a publication of the botanical research institute of texas volume 21, no. 1, 2010
D i re ct o r’ s\ N ot e
Green and Wonderful from the Roof (ground) Up!
Illustrated Texas Floras Project. A major publication program exists as well as one of the most significant education and outreach programs in the nation, considering our still relatively small size. This did not happen by accident, and where we go from here will not happen by accident either. We got to where we are because of donors, many of whom I hope are reading this column right now. You have made this possible so far and will hopefully join many others who will help make the future voyage possible. We have also gotten here because we now have a magnificent staff who are remarkable—every one and in every possible way. There is a sense of community and mission as we build what we know will be a golden age for this organization. We will ultimately be able to grow from the approximately one million herbarium specimens we have now to three million. Our research program is conceptually based on a three-legged stool of Floras, Plants and Peoples, and Landscape Ecology. But it has been missing two legs (Plants and Peoples and Landscape Ecology) of the three-legged stool. We look forward to adding the two new legs to our current Floras leg to complete our well-integrated program.
table of contents
Silver-leaf Nightshade (Solanum elaeagnifolium)
Green Begins Here
Revising on Boggy Ground: Updating 1988 “National List of Plant Species that Occur in Wetlands”
Your cup of tea? Treatment for flu in your backyard? Just watch where you step!
It’s a Jungle Out There! BRIT’s 2010 Award of Excellence
A Tribute: Henri Eugene Liogier de Sereys Alain
BRIT Breaks Ground, Gently
BRIT Library is Fertile Ground for a Growing Collection
Fête du Vin Sparkles with Vintage Traditions and New Flavors
Looking Forward… to the New BRIT Herbarium
New Education Programs Go the Distance
The Ever-Expanding Andes to Amazon Biodiversity Program
PRESSing Matters: Press Success at Home and on the Road
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canyon. Maybe that is where I became a botanist to begin with, but in any case, the literal act of setting a plant that morning of the groundbreaking into one of the rectangular trays brought that memory back like a bolt of lightning. So, that symbolic act was cathartic both for the institute, that I have been privileged to be part of, as well as for me personally. And what will rise from that bit of ground where the ceremony was held will be the most significant and visionary botanical institution in the world. It may well achieve a LEED Platinum level, which would make it the only project in the area with that designation. The building itself will be a teaching tool, literally from the ground up to the roof. Consider that BRIT started in the early 1990s in about 14,000 sq. ft. of warehouse space in what was then a less vibrant part of downtown Fort Worth. Now, imagine where we will be able to go in a 69,000 sq. ft., state-of-the art building on 5.7 acres landscaped with a native prairie and situated adjacent to our many good friends, colleagues, and collaborators at the Fort Worth Botanic Garden! When I came, there were three staff members and a general operating budget of about $175,000. Some 15 years later, we have nearly 30 staff members (about to go to 35 in 2010), a general operating budget of about $2 million, and a half dozen major research projects. These projects include work in the Peruvian Amazon, Papua New Guinea, and an ongoing, very important
As Yogi Berra was once alleged to have said: it was déjà vu all over again…at least for me! The highlight of the groundbreaking ceremony held on the 14th of December was symbolically setting seedlings into several of the rectangular trays that will eventually cover the roof of the “Think Block” Sy Sohmer (research, education, advancement, press) of the new building. That act transported me right back to when I was around 4 or 5 years old. We lived on the third floor of a five story walk-up apartment in the South Bronx in New York City. It was one of those old buildings that came equipped with external steel structures that you could step out on from the bedroom window and follow all of the way down to the ground. They were usually painted a garish orange and called “fire escapes.” How the inspiration came to my little fouryear-old brain I do not know, but I decided to grow plants on our landing. The man who had a cheese and egg store on our block saved me the rectangular wooden boxes in which a certain kind of block cheese came. I would then take my little sand shovel to the park on the corner and laboriously dig up soil—a mixture that I am sure was full of nutrients from all the pets that also used that park! I planted simple things; not much could survive the lack of light in that urban
A publication of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas 500 East 4th Street, Fort Worth, Texas 76102 www.brit.org 817.332.4441; Metro 817.429.3200; Fax 817.332.4112 Robert J George, EDITOR Brooke Byerley, Technical EDITOR
copy editors Judy Secrest Patty Marksteiner consultants Iridos Design - Jennifer Henderson, JODesign Iridos Editorial - Paige Hendricks, PHPR
S.H. Sohmer, DIRECTOR Patricia Harrison, ASSISTANT DIRECTOR & HEAD OF EDUCATION Cleve Lancaster, ASSISTANT DIRECTOR & DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT Judy Secrest, EXECUTIVE ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT & HEAD OF HUMAN RESOURCES Waleska Velez, RECEPTIONIST COLLECTIONS Amanda Neill, Herbarium Director Tiana Franklin, Collections Manager Sam Kieschnick, Collections Assistant Rebecca Swadek, Collections Assistant EDUCATION Pam Chamberlain Beth Ortiz Michelle Schneider Kathy Scott Amanda Stone Norton
publications Barney Lipscomb, Head Brooke Byerley Christian Franklin
LIBRARY Gary Jennings RESEARCH ANDES TO AMAZON BIODIVERSITY PROGRAM John Janovec, Co-director Amanda Neill, Co-director Fort Worth Jason Best Tiana Franklin Keri McNew
Peru Pedro Centeno Mathias Tobler
BioDIVERSITY informatics Jason Best Tiana Franklin Brooke Byerley Amanda Neill
Sometimes I wonder if our behavior could be modified significantly by minor changes in everyday phrases. For example, instead of saying “I’m going to throw this away,” what if we said “I’m going to send this to the landfill”? This would certainly be more accurate. Most of the things we “throw away” don’t vanish into some magical garbage heaven. They are taken to a landfill. Often, we just don’t think about this.
I make no claim to be a recycling hero; I’m sure I could do more. My outlook stems from my college days. I lived out in the country in a small spartan house designed as a weekend lake house. Although I had the luxury of electricity and running water, I had to use a fireplace for heat and had no waste services whatsoever. It was while living in this house that I really became aware of the fact that we don’t throw anything away. All waste has to go somewhere; there is no garbage heaven. Most of us rely on waste management services, although there are those who illegally dump waste in the country, which I saw evidence of many times.
But I always had a lot left over. I composted organic matter. Any paper that couldn’t be recycled I had to burn. After two years in college I had my own dump full of miscellaneous un-recyclable, un-compostable odds and ends: old paint cans, plastics (they weren’t as prevalent back then), broken glass, old tires (but fortunately no old washers in my dirt driveway).
FLORA OF EAST TEXAS PROJECT Robert George Barney Lipscomb
We’ve come a long way in recycling since then. Of course, BRIT recycles as much as possible. We’re even recycling at our future building site already as demonstrated by the beginnings of our new building (see the following page).
DEVELOPMENT SPECIAL EVENTS/MEMBERSHIP Tammie Crole Patty Marksteiner Amanda Morris
The next time you’re poised over the garbage can, ask yourself, “Does this have to go to the landfill?” You may just be surprised by how many times the answer is, “No!”
Distribution is free to those providing support to BRIT. Comments and suggestions are welcomed and may be sent to the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org. Conveying an unwritten message with flowers was prevalent in the 18th and 19th centuries and was known as “the language of flowers.” Iridos (the Greek word for Iris) was the messenger of the ancient Greek gods. Iridos was chosen as the title of the magazine to carry BRIT’s message. Mission: To conserve our natural heritage by deepening our knowledge of the plant world and achieving public understanding of the value plants bring to life. All photos by BRIT staff unless otherwise noted ©2010 Botanical Research Institute of Texas
I’ve been using the “landfill” phrase for a long time, and I take it one step further, asking myself “Does this have to go to the landfill?” Luckily, we now have many alternatives to sending waste to the landfill, though some are easier than others.
In those days, recycling was available only for glass bottles, metal cans, and paper, and no one picked up the recycling at your curb, even if you lived in town. So every couple of months I would take a big haul to one of the independent recycling centers in the city. Renán Valega Jason Wells
the Editor Robert J George
The massive heavy machinery roamed around the site, separating tons of debris into huge mounds of recyclable materials: non-ferrous metals, ferrous metals, masonry, concrete, and asphalt. The yellow, metal monsters dwarfed their human operators, who maneuvered the mechanical beasts with deft precision. This was the scene last November after a building was demolished to make way for our new construction next to the Botanic Garden. Rather than sending the debris to a landfill, we are recycling an astonishing 97.4 percent of the materials! Here’s how it works: Once separated, the materials go to various local recyclers and are refashioned or reused in an altered form. There is a whole host of businesses in the area that recycle just about every conceivable material, and because they’re nearby, we’ll use comparatively little energy in transporting the recyclables. Much of the asphalt and concrete goes to Big City Crushed Concrete, which has four locations in the DFW area. Here the materials are crushed and separated into graded sizes for reuse in a number of construction applications such as roads, sidewalks, foundations, and parking lots. The metals are going to Gachman
Recycling and Commercial Metals Company for processing. Practically every metal imaginable can be recycled, including iron, steel, copper, brass, zinc, and even titanium. Processing involves chopping up the material into smaller bits, separating the different metals, and bundling or compacting them in some way. The different metals are then sold to metal producers who melt and purify the scrap, making it usable for new metal products. One of the great advantages of metals is that they can be recycled almost indefinitely, and the properties of scrap metals (unlike plastics) can be fully restored. The masonry goes to a local business, Silver Creek Materials. They supply products like sand, fill dirt, crushed rock, expanded shale, organic fertilizers, green sand, soil mix, and cedar mulch. They will use the old masonry as fill material to restore areas of their sand mining operations.
