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

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Saturday - July 15, 2006

From: Silvis, IL
Region: Midwest
Topic: General Botany
Title: Drawings of Illinois native wildflowers
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I am looking for line drawings of Illinois Native Wildflowers to use for educational material for visitors to our new City Park. We plan to have signs throughout the park describing how Native Americans and early pioneer settlers relied on available plants to cure illness. I find color pictures but few line drawings. Where can I find line drawings that are available for this use?

ANSWER:

For many of the plants in the USDA Plants Database, there are line drawings that are downloadable as high-resolution TIFF files. For instance, you can see the drawing for Prairie blue-eyed grass (Sisyrinchium campestre), an Illinois native.

eFloras, the online version of Flora of North America, also has line drawings, although they do not have all families published on the internet yet. Here is the Sisyrinchium campestre page in eFloras and its illustration. You can check the Flora of North America website to see the status of volumes under production. You should probably contact the Flora of North America Project about using their illustrations, although I would imagine it is legitimate as long as they are properly cited.
 

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