BEN # 128

Adolf Ceska aceska at CUE.BC.CA
Sat Feb 24 15:14:43 EST 1996


                                                   
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No. 128                              February 24, 1996

aceska at freenet.victoria.bc.ca        Victoria, B.C.
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 Dr. A. Ceska, P.O.Box 8546, Victoria, B.C. Canada V8W 3S2
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MELINDA F. DENTON MEMORIAL LECTURE - SEATTLE - MARCH 5, 1996

Prof.  Warren Herb Wagner, Jr. : Ferns of Hawaii. Tuesday, 
March 5, 1996, 7:00 p.m. 220 Kane Hall, The University of  
Washington, Seattle. -  Admission complimentary.

The  Second  Annual  Melinda F. Denton Memorial Lecture is spon-
sored by the Department of Botany, University of Washington  and
the  Center  for  Urban  Horticulture,  and  the  Melinda Denton
Memorial Fund.


INTRODUCED BOG PLANTS, VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA - UPDATE
From: Frank Lomer, Honourary Research Associate, UBC  Herbarium,
   Vancouver, B.C. c/o <ubc at unixg.ubc.ca>

The  following  is  an  update  of "Introduced Bog Plants Around
Vancouver", BEN # 104 - July 2, 1995.

Azolla caroliniana Willd. I have now  seen  this  aquatic  plant
   from  numerous  places, especially around the extensive cran-
   berry fields on the northeast corner of  Lulu  Island,  Rich-
   mond.  This  species  can  be  invasive.  One large slough in
   Richmond (6m x 0.5km) was completely covered  by  a  mat  1cm
   thick.  The plants themselves were in turn covered by aphids.
   Also collected in a ditch at 10480 59th Ave., Delta. (Lomer #
   95-222) I have seen A.  caroliniana  sold  in  a  few  garden
   centers and this may be the source of our introductions.

Cyperus  erythrorhizos  Muhl.  - I mentioned that the introduced
   population at  Richland  Farms,  19611  Westminster  Highway,
   Richmond,  may  be  extirpated,  but  it is still abundant in
   cranberry fields about 1km west of where I found the original
   population.

Cyperus retrorsus Chapm. - A single plant,  1  meter  tall,  was
   growing  along  the  edge  of  a  hog fuel track skirting the
   perimeter of a large cranberry field. C. retrorsus is  native
   to  the  eastern  U.S.  and perhaps has not been collected in
   Canada before. Collected from  Richland  Farms,  Richmond  on
   September 28, 1995. (Lomer # 95-197)

Juncus canadensis Gay - I have found two new populations of this
   species.  It  grows  at  Burnaby Lake and along the edge of a
   tidal marsh, Pitt River, Port Coquitlam, 1km  north  of  Pitt
   River Bridge. (Lomer # 95-201)

Juncus  pelocarpus Meyer - Since I wrote the original article, I
   have found two new populations of this species. It  is  abun-
   dant  and  widespread in Burns Bog, Delta and in a gravel pit
   at 200th St.and 36th Ave. in Langley.

Muhlenbergia uniflora (Muhl.) Fern. - This  distinctive  clumped
   grass  with a diffuse purplish panicle is native to N.E. U.S.
   and S.E. Canada. Collected in a weedy  plot  in  a  cranberry
   field  north  of  the Richmond Freeway about 1km east of No.8
   Road, Richland Farms,  Lulu  Island,  Richmond.  Despite  the
   name,  the  plants  I  saw mostly had 2 florets. More than 50
   clumps were  seen  in  a  field  with  Cyperus  erythrorhizos
   (abundant),  Hypericum  boreale,  and  Lindernia  anagallidea
   (few). (Lomer # 95-195, 95-241)

Scirpus atrovirens var. georgianus (Harper) Fern. - Collected on
   June 23, 1995 on boggy shore of Burnaby Lake,  4km.  east  of
   Vancouver  (Lomer  #  95-131), growing with Juncus canadensis
   and Glyceria canadensis. A few days after  I  collected  this
   plant,  the  area was covered with gravel and this population
   seems to be extirpated.


A NATURALIST'S GUIDE TO THE ARCTIC

Pielou, C.E. 1994. A naturalist's guide to the  Arctic.  Univer-
   sity  of  Chicago  Press,  Chicago. 327 p. ISBN 0-226-66814-2
   [softcover] Price: CND $29.95

When we visited Dr. Chris Pielou in their  new  home  on  Denman
Island  quite a few years ago, she told us that her book on "The
world of northern evergreens" had just appeared and that she was
writing another book on natural history. She  would  not  reveal
what it was about, but our good mutual friend told us (about two
hours  later) that the book was to be on the Holocene history of
North America ("After the Ice Age" - published in 1991).