Let’s take a closer look at what all of this means. First of all, very little of our demolition debris will end up in a landfill. Millions of tons of demolition debris enter landfills each year, but less than three percent of our debris will be a contributor. It also means that fewer natural resources will be extracted from the earth to produce new materials. Beyond this, particularly in the case of metals, there is a huge reduction in energy consumption – not to mention reduction in pollution – when using recycled metals as opposed to using virgin materials (see below). The efficient use of resources is a fundamental tenet of green building construction, and BRIT has gotten off to a good, early start – even before we begin actual construction!
Front cover: Designed by JODesign Back cover: BRIT Education classroom kit
Recycling steel saves up to 56% of the energy required to produce steel from raw materials.
Recycling one ton of steel conserves 2,500 lbs. of iron ore, 1,400 lbs. of coal (and the pollution produced burning it), and 120 lbs. of limestone.
Recycling copper saves up to 90% Recycling aluminum saves up to of the energy required to produce 92% of the energy required to produce it from virgin materials. it from virgin materials.
historically places of mystery, can be difficult to navigate by boat, on foot, or on paper. The politics of their preservation can be swampy, stymied by the difficulties of defining their boundaries and their worth. Wetlands are more important than many people realize, providing resources and value to the lands around them. Wetlands are carbon sinks, sequestering atmospheric CO2 in stored organic sediments. They detoxify chemical toxins and pollutants, abate storm flows and flooding, provide breeding areas for our coastal fisheries, and help to recharge water tables and aquifers, maintaining base flows in streams. Wetlands are also important recreationally for hunting, fishing, bird watching, and, of course, botanizing. About half of the wetlands in the contiguous U.S. have been drained, filled, or otherwise converted to non-wetlands.1 On
that takes wetland hydrology, wetland soils, and wetland vegetation into account. Wetland vegetation itself presents a tricky question for botanists and regulatory agencies alike. The presence or absence of wetland vegetation is determined by the National List of Plant Species that Occur in Wetlands (LIST3), first published in 1988 by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. This reference contains a listing of about 7,000 different plant species known to occur in wetlands to some extent. Each wetland plant in the LIST has been assigned one of five “wetland indicator status designations” identifying that species’ affinity for life in the saturated soils of wetland environments. Because a species’ habitat preference may vary to some degree across North America, the LIST has been divided into multiple regions. In other words, each species in each region is assigned a wetland indicator rating. Multiple data resources are used to assess a
May 24, 1977, President Jimmy Carter took a
species’ wetland indicator status rating. Plant
step toward protecting our dwindling wetland
collections, such as those housed at BRIT,
resources with Executive Order 11990, issued
provide one critical data source: herbarium
to slow the rapid conversion of our wetland
specimens. These specimens include valuable
resources through regulatory and conservation
and historic collection information, including
measures.2 These measures are administered
the location of the collection and crucial
by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (COE)
habitat information. Reference to swamps,
through the Clean Water Act and separately
bottomland, ridges, upland, and other species
on agricultural properties by the USDA’s
found in association with the one collected all
Natural Resources Conservation Service
help “paint the picture” of a species’ habitat.
Norman is a botanist and Team Leader of
through the National Food Security Act.
Through review of collections spanning more
the National Wetland Team of the USDA
The protection of wetlands, however,
than 100 years, a species’ affinity for occurring
Natural Resources Conservation Service
in wetlands can be ascertained.
headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas, with
requires knowing where wetlands begin and end. The borderlines exist in muddy ground,
All photos of Caddo Lake by Tiana Franklin
are identified by a “three-factor approach”
This LIST has not been formally revised,
and drawing these borders represents a best
taxonomically, since 1988, although some
effort to condense collected data, references,
updates occurred in 1993 and 1996.
norman melvin, ph.d.
the Central National Technology Support Center. He has spent many days in the BRIT herbarium collecting data.
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Updating 1988 National List of Plant Species that Occur in Wetlands
regulatory and compliance purposes, wetlands
Revising on Boggy Ground:
and resources and turn opinion into fact. For
http://www.fws.gov/wetlands/ StatusAndTrends/index.html 1.
http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/ codification/executive-order/11990.html 2.
http://www.usace.army.mil/CECW/ Documents/cecwo/reg/plants/list88.pdf 3.
by amanda morris
We at BRIT are thrilled to announce that we will be honoring Mrs. Ramona Bass—conservation champion, philanthropist, and co-chairman of the Fort Worth Zoological Association—with our International Award of Excellence in Conservation. The award presented at BRIT’s annual gala honors the great conservationists for our time, now in its 16th year—it is a “must attend” event. Mrs. Bass was selected to honor her tireless leadership with the Fort Worth Zoo and the Association of Zoos and Aquariums; her amazing dedication to the education of the public, particularly our youth, in matters of wildlife and conservation; her generous contributions to the conservation of native Texas wildlife through the Arthur A. Seeligson, Jr. Conservation Fund; her invaluable role in the reintroduction of the Aplomado Falcon through the Peregrine Fund; and her extensive support of other efforts for the conservation of flora and fauna.
“From naming chocolate ants last year with Dr. Wilson, to celebrating a person who is a champion for so many living things this year, BRIT is beyond delighted to have the opportunity to celebrate Ramona Bass,” said Dr. Sy Sohmer. There is no recipient more deserving to join BRIT this night honoring excellence in all things conservation, from animals to the plants on which they live. The presentation of the symbiosis of plants and animals at this gala evening will certainly be an experience to take home with you. So, save the date for this once-in-a-lifetime experience as we honor Ramona Bass. The International Award of Excellence in Conservation will take place on Thursday, May 20, 2010, at the Renaissance Worthington Hotel Ballroom in Fort Worth, Texas. Ticket prices begin at $300. Please contact Amanda Morris (817-332-4441 ext. 215 or email@example.com) for more information.
volume 21 no 1
the opinion it is only found in wetlands 1-33% of the time. Another example is Persian clover (Trifolium resupinatum). Some workers estimate that it occurs in wetlands an average of 50% of the time, while others suggest its frequency to be much lower (133%). The stakes are high: wetlands must be accurately identified so their valuable resources can be protected. The Natural Resources Conservation Service, among other teams, is working to protect our wetlands, enabling the continued protection of these beautiful, murky, and invaluable habitats so future generations may enjoy their benefits.
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Currently the LIST is in the process of being fully revised in an effort to update each species for current taxonomy and synonymy, as well as to re-evaluate the wetland indicator status rating for each species in each geographical region. Revision of the list is proving complicated, as even experts find themselves at odds. These experts disagree, for example, about wetland indicator ratings that are being applied to several wetland taxa occurring in the Gulf region and extending up the Lower Mississippi River Alluvial Valley, part of the geographical region identified in the LIST as the “Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plain” extending from East Texas to New Jersey. For example, some debate that swamp chestnut oak (Quercus michauxii) occurs in Gulf region wetlands between 67-99% of the time, while others have
BRIT Breaks Ground, Gently
Special Thanks to the Staff of the Botanic Garden and Beck Construction for their generous help in creating this landmark event for BRIT.
Sparkles with Vintage Traditions & New Flavors This past October, guests and supporters of BRIT gathered to pop a few corks in celebration of our great organization at the third annual Fête du Vin, held at the Fort Worth Club in downtown Fort Worth. The wine auction, led by Jones and Swenson, saw furious bidding – and for good reason: top items included a double magnum of 1990 Silver Oak Bonny’s Vineyard, a private reception for 75 guests at Milan Gallery with wine and hors d’oeuvres, and a week-long stay at a private vineyard in the south of France. The promise of such tantalizing items paid off. This year the auction made 94% of its value, a triumphant success for a nonprofit organization. The reception beforehand was equally successful, especially with the expert presence of Cef Zambrano, owner of Zambrano’s Wine Cellar, who paired
champagne with an exquisite selection of Cabot cheeses. And, continuing a much-loved tradition, guests were able to demonstrate their own
Equally fierce was the costume competition for “Best Dressed Vintage,” won in the end by Naomi Tune, who took home a prize bottle of Dom Perignon. BRIT is truly grateful to have generous supporters like our Fête du Vin guests. Guests are already reserving their seats to next year’s event. If you don’t want to miss out, please contact Amanda Morris (firstname.lastname@example.org) for ticket information. “This is the one event I make sure is on my calendar every year,” said Dick Steed. Make sure it’s on your calendar, too.
eno-expertise by bringing their favorite wine to share with their table, a thrill for wine aficionados eager to win bragging rights for the most stellar bottle – at least until next year’s Fête du Vin.
