Botany Question

Ross Koning koning at ECSUC.CTSTATEU.EDU
Fri Aug 22 10:17:55 EST 1997

At 12:11 PM -0400 8/21/97, VEIUSA at wrote:
>Are microscopes used extensively in the study of plants, if so what
>variety, stereo or compound??  What types of magnification req'd?  Any
>specific aplication extremely common w/ stereo scopes?? I am new to this
>scientific specialty & would appreciate any insights extended.	Anyone
>who can satisfy my thirst of knowledge, please HELP!  Thx in advance to
>all responding experts in this field. Sincerely, Mark R.:)


I use microscopes extensively in my three botany courses.
For any decent botanical experience you need at least a
compound light microscope with 40x-400x magnification (1000x
is better!) and a stereodissection microscope with 10x-40x
magnification.  I currently have scopes with built-in flurorescent
illumination which are very nice.  The stereos have both
incident and trans illumination or both.  I like to have
reticules in the ocular lenses with measuring scales and
pointers.  I do not like the little wire pointers as the tips
never seem to be in focus with the specimen.  I do like a
mechanical stage on the compound scopes, but prefer types
that are easily removed for looking at gametophytes growing
on agar in petri dishes.  For some applications I do find
an external fiber-optic illuminator useful to get intense
lighting from one side (without frying the specimen).  This
throws strong shadows around almost-transparent objects (such
as root hairs) and makes them starkly visible.


Ross Koning                 | koning at
Biology Department          |
Eastern CT State University | phone: 860-465-5327
Willimantic, CT 06226 USA   | fax: 860-465-4479

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