En EspaŅol

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.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Monday - March 28, 2011

From: Bowling Green, KY
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: General Botany
Title: How is native range changed in the scientific record?
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

I am accessioning Pachysandra procumbens for the Baker Arboretum. These plants were made from cuttings of a native stand here in Warren County (Western KY). How does the record get amended to reflect a greater native distribution?

ANSWER:

Scientific data, such as botanical names, physical characteristics and species range, are all entered into the literature through valid publication.  This usually means that an article is published in a scientific (peer reviewed) journal or other publication, though valid publication can sometimes be accomplished in other ways such as publication of scholarly books or presentation of papers at scientific conferences.

Native range information can also be increased by collection, cataloging and preservation of herbarium specimens.  Databased herbarium specimens are the basis for most scientifically valid range maps.  For example, the range map for Pachysandra procumbens (Allegheny spurge) on the USDA Plants web page for Kentucky shows the species as occuring in Warren County as well as a number of other counties.  As herbaria add wild-growing specimens collected from other counties and states, the information about those new data eventually make their way into the scientific literature and onto online range maps.

 

More General Botany Questions

What is white sticky substance in the Mandevilla vine?
June 15, 2012 - When I was watering my Mandevilla one of the vines broke and there was a white, sticky substance that came out of the vine. I was just curious as to what that is.
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants on temperature
October 18, 2005 - Mr.Smarty Plants, I am a student at Hill Freedman Middle school and I have a science fair coming up. I really need a answer to this question "What effect does temperature have on the growth of plants...
view the full question and answer

Water-saving strategies of drought-tolerant plants
April 04, 2014 - Although "drought tolerant" plants are fairly well documented, it's clear that many different strategies are responsible, such as a huge root system (like Mesquite). I'm interested in learning the...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants on aceae
March 21, 2005 - How is the family suffix "-aceae", as in Asteraceae, pronounced? I find disagreeing claims in my searches- "ay-see-ee" and "ay-see-ay" seem to be the most common, but I've also seen just "ay-...
view the full question and answer

Starting a sweet potato in water in Duluth MN
April 11, 2011 - I am trying to start a sweet potato plant in water. I noticed 3 days after it's in water, there is white finger like(hairy) areas at the tip of the bottom of the potato and also on the sides. I have...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center