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There is evidence that “breaking ground” has been a part of human building ceremonies since before written history. Although we usually view ground-breaking as an occasion to celebrate new beginnings, some ancient cultures viewed groundbreaking as an act which “hurt” the earth; the ceremonies surrounding the event were, in this case, a request for forgiveness. To honor both approaches to groundbreaking, BRIT initiated construction of our new headquarters on December 14, 2009, with a unique ceremony celebrating the earth and our dependent relationship with it. The new building itself will represent a continued respect of our earth and landscape: BRIT will seek the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System™ Platinum Certification for new construction, making it the first building in the North Texas area and the fifth in Texas to achieve
Fort Worth of the 20th and 21st centuries’ most significant architects. BRIT’s new headquarters continues that tradition of creating landmark buildings. “We have many jewels in the Cultural District, and this is going to be the newest one,” observed Councilman Burdett. The ceremonies concluded with the speakers donning gloves, picking up golden trowels, and planting Fort Worth Prairie native plants in coconut fiber baskets, soon to be part of the 20,000 square feet of “living” roof at BRIT’s new headquarters.
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When did the concept of launching a new building with a groundbreaking begin? No one knows.
this level of certification. BRIT’s new home will be one of the first buildings in the region to have a “living” roof, populated here with flowering plants of the Fort Worth Prairie. Over 200 guests witnessed the symbolic initial planting of the “living” roof by city and BRIT leaders. Tim McKinney, chair of BRIT’s Board of Trustees, welcomed all guests to the site of the new headquarters at the southwest corner of Harley Avenue and University Drive, adjacent to the Fort Worth Botanic Garden. On the dais with McKinney were Fort Worth Councilman Carter Burdett; Edward P. Bass, a vice chair of BRIT’s Board of Trustees; Elaine Petrus, a Board member and head of BRIT’s longrange planning committee; and Dr. S.H. Sohmer, director and president of BRIT. In opening remarks McKinney stated, “This is a great day for BRIT and an important one for the City of Fort Worth.” He emphasized the institute’s importance in the world of botanical collections and research and remarked on the perfect new location of BRIT’s permanent home, bordering our wonderful Botanic Garden. Sohmer reiterated the important proximity of the Garden and BRIT; together, he said, they create one of the most important botanical centers in the country. Petrus remarked on the benefit to the local community whose lives are enriched by the plants in the Garden as well as by BRIT’s research. Beyond the benefits of BRIT’s research and education programs, Bass spoke to the history of architectural design in the Cultural District and the lasting influence in
by cleve lancaster
Seed photos by John Janovec from Seeds of Amazonian Plants, Princeton University Press
The Ever-Expanding Andes to Amazon Biodiversity Program by John Janovec
The forests of the Queros territory are some of the most pristine that we have seen. Although no plant collections were made during this first visit, many interesting plants were photographed. Most importantly, all of our Queros colleagues are fascinated to learn more about their flora. Here Pedro Centeno (left) teaches two Queros men, Guillermo Apaza Churo (right) and Cristobal Machacca Suclle (middle) about botanical photography.
In the Queros communities of Quico and Tambo, we spoke with president Winceslao Quispe Huillca (to the right) and his family. They served us numerous varieties of freshly harvested potatoes at his farm in Tambo (pictured here). Winceslao is the Queros leader in the discussion and planning of collaborative projects with BRIT.
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In operation for almost seven years
now, the Andes to Amazon Biodiversity Program (AABP) enters 2010 with a new sense of pride and accomplishment. Much of what we planned as far back as 2003 is finally coming to fruition! Over the last three years, we’ve disseminated our knowledge around the world through public presentations, scientific articles, books, an innovative website (www.andesamazon. org), and the Atrium Biodiversity Information System (atrium.andesamazon.org), designed and programmed at BRIT. We’ve provided support and justification for new and existing conservation areas in the Andes-Amazon region of southeastern Peru. Currently we’re leading wilderness exploration activities in the region, focusing on the development of new conservation areas to protect pristine ecosystems. The discoveries and overall progress of this unique, productive research program would not be possible without the support, patience, and “boots on the ground” philosophy of BRIT’s board,
staff, and friends. The BRIT-AABP team thanks you for this support and provides the following highlights of recent activities.
AABP Plays Principle Role in Proposed Conservation Area in Peru
For over a year, BRIT-AABP has been collaborating with the Regional Government of Cusco, Peru, in planning and establishing up to 18 regional conservation areas, including an area in the wilderness region of Marcapata-Camanti where the BRIT-AABP team has been based since 2007. The role of BRIT-AABP has been to lead expeditions involving plant collection and quantitative vegetation inventory. Surveys of local fauna have been carried out through ongoing collaboration involving Dr. Mathias Tobler of BRIT and Dr. Russ Van Horn of the San Diego Zoo. Geologists and anthropologists from the Cusco government have participated in expeditions, along with the Farro family, Larry Zlatar, and Bronie Kalinowsky of Camanti.
After extensive field research, a conservation proposal was submitted in December 2009 to the Peruvian national government with both BRIT and the international branch BRIT-Peru acknowledged as the principal scientific contributors. This conservation proposal is an excellent example of the real-world application of BRIT’s “boots on the ground” philosophy toward important conservation action in biological hotspots of the Andes-Amazon region.
raise root crops, alpacas, and llamas in the Andean highlands and corn in the Amazonian lowlands. They also manage large populations of the endangered vicuña, a high-Andean species related to the alpaca and llama. Last December, Pedro Centeno, a principal member of the BRIT field team, and I accepted an invitation to visit the Queros community of Quico, one of the highland communities of the Queros Nation. During our four-day visit, we walked from
alpine vegetation at the lower limits of Andean glaciers down through orchid, fern, and mossladen cloud forests and into the Amazonian lowlands. We slept and ate in simple, traditional camps – tarps tied up with rope-strong stems of local vines and a bedding of riverside grasses: no tents necessary. We fed ourselves by netting fish from the local streams and rivers. During our field time together, we engaged in serious discussions that led to the initiation of a collaborative project between communities of the Queros Nation and BRIT. The specific objectives of the project include botanical inventory, ethnobotanical documentation, vegetation ecology, training in biodiversity monitoring and inventory, and the application of all of the above activities to long-term conservation of the many ecosystems of the Queros Territory. Collaboration involving Dr. Russ Van Horn of the San Diego Zoo and Dr. Mathias Tobler of BRIT is aimed at fauna inventory and monitoring, which is already in progress. The ethnobotanical studies represent a new area of research by the BRIT-AABP team, as well as a logical extension to ongoing botanical studies in Peru. The accompanying images provide a glimpse into this developing collaboration with individuals and communities of the Queros Nation. Future articles will include updates about this exciting opportunity.
Read more about adventures and products of the AABP at the following links: A short article in Time Magazine (online) entitled, “How a Little Town in Peru is Becoming a Hotspot.” www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1942387,00.html Insight from a month-long expedition into the Peruvian Andes Mountains: a brief article with images written by Eric Christenson. http://www.brit.org/research/floras/andes-to-amazon-biodiversity-program/a-month-of-orchids/ Soon to be published! Seeds of Amazonian Plants is the first field guide to treat the extraordinary diversity of seeds and diaspores of plants commonly encountered in the Amazon and other lowland moist forests of the American tropics. The guide contains 750 color photos of seeds from 544 genera. Preprint orders now being accepted. See below. Fernando Cornejo and John Janovec. 2010. Seeds of Amazonian Plants. Princeton University Press: http://press.princeton.edu/titles/9139.html
Collaboration Initiated with the Queros Nation
One of the most exciting new project opportunities being considered and discussed by the BRIT-AABP team involves a long-term collaboration with the Queros Nation. The Queros live in various communities that extend from alpine vegetation in the high Andes Mountains down through Andean montane forests and into the Amazonian lowlands. The Queros have a long history dedicated to agriculture and
Here is the entrance to the Queros community of Quico between Quincemil and Cusco. Centeno and I traveled six hours from our base in Quincemil up into the Andes Mountains.
The Queros are wise stewards of their land and a curiously peaceful people who possess a unique harmony with the natural world. They grow potatoes and other root crops in their highlands, and corn and yucca in their Amazonian lowlands. They raise an abundance of livestock, such as alpaca and llamas, which they use for meat and whose fibers they use to make fabric.
The many glaciers above the Queros Territory have provided a constant source of fresh water for at least four centuries. All evidence indicates the glaciers have been melting at an increasing rate over the last five to ten years. We discussed the wise management of vegetation as an important step toward conservation of water resources.
Journal of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas (J. Bot. Res. Inst.Texas)
weighed in at 540 pages and contained 52 papers by 85 authors. Fifty-three new names and combinations were described, including four new species from the US, three new species from Mexico/Central America, and 27 new species from South America. The lead article in the journal was coauthored by long-time BRIT research associate Bob Kral. It documents the discovery of a new species in a quirky genus of flowering plants known as Xyris (see illustration). Here follows a paragraph from the introduction.