Chris Pielou was an eminent mathematical ecologist and  she  has
tried  all  her  life  to compress Nature into the bold print of
matrix algebra. In her books such as "Mathematical ecology" (two
editions), "The interpretation of ecological data...",  "Popula-
tion  and  community  ecology"  - just to name a few, you easily
find sections which you cannot read unless you have a degree  in
mathematics.  You  had to wonder, how the author saw the forest,
ecosystem, ecology, or a dandelion. Has she ever noticed them?

Open the "Naturalist's guide to the Arctic" and  you  will  know
the  answer.  No  bold matrix algebra, but a nice description on
how the Arctic works. You will learn about  astronomy,  climate,
geology,  the ocean, plants and animals and all the interactions
and causal relationships that you  have  to  know  in  order  to
understand  this  particular biome. Everything is written in the
nice, clear style and all the stories  are  fascinating.  I  was
looking  for  the  name  of an artist who drew the nice pictures
(ranging from the Arctic landscapes, through plants, birds,  and
mammals  to  the  Cariboo  Warble Fly) before I noticed that the
book was "illustrated with more than 400 of the  author's  draw-
ings and maps."

Congratulation, Chris!
P.S. - Richard, can you tell us what is Chris working on now?


APOTHEOSIS OF BRITISH COLUMBIA

Mackenzie,  Ian.  1995.  Ancient landscapes of British Columbia.
   Lone Pine Publishing, Edmonton.  128  p.  ISBN  1-55105-043-9
   [softcover] CND $24.95

"British  Columbia  is  a beautiful place," told us the clerk of
the Canadian Embassy in Prague in 1969  after  she  stamped  the
Canadian  visa  into our Czech passports. We understood what she
meant when we arrived to British Columbia few  days  later.  Ian
Mackenzie's book is an extraordinary document of this extraordi-
nary  province.  It  is the result of a six-year pilgrimage: Ian
Mackenzie has journeyed on foot  and  horseback,  by  canoe  and
kayak,  by  air,  river and ocean, to the most remote corners of
every region.

The photographs (we are told that they were selected from  about
30,000  images)  are  overwhelming. I have not been able to read
the text - whenever I opened the book  I  had  to  look  at  the
photographs  and  I  slipped into daydreaming about those sacred
places. From a short biography we learn that the  author  has  a
Master   degree  in  linguistics  and  speaks  and  read  eleven
languages. In addition to his gift to  communicate  through  his
photographs.

The  book  is  a  "pictorial geography of British Columbia." The
biogeoclimatic map at the end of the book will give you not only
the distribution of our biogeoclimatic zones, but also refers to
pictures taken in the respective zones. In the text,  paragraphs
printed  in  bold  italics summarize the characteristics of each
biogeoclimatic zone.  Great  idea  !  By  the  way,  when  Prof.
Vladimir  Krajina introduced the term "biogeoclimatic zone" even
many professional people laughed to the seemingly useless tongue
twister he had created. Twenty or thirty years later  this  term
is a part of a picture book directed to a very wide audience and
nobody  worries that the average reader would not understand the
concept of BIOGEOCLIMATIC zones.

The Lone Pine Publishing did an excellent  job  and  produced  a
remarkable  publication.  The  Lone  Pine  Publishing have their
offices in Edmonton - Lone Pine Publishing's phone number is  1-
800-661-9017.


FOOD PLANTS OF COASTAL FIRST PEOPLES

Turner,  Nancy  J.  1995.  Food plants of coastal First Peoples.
   Royal British Columbia Museum Handbook,  UBC  Press  &  Royal
   B.C.  Museum,  Vancouver-Victoria.  164 p. ISBN 0-7748-0533-1
   [softcover] Price: CND $24.95

This is the second edition of Nancy Turner's  1975  handbook  on
ethnobotany  of  British Columbia. The original edition has been
expanded and updated, with more colour photographs and with  the
most recent additional literature references.

LOOKING FOR THE LAWS OF NATURE

For the April 1st issue of BEN I would like to compile a collec-
tion of known and unknown biological laws and postulates.

E.g.:

Klinger's law: Peatbogs always start being formed on the leeward
   side of water bodies.

Ferdinand Kokoschka's principle: No excrement can be bigger than
   the organism that produced it.

Please, send me you favourites: aceska at freenet.victoria.bc.ca 

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