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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Friday - July 08, 2005

From: Mountain Ranch, CA
Region: California
Topic: General Botany
Title: Smarty Plants on Wildflowerology
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I know there is a word for everything, but I can't find the offical word for the study of wildflowers. Wildflowerology just doesn't sound right. Can you help?

ANSWER:

How about Feraflorisology? or Indigenaphytology? OK, I just made those up. The consensus around the Wildflower Center is that there is no special word for the study of wildflowers.

Here are some accepted names for the study of plants or parts of plants:

Phytology (or Botany)--the study of plants
Dendrology--the study of trees
Dendrochronology--the study of the age of trees
Pomology--the study of fruits
Algology--the study of algae
Palynology--the study of pollen
Aeropalynology--the study of pollen grains and spores in the atmosphere
Bryology--the study of bryophytes
Phytosociology--the study of the relationship of plants

For a list of other "-ologies", you can visit Wikipedia, the free online encylopedia.

I suppose we will have to settle for Botanist, or Phytologist, who specializes in wildflowers or native plants.
 

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