PRESSing Matters: Press Success at Home and On the Road
One of the biggest surprises of the conference was the popularity of an older title, Emanuel D. Rudolph’s Studies in the History of North American Botany. We sold more copies of this book than any other book, and sold more copies in three days than we have in several years. In September, BRIT Press was welcomed back as an exhibitor at the annual Systematics Symposium in St. Louis, Missouri. This was another successful venture for us, not only for our sales but also for expanding our audience and gaining greater name recognition, both for the Press and the Institution as a whole. And we were able to eke out enough free time to get a behind-the-scenes tour of the Missouri Botanical Garden Herbarium, as well as visit the eclectic and engaging City Museum of St. Louis.
Upon our return it was back to the grindstone, and at the end of November, we published another fantastic issue of the Journal of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas (Volume 3, Number 2). The issue
Lastly, we are still hard at work on several new books, which we hope to publish very soon. These include a book on houseplants, a plant checklist for Puerto Rico, a guide to the ferns of Texas, a historical account of Sonoran Desert botany, and a book on the grasses of Zacatecas, Mexico. For the latest updates on Press activities, visit our website at www.brit.org/brit-press, or let us know if you would like to stop by the library to browse our collection. We’re looking forward to the next few busy and successful months!
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Xyris spathifolia drawing by Robert Kral
Guidelines for journal contributors to the Journal of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas are available at www.britpress.org — click on Submitting a Paper: Guidelines for Authors. NAME: _____________________________________________ ADDRESS: _____________________________________________ _____________________________________________ _____________________________________________ Payment: n Check n Visa n MasterCard n AmEx n Discover $_____________ total in U.S. dollars Credit card number: ____________________________________ Expiration date: _____/_____/_____ Print name as listed on credit card: _________________________________________________________ Signature:_______________________________________________ Tel. No.__________________________________________________
Barney Lipscomb and Brooke Byerley at the 56th Annual Systematics Symposium in St. Louis
For information or subscription payment, contact: BRIT Press 500 East 4th Street, Fort Worth, Texas 76102 email@example.com Web site: www.britpress.org
volume 21 no 1
The BRIT Press has been busy since the last issue of Iridos, traveling the country for conferences as well as working on several exciting new publications. In July, we attended “Botany & Mycology 2009” amidst the jaw-dropping grandeur of Snowbird Ski Resort in Utah (see photo above). This was BRIT Press’s first showing at the conference, and in addition to seeing some familiar faces, we also successfully made many new friends (and new sales!). Most passers-by were captivated by the heft of our two floras (Illustrated Flora of North Central Texas and Illustrated Flora of East Texas, Vol. 1) and wished aloud that they had a similar reference work for their state/county/ country/home region. We must admit that we take delight in this envy of our works! (Wouldn’t you?)
Subscription Rates (check one):
volume 21 no 1
by brooke byerley
Despite the pervasive notion that cataloging of the vascular plant flora of North America is complete, new species continue to be discovered. Frequently, these discoveries occur in spatial or temporal clusters, revealing a botanical “hot spot,” as in the case of the Ketona Glades of Bibb County, Alabama, located at the extreme southern edge of the Ridge and Valley Ecoregion. During the last 10–12 years, nine vascular plant taxa new to science (including the one described herein) have been identified from this area, as well as seven state records including some regional disjuncts, and more than 60 taxa of conservation concern. With a total flora of over 420 species occurring within an area of ca. 125 ha (about 300 acres), it is one of the most botanically diverse areas in the eastern United States.
is an international journal of systematic botany and has been a source of current research in classical and modern systematic botany for readers throughout the world for nearly 50 years. The journal publishes primary research papers in fields such as anatomy, biogeography, chemo-taxonomy, ecology, evolution, floristics, genetics, paleobotany, palynology, and phylogenetic systematics. Coverage is not restricted to any geographical area, and papers are contributed from authors around the world. It is published twice a year, with papers and abstracts in two languages. All papers are peer-reviewed and are frequently illustrated with maps and line drawings. Each issue includes short communications on floristic discoveries, book reviews, and notices of new publications.
BRIT BRiefs • BRIT BRiefs • BRIT BRiefs • BRIT BRiefs
Val Wilkie Teaching Enrichment Collection Honors Lifetime of Educational Leadership
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Val Wilkie has been a cheerleader and advocate for BRIT’s education program since its inception in 1992, encouraging the fledgling program to reach out into the community and build partnerships. He recognized the impact and value of education for people of all ages. His advice has made the education program the success it is today. Now, BRIT is proud to honor his lifelong dedication to strengthening the field of education by renaming our teacher resource collection the Val Wilkie Teaching Enrichment Collection. An early career in education showed Mr. Wilkie the tremendous importance of supporting teachers and students alike. From a position as teacher, coach, and headmaster in Massachusetts, Mr. Wilkie arrived in Fort Worth to serve as executive vice president of the Sid W. Richardson Foundation (www.sidrichardson.org/Board.html). His education experience continues to inform his lifelong commitment to
2010 Public Lectures Offer New Topics, Visiting Scientists &
Late Afternoon Talks
philanthropy and support of the education community. He has always maintained that education is our greatest need and that teaching deserves to be one of our most highly respected professions. His
philanthropic efforts to support community service organizations and education have changed our community, and Val himself epitomizes educational leadership, setting
BRIT Around the Clock:
Slab Dance Y our Heart Out by pat harrison the bar for future generations of educators. The Val Wilkie Teaching Enrichment Collection features the BRIT curriculum, teacher guides, and classroom activity kits, as well as professional literature and inspirational books for teachers. Our BRIT staff have honored the occasion of the renaming by donating Parker Palmer’s Courage to Teach and the book Wangari’s Trees of Peace by Jeannette Winter to the collection. Your donations in Mr. Wilkie’s honor for this collection are also welcome; for further information, please call Kathy Scott at 817-332-4441 ext. 237. The Val Wilkie Collection will be displayed in a special location in the Teacher Resource Room at BRIT’s new home. We encourage everyone to visit our Teacher Resource Room and browse through this amazing collection.
Come spend an afternoon with our botanical staff
topics and interests. The lectures, usually scheduled
and friends! Don’t miss the opportunity to talk
for the late afternoon, are held in the 2nd floor
with visiting scientists and learn more about local
conference room at 500 E. 4th Street. As always,
and national conservation issues from a variety of
we offer free off-street parking. Check the events
speakers. BRIT has planned a number of informal
calendar for specific details (www.brit.org/events-
public lectures for 2010 focusing on wide-ranging
calendar/). We look forward to seeing you!
Shake your groove thing at BRIT’s Slab Dance held at our new site on Saturday, April 24th. This smashing event encompasses phenomenal music, great drinks, and delicious food alongside hard hat tours of the new “in-the-process-of-being-built” building! Shuffle those feet to the musical stylings of Mingo Fishtrap. With a sound described as “gutbucket soul, N’awlins grit-down funk, and horn-fueled Mowtown Funk,” you certainly
will not be sitting still. The Slab Dance will feature scrumptious food stations from some of the most popular restaurants in Cowtown as well as an open bar to help motivate those boogie shoes! Throughout the beginning of the evening, guests are invited on hard hat tours of the new space. Don’t pass up the opportunity to view our LEED certified building which will be a beautiful gem in the cultural district. Tickets to this once in a lifetime party are on sale now. If you would like to purchase tickets, or would like more information, please contact Amanda Morris, 817-332-4441 ext. 215 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Butterflies Did you know that butterflies and other pollinators are indirectly responsible for over three-quarters of our food crops? Or that butterflies depend on host plants to raise their young? Visitors to this spring’s “Butterflies in the Garden” discovered that life as we know it would be very different without the services these beautiful creatures provide. Throughout the month of March, learners of all ages explored the largest exhibit of tropical butterflies in North Texas with about 12,000 exotic and native butterflies representing about 100 species from around the world. Curious children from local schools were excited to view the butterfly life cycle and meet lepidopterists, scientists who specialize in butterfly behavior, before experiencing the “winged wonders” in the conservatory. For the fourth time since the event was established in 2002, BRIT was pleased to host the popular butterfly exhibit with the Fort Worth Botanic Garden, the Fort worth Botanical Society, and the Fort Worth
Garden Club. Revenue from the month-long event supports both current and future educational outreach at the Garden and BRIT.
We extend a special “ Thank Y ou” to our sponsors for their support of Butterflies in the Garden 2010 Animal Services Inc. Campbell Paper Company Fifth Avenue Greenhouses Fowlkes-Norman and Associates KSCS Radio Station BIG 96.3 Panache Redenta’s Garden Silver Creek Materials Southwest Wholesale Nursery Star-Telegram Taylor’s Rental Equipment Company The Big Picture
Watch Our Building Grow! Construction of our new building is underway, and we want to make sure you witness the exciting progress with us. In January we set up a time-lapse camera that has been dutifully snapping away, helping us document the hourly progress on the construction of our new home. After years of planning, it’s incredibly satisfying to see the building take shape. You too can see the progress on our web site: www.brit.org/new-home/progress/. To capture the images of the building as it grows, we chose the digital, waterproof Brinno GardenWatchCam, which automatically takes a picture every hour and stores pictures on a standard memory stick. Every few days we retrieve the images from the camera and compile them into a movie, allowing you to see our new building “grow” before your very eyes! The camera is set up on the north edge of the construction site facing south and is aimed at the two large live oaks where our building is emerging. In addition to these hourly images, we’ve been taking regular trips to the site to take pictures the old-fashioned way. We’ve compiled these images (and some aerial photos!) for your perusal as well. Check out the photos at the website, and we’ll see you on-site soon!
