Tag - Taxonomy

Image: Wikimedia Commons.

Botany, a man’s world?

What do you make of this: ‘In the 18th century, not yet 30 years old, she became the first woman to travel around the world. Along the way she helped collect thousands of plant specimens, some of which were new species...

Answer: Not Lamarck(!)

Answer: Not Lamarck(!)

OK, that’s the answer, what was the question? Who invented the dichotomous key for identification? Well, as anybody who has taught students about keys and their use as tools for plant ID (or even for animals if you must...

Chris McKenna/Wikimedia Commons.

Latin is dead (Official!)

It’s been a feature of botany that ever since the language of Ancient Rome became the lingua franca of the educated classes, descriptions of new plants were published in Latin. Sadly, new rules emanating from the august...

Botany: A Blooming History

Last night at 9pm hell froze over – the BBC broadcast a programme about plant taxonomy on a mainstream TV network. Did you see it? I thought not, it was tucked away on BBC4. It was excellent and well worth...

Image: Robert Ricker, US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The lingua franca of taxonomy

Image: Robert Ricker, US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Encouraging students to face their fears and take up the challenge of confronting scientific names (no longer should we call them Latin names...

You can look but not touch

You can look but not touch

via iPhylo “The Plant List () has been released today, complete with glowing press releases. The list includes some 1,040,426 names. I eagerly looked for the Download button, but none is to be found. You can grab...