Archive for the ‘Publications, Apps, and Websites’ category

To Blog or To Tweet

December 8, 2012

That is the question.  There is only so much time in the day and lately I have been putting New York flora information out on our Twitter account, @newyorkflora, because it is fast and easy to do, especially from a smartphone.  I tend to look at Twitter more because it is easier to scan and pick up a lot of information in a short amount of time.  It is like looking at scores of microblogs. Before Twitter I would put all of our information here on the blog.  The blog has languished because of it but it is still a great place to put more extensive information and photos about a subject that can’t be tweeted. So I urge all of our blog followers to stay with us and consider following us on Twitter too.  All of these blog posts automatically get tweeted out.  Have a great December and Happy Holidays! – Steve Young

New Orchid Book for New England and New York

October 10, 2012

A new field guide to the orchids of New England and New York is now available.  The photos of Tom Nelson and the text of Eric Lamont (NYFA board member) have produced a very useful and beautiful book.  Characters are discussed in relation to closely related species which is very helpful for field identification and other useful information is included with every species.  There is a series of fruit photos in the front of the book which is also very helpful and unique.  How many times have you wished you knew what orchid it was that you were seeing in fruit.  The small size of the book is a plus for field use so there is no excuse for not knowing what species of Spiranthes that is. It is available on Amazon and in other fine bookstores. – Steve Young

New Rare Plant Conservation Guides Posted for Long Island

September 27, 2012

The New York Natural Heritage Program has recently posted over 30 new conservation guides for rare plants on Long Island. The guides were written thanks to funding from the New York State DOT. You can access the guides site by CLICKING HERE. If you find any errors please report them to Steve Young at young@nynhp.org. With additional funding from the NYS Office of Parks and Historical Preservation, more guides will be posted from Central and Western NY next year with the goal of having all rare plants covered by a conservation guide.

Plants Are Cool Too Episode Two Ready for View

September 23, 2012

Former NYFA board member Chris Martine, who now teaches at Bucknell University in Pennsylvania, has released his second in a series of videos about how plants are cool too.  This one shows the actual plant leaves (not fossils) that were preserved in rock 15 million years ago!

The New Protected Plant List is Available for New York

September 18, 2012

The Protected Native Plants Program was created in 1989 as a result of the adoption of the protected native plants regulation (6 NYCRR 193.3).

A new regulation was adopted in May of 2012. Changes to the regulation were made to incorporate new information compiled by the New York Natural Heritage Program. There have also been many changes in the scientific names of many of the plants.

To access the list CLICK HERE.

For any questions about the list contact Doug Schmid in the Division of Lands and Forests: daschmid@gw.dec.state.ny.us.

Search the Biodiversity Heritage Library

August 6, 2012

The Biodiversity Heritage Library is a consortium of natural history and botanical libraries that cooperate to digitize and make accessible the legacy literature of biodiversity held in their collections and to make that literature available for open access and responsible use as a part of a global “biodiversity commons.” BHL also serves as the foundational literature component of the Encyclopedia of Life (EOL).

Enter “New York, botany” in the search box and you can come up with a number of historical publications about botany in New York.  It includes famous titles like Torrey’s 1819 Flora of the NYC area as well as Taylor’s 1915 Flora of the Vicinity of New York.  To go to the Library CLICK HERE.

New Tree ID Videos Available from SUNY ESF

August 3, 2012

Folks interested in trees,

Christopher Baycura (ITS office at ESF) and I recently added 35 tree vignettes to this YouTube site:

http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLBE1197A3397CAE00&feature=plcp

for a total of 135 tree species covered, typically in about 2 minute HD videos that briefly summarize how to identify each tree, its ecological characteristics, importance, and whatever else came to mind. The list of native and non-native trees covered is attached. We’ve covered most of the trees that one would encounter in the woods or in landscapes in upstate NY and throughout the Northeast, and all the trees covered in my dendrology course that are cold hardy in CNY (many western US tree species). These vignettes are also all available for free on i-Tunes. Please feel free to share this information and link to others who might be interested.

Don Leopold

New Canadian Medicinal Plant Website. Many Species in New York.

May 1, 2012

From: Ernie Small & Paul M. Catling

Our book [Small, E. and Catling, P.M. 1999. _Canadian medicinal crops_. NRC
Press, Ottawa. 250 p.

CLICK HERE for the website.

This website is a comprehensive reference guide to important medicinal lants that are native to Canada. Chapters feature species such as ginseng, echinacea, Pacific yew, goldenseal, cascara, witch hazel, and kelp. The explosive interest in herbal products that provide medicinal or health benefits has resulted in a need for information. As well as being vitally important to the public and merchants, medicinal plant information is crucial to farmers, economists, teachers, the pharmaceutical industry, and the medical arts professions. Canada has the potential to capitalize on tremendous global marketing opportunities. We are in an excellent position to take advantage of the rapidly expanding market for so-called “nutraceutical crops” (those that are used to produce substances that are both medicinal and nutritional), because many of these are native to Canada and grow well here. This website meets the need for an overview of available information. The user can quickly find details on a particular topic by  examining the categories of information, which include: scientific, English and French names, description and classification, medicinal uses, non-medicinal uses, toxicity, chemistry, importance, ecology, agricultural and commercial aspects, human interest information, and selected key literature. All species are extensively illustrated and distribution maps are included. Introductory chapters address such topics as: the business of growing medicinal plants; the regulatory and legal framework in Canada for producing and marketing medicinal plants; and hazards associated with medicinal plants. Also provided are: an extensive glossary of medicinal and pharmacological terms; and extensive general list of books, review articles and research articles related to Canadian medicinal plants. The increased availability of this information is both important to the agriculture sector and of broad, general interest.

New Phenology Apps Help Track Bloom Times and Global Warming

April 9, 2012

One way to track the change in climate is to record bloom times of plants over the years.  There are three Smartphone apps that allow you to do this.  One is called PhenoMap and it allows users to collect data using Flickr accounts.  Another is called Natures Notebook and it allows users to record plant and animal life cycle events like migrations and plant phenology.  You first have to register with the National Phenology Network. It is also available for Android phones. The third one is called Project BudBurst for Android (iPhone coming soon they say) and it also includes a game called Floracaching which is like geocaching but with plants! I would be interested if anyone plays this game and how it turns out. – Steve Young

A screenshot from the Floracaching website.

The List of Plant ID Apps is Growing

April 9, 2012

The list of iPhone and iPad apps for plant identification is now up to 45 on our blog post.  Click Here to see the post and the list that includes apps from around the world.  We don’t have enough money to download and review them all but some look pretty nice while others look thrown together.  We couldn’t find any for the graminoids but they may be coming eventually.

One of the many screens that help you identify wildflowers of the Central and Southern Appalachians.


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