Check us out! www.brit.org/new-home/progress/
Your cup of tea? Treatment for flu in your backyard?
photo by Arri Belli licensed under
Just watch where you step!
from November to March in the United
by sam kieschnick In the summer of 2005, Sam Kieschnick volunteered in the BRIT herbarium with the goal of mastering family names for his plant taxonomy course at Tarleton State University. This January, five years and a master’s degree later, Sam joined our staff as a Collections Assistant in the herbarium, bringing with him a passion for all aspects of biology, from taxonomy to conservation to working in the field.
States, and it shows: every cough or sneeze brings looks of suspicion, and bottles of hand sanitizer appear at every turn. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 5% to 20% of U.S. residents have seasonal flu each year, exhibiting mild
Confederate doctors utilized the plant’s gum as an antiseptic. The sap has also been used for chewing gum, to calm the nerves, treat dysentery, and interestingly enough, to reduce fever, suggesting the application of shikimic acid in fighting off the flu. This fragrant beauty may hold many more chemical secrets, but you should avoid trying to discover them by walking barefooted after the woody fruit-fall if you don’t want the nickname “ankle biters” to join your vocabulary! Researchers are currently working on isolating shikimic acid more efficiently from both Chinese star anise and sweetgum plants. As evidenced by the recent global demand for TAMIFLU®, we continue to rely on plants for our most advanced medical treatments, a testament to the power and variety of their compounds and the need for their conservation and appreciation. TAMIFLU® is a registered trademark of Roche Laboratories, Inc.
volume 21 no 1
F lu season is in full swing
throughout southern North America, Mexico, and Central America. The descriptive genus name Liquidambar refers to the fragrant sap (“liquid amber”) expelled from the injured bark of the tree. The sweetgum’s star-shaped leaves, known for their dramatic fall color change from green to vibrant orange, yellow, and red, are also fragrant when bruised or crushed. Perhaps the most unique identifying characteristic of this plant, however, is its spiky, ball-shaped fruit—woody clusters made of twobeaked capsules with a mace-like appearance. Sweetgum fruits have deservedly acquired many humorous nicknames; you’ll hear them referred to as gumballs, cuckoo-birs, space bugs, and ankle biters. As someone who mows a yard with a sweetgum overhead, I know that the mass of fruit that the tree produces can be almost as annoying as it is interesting! Like the Chinese star anise, the sweetgum has a long history of medicinal use far predating its treatment of seasonal flu. According to the USDA, the Aztec people in Central America boiled the plant, combining the residue formed on the top with the roots of other plants to cover cuts or bruises.
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Illicium verum Chinese star anise
to severe symptoms like fever, sore throat, headache, cough, and joint and muscle aches. This year flu season arrived early and with major fanfare as the now-infamous H1N1 influenza strain, or swine flu, swept around the world. The increased attention to flu also brought new awareness of the drugs used to treat it. One of the most commonly prescribed treatments for flu symptoms is the drug TAMIFLU®, which slows the rate of cellular viral infection. TAMIFLU® (from the generic chemical oseltamivir phosphate) derives from a natural biochemical called shikimic acid, found in several different plants around the globe. Shikimic acid is isolated in the highest concentrations from Chinese star anise (Illicium verum). Found in southwest China and Vietnam, Chinese star anise is a relatively small evergreen tree whose name comes from its characteristically star-shaped fruit pods, each containing six to eight seeds. For centuries, these seeds have been harvested, ground, and used as an aromatic culinary spice, adding flavor to food and reputed to aid sore joints and weak digestion when added to teas. In our hemisphere, shikimic acid is found, albeit in lower concentration, in one of the most colorful and recognizable trees in North America: the sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua), a member of the witch-hazel family (Hamamelidaceae). Sweetgums range in height from 65 to 130 feet and are commonly found
HENRI EUGENE LIOGIER de SEREYS ALLUT
is Fertile Ground for a Growing Collection
by Gary L.
S. H. Sohmer, Botanical Research Institute of Texas
volume 21 no 1
n November 9, 2009, BRIT lost a famous Research Associate, and I lost a personal friend. Henri Eugene Liogier De Sereys Allut and I had been friends since 1974. We first met when I traveled to Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic (DR) to collect plants as part of my early research. Alain, as he preferred to be called, was the director of the Botanical Garden in Santo Domingo. He was French by birth, tall, lean, and dark haired with a courteous manner—in short, a proper gentleman. Alain had been sent to Cuba as a Christian Brother. There he taught botany and studied the local flora, writing books on the plants of that island and, I assume, beginning his life-long love affair with the plants of the Caribbean. During my visit, I did not want to impose on Alain and assumed he would just point out some places for me to collect and allow me to get there on my own. But he insisted that I take his hospitality and allow him to help. He was most generous, going out into the field with me almost every day for nearly two weeks. In the evenings we were either his guests at various restaurants or at his house where his wife, Perpha, plied us with numerous meals. Alain and Perpha were gracious and hospitable to a fault. The basis was set for a friendship that would last over 25 years, with a gap of some 20 years that I will explain shortly. I returned to the DR about four years after that first visit, this time as a National Science Foundation Program Officer. At that time, although Alain was still nominally director of
the garden, the person who actually sat in his former office and ruled the organization was an army officer who wore as an adornment a pearl-handled .38 pistol at his belt. I could see that things were less than ideal for Alain. Regrettably we lost touch for many years, reconnecting only in 1995. The reunion began when I had been at my new position at BRIT for about two years. One day an out-going check to pay for volume five of the Flora of Puerto Rico crossed my desk. The check was made out to a Dr. Alain Liogier whose address was at the University of Puerto Rico. I doubted there could be two such people, but I could not understand the peregrination to Puerto Rico. So, I attached a little yellow sticky note to that check on which I asked, “Are you the Alain Liogier I knew in the Dominican Republic?” Two weeks later (this was before e-mail) a letter came back in which Alain very excitedly said that, yes, it was he, and he was actually retiring to Fort Worth since his daughter, Teresa, lived there. He was so glad to know that there was a botanical institute in Fort Worth! And so he became a BRIT Research Associate and frequently used our collections, principally our library, for many years. He always seemed to be happiest among the books that he used as references for his continuing efforts to understand the flora of the Caribbean and the mysteries and beauty of the evolution that had led such things to exist on this planet. For many years my wife, Sara, and I have enjoyed the hospitality of Perpha’s kitchen. I must once again comment on the fact that places like BRIT are both shelters and
nurturing grounds for people like Alain, those who spend their lives trying to add to the important knowledge base of global plant diversity. Alain succeeded well in that, with five volumes of the Flora de Cuba (the first two co-authored with Brother Leon), eight volumes and one supplement of La Flora de la Española, five volumes of the Descriptive Flora of Puerto Rico and Adjacent Islands, a Botanical Dictionary of Common Names of Plants of Hispaniola, Medicinal Plants of Puerto Rico and the Caribbean, and principal author of Flora of Puerto Rico and Adjacent Islands: A Systematic Synopsis. Would that this circle could have remained unbroken…but nothing lasts forever. I know that all of us who came in contact with this fine man will always remember him. Alain fought a valiant fight against cancer. He lost but always displayed a calm acceptance. The last time I saw him, he was at his home, sitting on the couch in his living room tethered to an oxygen tank and was his usual friendly, warm, and courteous self. I will always miss this wonderful man and will always honor his memory.
We’ve added many new books to our BRIT library over the last few months. These books come to us in a number of different ways, and BRIT is fortunate to receive some books as personal gifts. Old and new, these are books acquired during a visit to someplace exotic, used in an individual’s studies or research, or prized for their beauty, usefulness, or rarity. We also receive newly published books from publishers as review copies. These books are sent to us for free, and we publish a review of the book, written by staff members and volunteers, in the Journal of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas—the review ‘paying’ for the book, so to speak. Reviewing books is a great way to stay involved both with BRIT and the world of botanical publishing. If you’re interested in becoming a volunteer reviewer, contact Dr. B. Byerley (email@example.com) for details. Finally, we purchase books and monographs for the BRIT library with the intention of supporting our research botanists. With the overall quality of the library in mind, we attempt to keep the collection balanced, including all aspects of botanical endeavor—floras, herbal and medicinal materials, biographical studies, and other topics—in our search for the best acquisitions. We’ve included the titles of some of our most recent additions to the collection here. Please let us know if you’d like to peruse our library materials in more detail.
