significant percentage of the photographs and the internal in-consistencies among text, illustrations, and keys are too numerous to allow an over-all good rating by this reviewer. Lastly, the size and price of this book preclude its use in the field.
Wayne L. Handles Rutgers University (Newark)
MILLER, LAWRENCE P. (ed.) Volume II Phytochemistry - Organic Metabolites. Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 1973. 399 pages plus indices (45 pages), 77 figs. $24.50.
'twelve authors, in ten chapters, provide good to excellent reviews of a wide assortment of plant constituents as known in the early part of the 1970's. Especially useful are the separate indices to authors, plant and animal names: Amino Acids (L. Fowden) 29 pp; Flowering Plant Proteins (D. Boulter) :30 pp; Purines and Pyrimidines (D. Wang) 56 pp; Alkaloids (D. W. Hughes and K. Genest) 52
pp; Steroids (E. Heftman) 55 pp; Lipids (R. C. Jack) 26 pp; Terpenes (H. J. Nicholas) 55 pp; Rubber, Gutta Percha and Chicle (B. L. Archer and B. G. Audley) 33 Ph; Flavonoids (J. B. Harborne) 36 pp; and Miscellaneous Volatile Plant Products (H. J. Nicholas) 19 pp. References are of various types ranging from complete citation (4 chapters) to a listing of only journal, volume and first page (6 chapters). Many of these authors are leading authorities in their fields and the others have done uniformly impressive jobs of organizing, digesting and summarizing the enormous literature. There are extensive structural formulae and it seems quite free from errors.
In the editors preface he states that: "Advances in plant chemistry are progressing at such a rapid pace that it is impossible for a worker in one phase of the subject to keep up with discoveries being made in fields other than his own." This, of course, is quite true and speaks for rapid publication of review books of this sort. However, a couple of hours spent with the lists of references at the end of the chapters shows that rapid publication was not realized. Over 2,100 authors are cited in these ten chapters yet there are no references to any paper appearing in 1973, a single reference (a hook) for 1972, and only 15 with dates of 1971 (and eight of these are in an addendum to one chapter). Only 60 papers are cited with publication dates in 1970 and 22 of these are in the addendum to one chapter. In fact, two chapters have no references in the 1970's at all and one has no paper cited more recent than 1968!
From the dates of the cited literature this volume should have appeared early in 1971 rather than in May 1973. A clue to this problem appears in the preface where it says: "In a work of this magnitude [the three volume series], with many authors (38) involved, there have naturally been some unavoidable delays in completing the manuscript for submission to the publisher". Considering the quality of the chapters, the reviewer is more inclined to congratulate Miller for his task of coordinating the spasmodic submission of the :38 authors than to fault him for their delays.
This is an excellent volume, authoratively written, well indexed and late in publication. The price seems to be in line with todays market and this volume should be in institutional libraries and in the office of the serious phytochemist interested in organic metabolites.
Jerry W. McClure Miami University (Ohio)
PLANT SCIENCE BULLETIN LIFE SCIENCE BUILDING UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH FLORIDA TAMPA, FLORIDA 33620