The activities of hunting native plants in the wild—wandering, seeing, sleuthing, the aha! moment—are known collectively as “botanizing.” They invoke curiosity, keen vision, a basic knowledge of plant parts, problem-solving skills, and sometimes dogged determination.
Although, strictly speaking, botanizing means collecting plants for scientific study or investigating plants scientifically, we prefer to focus on the joys of the hunt.
This INPAWS Journal series by Rebecca Dolan, Ph.D., of Friesner Herbarium, Butler University, explores plant nomenclature and the basics of identifying native plants in the field.
“Cracking the Nutt. of Plant Name Authorities” Spring 2007
“Noted Indiana Authorities” Summer 2007
“The Right Stuff: Tools for Botanizing” Autumn 2007
“The Power of Observation” Winter 2007-08
“Of Sheets and Vouchers: Herbarium Resources” Spring 2008
“Make Your Own Dried Specimens” Summer 2008
“Surfing for Plant IDs” Winter 2008-09
Also by Rebecca Dolan, the Botany 101 series in INPAWS Journal presents the basics of plant identification by families.
Kay Yatskievych, who’s been documenting Indiana species for a number of years, counts 166 traditional families of native plants in Indiana outside of cultivation. She breaks these down as 18 fern and fern ally families, 3 coniferous families, and 145 flowering plant families.
Cyperaceae/Sedge Family Autumn 2006
Orchidaceae/Orchid Family Summer 2006
Apiaceae/Carrot Family Spring 2006
Scrophulariaceae/Snapdragon/Foxglove Family Winter 2005-06
Roseacea/Rose Family Autumn 2005
Lamiaceae/Mint Family Summer 2005
From INPAWS Journal
In these articles, inveterate botanizer Hilary Cox, Leescapes Garden Design LLC, captures the joys—as well as the trials and tribulations—of hunting for native plants in the wild.
“Seeds of Success Project” Spring 2008
Join amateur (but extremely skilled!) botanist Barbara Plampin, PhD, Life Director of Shirley Heinze Land Trust, in a romp through northern Indiana on the hunt for rare duneland treasures.
Barbara has chronicled her plant-hunting adventures in just about every issue of INPAWS Journal for the last ten years.
Look for the “Plant Detectives” series in archived issues of the Journal.