New Monographs: Junipers of the World Venus’s Flytrap
New Floras: 620 Wild Plants of North America Fall Colors and Woodland Harvests Handbook of Mangroves in the Philippines Sedums of Europe
New Monographic Series Additions: Ecology of Indonesia, vol. 8, pt. 2 Families and Genera of Vascular Plants, vols. VIII and IX Flora Neomexicana II Genera Orchidacearum, vol. 5, pt. 2, Epidendroideae Orchid Biology: Reviews and Perspectives, vol. VIII World Checklist of Myrtaceae
New Herbal and Medicinal Additions: Chinese Herbal Medicine Ethnobotany of the Shuar of Eastern Ecuador Medicinal Plants of the Southern Appalachians Natural Medicines and Healing Therapies Scientific Basis for Ayurvedic Therapies
New Biographical Studies: The Brother Gardeners Draughtsmen, Botanists and Nature This Other Eden Mark Catesby’s New World Vision
New Other Additions: Ethnobotany and Conservation of Biocultural Diversity Jardin de la Malmaison: Empress Josephine’s Garden Resource Management in Amazonia A Splintered History of Wood
by tiana franklin
To the New BRIT Herbarium
A natural history of a single species (Helenium microcephalum, Sunflower family) in Texas illustrated by BRIT specimens collected over a one hundred and twenty year span 2000 2025
Plants play a crucial role in our existence on this planet.
Wisely managing our diverse natural heritage requires information about plant identities and characteristics and recognizing the role they each play in the ecosystem. With a collection of over one million dried plant specimens representing most of the Earth’s plant families collected over the last 200+ years, the Botanical Research Institute of Texas has the largest independent herbarium in the Southwest and preserves one of the world’s best collections of Texas plants. Contributing to our Institute’s growth is the
“Additional space will provide greater opportunities for educational collaborations, assuring that we can share the collection in even better ways with school groups, teachers, and the general public.”
“compactorized” using mobile carriage units on rails embedded in the floor, the increase in functional space will be greatly amplified. The layout provides numerous solutions. It will not only allow us to carry out daily herbarium tasks much more efficiently, but will facilitate
acquisition of various collections and myriad contributions by national and international
plant specimens that simply do not fit into the
enforcement of our strict protocols of
collectors. However, our current BRIT facility
specimen processing. The new building will also enable strict maintenance of a climate-controlled
current holdings, the BRIT herbarium is
Garden provides room for our collections to
environment where both humidity and
bursting at its seams and has nowhere to grow.
grow for another 50 years or more. It also
temperature can be kept at the appropriate
The collections barely fit existing cabinets.
provides us with an ability to increase access
low and constant settings. Such a situation
to the valuable collections that are currently
best preserves our collections and inhibits
space thanks to a clever shelving compactor
languishing in boxes and unavailable for study.
threatening pest activity, something our
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building adjacent to the Fort Worth Botanic
collections. But a quick glance above the
feet, the new herbarium will essentially
With only about 24,000 shelves to store its
cabinets reveals hundreds of boxes with more
double the space we currently occupy.
system that holds more than half of our
With a footprint of about 25,000 square
current building simply cannot provide. BRIT prides itself in having a very high level of public outreach and accessibility, a rarity for
volume 21 no 1
A solution is on the horizon. Our new
“The new building will also enable strict maintenance of a climatecontrolled environment where both humidity and temperature can be kept at the appropriate low and constant settings.”
lacks space and constrains most activities.
Luckily, we can house more cabinets in less
Since all cabinets will be fully
New Education Programs Go The Distance
scientific standard only achievable through the input of the collective minds of the broader botanical community. BRIT has had a steady stream of researchers who have entered its doors and countless numbers of specimens that have been sent out on loan. But, to this point we’ve been unable to provide a large enough workspace to easily facilitate multiple large taxonomic and systematic studies. In the new building, we’ll have more workspaces for both scientific professionals and students. The workstations will include
“A great collection assumes a scientific standard only achievable through the input of the collective minds of the broader botanical community.”
and for volunteers to carry out their various tasks. Furthermore, additional space will provide greater opportunities for educational collaborations, assuring that we can share the collection in even better ways with school groups, teachers, and the general public. We look forward to new activities, too, such as
will give virtual access to our collections from across the globe. A good herbarium collection is one that fulfills a need (be it via breadth or depth of a collection), is maintained in appropriate conditions, and is readily accessible by researchers. A great collection assumes a
to the technological tools of the trade (e.g. computers, microscopes, imaging equipment). With the new BRIT facility in action, we can expect to attract more researchers from around the world. We will be able to exhibit our collections amply, assuring their positioning at the forefront of scientific investigation. Through the new BRIT facility, we will further increase the value of all BRIT endeavors. We look forward to a great expansion of space to do more, growth to improve our contributions, and the start of many new possibilities!
“He was so giggly and wiggly that he had a new dance called… the giggly wiggles!” from Wiggly Giggly Pumpkin by Olivia Harrison, age 7
In December, BRIT joined other prestigious educational providers including the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, the Amon Carter Museum, and the Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame in a “Winter Wonderland” event arranged by Connect2Texas, the group that supports and manages our videoconferences. This broadcast combined social studies with science to teach both the cultural and plant beginnings of winter holidays including Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa. Once again, we engaged our audiences with a creative delivery of botanical content while offering, as always, a hands-on interactive component. BRIT delivered this broadcast 19 times to 14 campuses. The success of the new titles along with those in our permanent library of distant learning programs (such as Green Monsters and King Quigley) gives us a sense of pride and accomplishment. We want to build on this foundation and continue to fulfill our responsibility to our constituents—your children or grandchildren—by pushing our boundaries, expanding our range of topics, and developing more creative, innovative, and effective learning experiences.
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a herbarium yet a quality that benefits all our users as well as the herbarium itself. With a small staff managing the collection, the efforts of herbarium volunteers have been crucial to its current well-kept state. In the new facility, we will have more adequate spaces for the preservation of plants
specimens, assuring easy access to them and
plant life cycles from the poem “The Wiggly Giggly Pumpkin,” written by budding young author Olivia Harrison, age seven. Our programs facilitate real learning experiences through highly creative and engaging activities. Two of this fall’s programs, for example, encouraged students to focus on the critical writing skills of scientific journaling, make critical observations, and practice drawing techniques to better represent their observations.
volume 21 no 1
the more rigorous digitization projects that
long counter-tops on which to spread
Distance learning is an interactive way to bring BRIT’s resources to kids, whether in area schools or across the country, and it is proving wildly popular. Distance learning uses interactive video broadcasting so children can see and communicate with BRIT staff while engaging in creative activities that challenge them to think like scientists. From virtual tours of the herbarium to interactions with real scientists, our distance learning programs give kids a new look at nature around the world and in their own backyard. This past fall, BRIT’s distance learning program took off! The demand for our programs was the highest in their history, exceeding our expectations and demonstrating the importance and accessibility of these programs to a wide range of school audiences. A total of eight program titles were delivered during the fall semester of 2009 to audiences across Texas, Louisiana, and Ohio, reaching 3,000 students and educators. The programs included new offerings and old favorites, all geared toward the scope and sequence of Texas schools. The Fort Worth Star-Telegram featured one of our programs as an example of the “virtual visit” now available from many prominent institutions, allowing organizations like BRIT to deliver quality learning experiences beyond the walls of our buildings, a valuable opportunity both for us and for the schoolchildren we reach. And children, in turn, can help us with our educational efforts. We developed one program about
