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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

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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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Friday - May 30, 2014

From: St Croix Falls, WI
Region: Midwest
Topic: General Botany, Wildflowers
Title: Define monoculture from St. Croix Falls, WI
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

What do you call a dense stand or carpet of one species of wildflower? Our botany professor told us but that was 40 years ago!

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants believes the word you are looking for is "monoculture." There really is no such thing as a true monoculture; other species of whatever - wild flowers, weeds, agricultural crops - are going to creep in. In fact, a pure monoculture is not necessarily a good thing. Here are some articles that expand on the definition

Wikipedia  'Monoculture' is the agricultural practice of producing or growing a single crop or plant species over a wide area and for a large number of consecutive years. It is widely used in modern industrial agriculture and its implementation has allowed for large harvests from minimal labour.

Carbon Trade Watch - Monocultures

Science Daily - Monoculture

As you can see, it is mostly a term referring to industrial agriculture for the growth of food. Probably a more useful term for your purpose is "a whole bunch of the same wildflower."

 

 

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