by pam chamberlain
Donations DIRECTOR’S CIRCLE
Advanced Skin Fitness Alexander Valley Vineyards Ms. Sally B. Allsup Mr. Barry K. Bailey Dr. Boyce B. Balfour and Dr. Claire Sanders Barking Rocks Winery Ms. Grace Bascope Bee Free Personal Assistance & Concierge Services Mr. and Mrs. Delamar T. Bell Mr. Frederick R. Bjorck Mrs. Evelyn H. Breaux Brennan Vineyards Brianna’s Fine Salad Dressing Mr. Horace R. Burke Mrs. Karen and Mr. Mike Burkett PATRON LEVEL Casa Flora, Inc. Mr. and Mrs. William V. Boecker Mr. and Mrs. James Chamberlain Mr. and Mrs. Henry Borbolla Chicotsky’s Liquor Store Dr. and Mrs. Robert S. Capper Mr. John Clayton Mr. and Mrs. Lee F. Christie SUSTAINING LEVEL Mr. and Mrs. Fred T. Closuit Mr. and Mrs. Louis Church Anonymous Mrs. Marie Louise Cole City Kitchen Bar 9 Ms. Martha Cole Dr. and Mrs. Ernest F. Couch Mr. and Mrs. Harry E. Bartel Community Foundation of North Texas Mr. and Mrs. Walter G. Dahlberg Bass Energy Company/Mr. and Mrs Mr. Douglas Cook DFW Painting Tom Bass Costa Rica Coffee Co. Mrs. Deena Heide-Diesslin and Mr. David Mr. and Mrs. Franklin E. Covington Mr. and Mrs. Michael Bennett Diesslin Mr. and Mrs. Greg Bird Dr. and Mrs. Gordon M. Cragg Dr. and Mrs. Nowell Donovan Burgundy Pasture Beef Mr. and Mrs. Calvin Crole El Monte Sagrado Mr. William R. Burk Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial Mr. and Mrs. Robert C. Findlay Ms. Sally Channon Cuisinart Mr. Dan Fitzgerald Cognac Ferrand Dr. and Mrs. Ivan Danhof Garrett Creek Ranch Conference Center Mr. and Mrs. Brad Davis Mr. Carroll W. Collins* Dr. and Mrs. Arturo Gomez-Pompa Como Zoo and Conservatory Society Mr. and Mrs. Donald del Cid Mr. C. Brodie Hyde II Mr. and Mrs. Dwight H. Cumming Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group Mr. and Mrs. John Kovach David S. Irvin Portrait Photographer Mrs. Gretchen Denny and Mr. George La Buena Vida Vineyards - Grapevine Mr. Jeff R. Davis Bristol Lambert Landscape Company Mr. Rick Ekleberry Mr. Tom Dera Mr. and Mrs. William M. Lawrence Mr. and Mrs. James Finley Derby Wine Estates Ms. Martha V. Leonard Fisher Vineyards Mr. Edward D. Doherty Mr. Dan E. Lowrance Mr. and Mrs. Mark Fleming Mr. and Mrs. William D. Draper Mr. and Mrs. John W. Mason Mr. and Mrs. Arnold G. Gachman Mrs. Sally M. Ehrhart Dr. and Mrs. James D. McChesney Mr. and Mrs. Richard Haskell Mr. and Mrs. Leland P. Ekstrom Mr. Richard Henderson and Mrs. Victoria Mr. and Mrs. Timothy W. McKinney FC DALLAS Major League Soccer Team Mr. and Mrs. Victor Medina Prescott Dr. Maureen A. Finnegan Herb ‘n Health Natural Foods Market/Ms. Mr. and Mrs. Mike Moore Ms. Sara Fix Mrs. Judy G. Needham Karen Foley Mr. and Mrs. Jenkins Garrett Dr. Ranzell Nickelson, Ph.D. and Mrs. Lambert’s Steak, Seafood, & Whiskey Mr. and Mrs. Robert L. Ginsburg Karen Ostrander Mr. and Mrs. W. Cleve Lancaster Grace Decor Consultants Dr. and Mrs. Jerry B. Payne Mr. and Mrs. William A. Landreth, Jr. Grace’s Framing Mr. and Mrs. Robert A. Pedersen Mr. Willis F. Lee Grand Cru Wines and Gifts Mr. and Mrs. Michael Rasher Ms. Barbara H. Marshall Dr. and Mrs. Dana Griffin III Mr. and Mrs. Joel T. Sawyer Mrs. Ruth A. May Mr. and Mrs. Robert C. Haltom Mr. and Mrs. Robert L. Self Milan Gallery Dr. and Mrs. O. Winston Hampton Sheraton Fort Worth Hotel and Spa Mr. and Mrs. Jarrell R. Milburn Mr. and Mrs. Tom Harrison Ms. Cynthia Tune Mr. and Mrs. Robert J. Mitchell Mr. and Mrs. John R. Hart Mr. and Mrs. William R. Watt, Jr. Mr. and Mrs. Tom O. Moncrief Dr. and Mrs. Phil Hartman Mr. and Mrs. Alan Werner Moore Tree Care Mr. and Mrs. James D. Hasenzahl Mr. Eduar Lamprea and Mrs. Roxanne Mr. and Mrs. Viktor Heinz Myers Ms. Ruth A. Hendrick
Dr. and Mrs. William J. Hess Mr. and Mrs. Gary L. Jennings Ms. Marilyn Jolly Mr. and Mrs. Tom Jones K. Flories Antiques Mr. and Mrs. Byron L. Keil, Sr. Mr. and Mrs. Henry C. Kelly Mr. George W. Kennemer Dr. and Mrs. Allen S. Kent Dr. and Mrs. Thomas M. Kleuser Mr. and Mrs. Robert E. Kolba Mr. and Mrs. Henry Kologe Dr. Demitris Kouris Dr. and Mrs. Tetsuo Koyama Mr. and Mrs. Allan R. LaQuey Ms. Mary E. Lattimore Mr. James M. Layden Mrs. Rachel J. Ledbetter Ledson Winery & Vineyard Mr. and Mrs. David Levine Dr. and Mrs. David P. Lewis Mr. Barney L. Lipscomb Llano Estacado Winery Longview Country Club, Longview Course Dr. Thomas E. Lovejoy III Mr. John Lunsford Mr. and Mrs. Henry C. Lynn Mr. and Mrs. Stephen J. Marksteiner Mr. and Mrs. William A. Massad Mr. and Mrs. Clyde McKinney Ms. Keri McNew Mr. Ronald Melville Mr. and Mrs. Russ Miller Ms. Marty Mitchener Ms. Elizabeth R. Mize Dr. and Mrs. B. O’Dell Molpus, Jr. Mr. and Mrs. William B. Moser, Jr. Mr. and Mrs. Stephen Mosher Mrs. George Anne Muckleroy Mumm Napa Dr. and Mrs. William H. Neill Nike Dr. and Mrs. Richard P. Norgaard Ms. Betty Norvell Mr. and Mrs. Joseph A. O’Brien Capt. Robert J. O’Kennon Mrs. Marissa Oppel-Sutter Ms. Anna Palmer Mrs. Bettye Palmer Ms. Elizabeth Patterson Mr. and Mrs. Henry B. Paup Mr. and Mrs. Hershel R. Payne Mr. and Mrs. George W. Pepper Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Pinkus Ms. Mary H. Pritchett Dr. and Mrs. Richard K. Rabeler Dr. Gwynn W. Ramsey Mr. Ray Raney Renfro Foods, Inc. Mr. and Mrs. Roger B. Rice Ms. Becky Richards
Mr. Alfred Richardson Mr. Randolph E. Richardson Drs. Denise and Daniel Rodeheaver Mr. John B. Rohrbach and Ms. Joan H. Massey Mr. and Mrs. Joe T. Romine Ms. Kathleen G. Scott Mr. Doug Shriner Sid Richardson Museum Ms. Nancy C. Smith Mrs. Virginia S. Smith Mr. Mike Sorum Grady’s Restaurant Mr. Richard D. Steed, Jr. Mr. and Mrs. John M. Stevenson Dr. and Mrs. George H. Sullivan Mr. and Mrs. Jack R. Swain, Jr. Taverna Ms. Jo Ellen Teasdale Mr. James Toal Dr. and Mrs. William E. Tucker Mr. and Mrs. Steve Tuttle Mr. and Mrs. Jim Varnum Dr. and Mrs. Frederic H. Wagner Mrs. Kathleen Walker Mr. John M. Walters Mr. and Mrs. Stewart Ware Ms. Carolyn Watson Mr. and Mrs. Roy Whitfill Mrs. Jack G. Wilkinson Mrs. Suzanne S. Williams Mr. and Mrs. Ed A. Wilson Dr. and Mrs. Thomas Yorio
PARTNER LEVEL Mrs. Frederic G. Altman Mr. and Mrs. Theodore B. Gupton Dr. and Mrs. Charles Andrews Ms. Abhay M. Anello Arborilogical Services, Inc. Mrs. Kay F. Baldwin Mrs. Sara Beckelman Mr. Joseph D. Bennett Mr. Jason Best Mr. Morgan Bilbo Ms. Anne M. Blount Mr. and Mrs. Jesse M. Boulware Ms. Becky Brandenburg Ms. Jane A. Bruckner Mr. and Mrs. Jack Burgen Mr. and Mrs. Gilbert Burns Mr. Kerry Burns Dr. Art Busbey and Mrs. Janet Nilsson Dr. Brooke Byerley Cabot Creamery Mrs. M. Karen Carter Mr. and Mrs. Kenton L. Chambers Mr. James H. Cheatham Mr. Dominick J. Cirincione Mrs. Diane M. Cornwall Crosswinds Ranch Ms. Carol L. Davis
Anonymous Ramona and Lee Bass Perry and Nancy Lee Bass Corporation Amon G. Carter Foundation Fourth Century Trust The Rainwater Charitable Foundation Sid W. Richardson Foundation
Mrs. Ruth A. Anderson Virginia and Paul Dorman Ann and Tim McKinney Mrs. Gail Williamson Rawl Mr. and Mrs. Peter Sterling
Mr. and Mrs. Justin W. Allison Anonymous Mr. Jason Best Mr. and Mrs. James Chamberlain Mr. and Mrs. Samuel A. Cooke Mr. and Mrs. Paul Denavit Ms. Martha Dolman Joe and Mary Dulle Mr. Dirk E. Eshleman Ms. Jennifer Fitzgerald Mr. Robert George and Mrs. Frances Polster Mr. and Mrs. Jareld Hathcock Dr. John Janovec Mr. and Mrs. Gary L. Jennings Mr. and Mrs. Brian Keller Ms. Terrell Lamb Mr. and Mrs. Allan R. LaQuey Mr. Barney Lipscomb Dr. Lee Luckeydoo and Mr. John Dreese Mr. Andrew Lutz Mr. and Mrs. Stephen J. Marksteiner Mr. Gordon D. May Ms. Asha McElfish Ms. Judy MacKenzie Ms. Keri McNew Dr. and Mrs. B. O’Dell Molpus, Jr. Ms. Amanda Morris Ms. Amanda K. Neill Dr. and Mrs. William H. Neill Dr. and Mrs. Guy L. Nesom Ms. Marissa Oppel Mr. and Mrs. Arthur J. Rehman Dr. and Mrs. Jake B. Schrum Ms. Kathleen G. Scott Ms. Pamela Shelby Mrs. Michiko M. Stone Mr. Andrew Waltke Ms. Elizabeth A. Watson
The Ninnie L. Baird Foundation Mr. and Mrs. Harry E. Bartel Crystelle Waggoner Charitable Trust at Mr. Carroll W. Collins U. S. Trust Ernest and Keiko Couch Southwestern Exposition and Tammie L. and Calvin L. Crole Livestock Show Mr. and Mrs. Walter G. Dahlberg The Discovery Fund Margaret W. and James B. DeMoss David H. Diesslin and Deena Jo Heide Guardians Diesslin/Diesslin and Associates Anonymous Garvey Foundation Gunhild Corbett The Right Reverend and Mrs. Sam B. Dorothea Leonhardt Fund - Spending Hulsey Policy Fund - Communities Dr. and Mrs. Nowell Donovan Foundations of Texas Jeffrey P. and Carol A. Fegan Capt. Robert J. O’Kennon Mr. and Mrs. Craig R. Hamilton William E. Scott Foundation Mr. and Mrs. Tom Harrison Mr. and Mrs. Tim Sear Drs. Bonnie and Louis Jacobs George C. and Sue W. Sumner Fund of Karl and Nancy Komatsu the Community Foundation of North Mr. and Mrs. W. Cleve Lancaster Texas Pam and Bill Lawrence Mr. and Mrs. John L. Merrill Partners Mr. and Mrs. Tom O. Moncrief Ms. Tracy Holmes Mr. and Mrs. Stephen Murrin III Kresge Foundation Ms. Mary G. Palko Adeline and George McQueen Sear Family Foundation Foundation Mrs. Judy Secrest Jones Elaine and Tim Petrus Drs. Sara and Sy Sohmer The Ryan Foundation Mr. Richard Steed, Jr.
In MEMORY OF
Mrs. Frederic G. Altman Ed, Vicki and Madi Bass
Mr. Jon Beckelman Ms. Mary Ellen Boecker Mrs. Romona Goehman Jessie Griffin Mr. Ben Stone Doris Jennings, mother of Gary Jennings Ms. Margaret Hays and Mr. Chuch Barnes Bobby R. Lowrance Mr. Bill Harris Mr. Richard Hartman Ms. Betty Brague Ms. Martha Lou Kelly Lloyd Shinners Ms. Elizabeth Walters Honoring the life of Edith P. Hoyt
Mrs. Sara Beckelman Mr. and Mrs. William V. Boecker Mr. and Mrs. Lee F. Christi Dr. and Mrs. Dana Griffin III Dr. and Mrs. O. Winston Hampton Ms. Priscilla Harrier
Mrs. Karen and Mr. Mike Burkett Mr. and Mrs. Calvin Crole Mr. and Mrs. Jenkins Garret Mr. and Mrs. Robert L. Ginsburg Fund in the Community Foundation of North Texas Mr. and Mrs. Viktor Heinz Mr. and Mrs. Dan M. Reed Ms. Naomi Simmons Ms. Nancy C. Smith Mr. and Mrs. John M. Stevenson Mrs. Kathleen Walker Dr. and Mrs. Thomas Yorio Mr. Randolf E. Richardson
Mr. Dan Hays Mr. Dan E. Lowrance Mr. and Mrs. Stephen J. Marksteiner Mrs. Gail Williamson Rawl Ms. Jo Ellen Teasdale Mrs. Phillip K. Thomas Dr. and Mrs. Frederick H. Wagner Mr. John M. Walters Ms. Shirley D. Lusk
volume 21 no 1
Mr. and Mrs. Timothy L. Petrus Prestige Alliance, LLC Princeton University Press Mr. and Mrs. Thomas H. Puff Drs. Elizabeth and Scott Ransom Mr. and Mrs. Doug Renfro Dr. and Mrs. Sergio Sanchez-Zambrano Mrs. A. Hardy Sanders Tara Wilson Events Texas Christian University The Fort Worth Club The Grapevine Convention & Visitors Bureau Ms. Naomi Tune Wallach and Andrews, P.C. Mr. and Mrs. Michael Wallach Zambrano Wine Cellar
volume 21 no 1
Anonymous Mr. and Mrs. Edward P. Bass Mrs. Frank Darden The Discovery Fund Mr. H. Paul Dorman Fort Worth, Texas Magazine Frost Bank Greater Kansas City Community Foundation & Affiliated Trusts Dr. Susan Mitchell Ms. Mary G. Palko Mr. and Mrs. Victor Puente Mr. Richard E. Rainwater and Mrs. Darla Moore Mrs. Gail Williamson Rawl Drs. Sara and Sy Sohmer Mrs. John Reese Stevenson Mrs. Philip K. Thomas Mr. and Mrs. Greg Upp Mr. and Mrs. Michael Walker
1 July 2009 to 31 December 2009
Ms. Dixie Daymont Ms. Ann Sutherland Ms. Jerilyn R. Edmunds Ms. Rebecca Swadick Fort Worth Cats Dr. Ray C. Telfair II Mr. Christian Franklin Ms. Sarah Louise Terry Mr. and Mrs. Arthur J. Rehman Ms. Anita Tiller Ms. Aracely Gans Waverly Park Garden Club Ms. Joan Gaspard Ms. Margi L. White Mr. and Mrs. Walter Glasgow Ms. Anne A. Wilson Ms. Clarissa Golden Ms. Gloria T. Winfree Mr. and Mrs. Gary Grant Mr. Max Zischkale, Jr. Mr. and Mrs. Theodore B. Gupton Foundations Ms. Mary Haltom Bass Foundation Mr. and Mrs. John Hamilton Amon G. Carter Foundation Ms. Priscilla Harrier Sid W. Richardson Foundation Mr. Dan Hays Ms. Sue W. Heaberlin Matching Gift Mr. and Mrs. Jerry K. Hendrix Companies Mr. and Mrs. Houston Hill Texas Instruments Foundation Mr. and Mrs. Ronald Hoggard Drs. Patricia and Noel Holmgren Gifts to the Library Mr. Steve Houser Mr. and Mrs. Edward P. Bass Dr. and Mrs. Michael Huston Mr. William R. Burk Mrs. Elnora Jones Dr. George M. Diggs, Jr. Mrs. Jacqueline C. Kunke Dr. Hugh H. Iltis Dr. and Mrs. Thomas L. Kurt Drs. Bonnie and Louis Jacobs Ms. Kay Lamb Mr. and Mrs. Gary L. Jennings Ms. Erica Laughlin Ms. Joann Karges Lone Star Park Mr. Barney L. Lipscomb Dr. Ole J. Lorenzetti Ms. Amanda K. Neill Ms. Jane Lovedahl Capt. Robert J. O’Kennon Ms. Shirley D. Lusk Drs. Sara and Sy Sohmer Mrs. Howard McCarley Dr. Darrell L. McDonald Mr. and Mrs. Joe J. McEntire * Host Committee 2009 Award of Meadowbrook Garden Club Excellence in Conservation Gala Ms. Janet G. Miller Ms. Alison Mohoney Dr. Scott Mori Mrs. Amanda Morris and Mr. Andrew Heffley Ms. Carole R. Myer Native Plant Society of Texas Collin County Chapter Ms. Amanda K. Neill Old Home Supply In HONOR OF Ms. Sherry Owens Ms. Karen Kologe Mr. and Mrs. Robert J. Patton Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Yorio and Mr. P. Michael Peck Mr. and Mrs. John Stevenson Dr. and Mrs. Peter Raven Daddy’s Birthday Mr. and Mrs. Dan M. Reed Our Grandchildren: Rebekah, Breanna, Ms. Mary H. Reeves Alexandrea and Dominick Ms. Jesse T. Reinburg Mrs. Pat Harrison Dr. and Mrs. Manfred G. Reinecke Drs. Sara and Sy Sohmer Mr. and Mrs. James J. Richardson Ms. Ann M. Robinson Mr. and Mrs. Paul K. Rodman Mr. Bill Dunmire Dr. John C. Rosemergy Mrs. Iona Richardson Dr. John Rugelis Mr. and Mrs. Hal Lambert Dr. and Mrs. Robb H. Rutledge (Merideth and Margaret) Ms. Michelle Schneider Mrs. JoAnn Jarges and Ms. Shirley Lusk Dr. Varsha P. Shah Mr. Tim McKinney Mr. and Mrs. Daniel C. Shively Ms. Charlotte Sassman Ms. Naomi Simmons Vicki, Ed and Madi Bass Ms. Murphy Stewart All those who work at BRIT Mr. and Mrs. Tony Stone
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