Systematics of Hydrophyllaceae (Boraginales)

Posts tagged “Jepson Manual

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botany and branching rainbograms


your flora is so big and your species are so many


register for upcoming Jepson Workshop: Introduction to California Plant Families

There is still space available (and still time) to register for the 8-10 August session of our Introduction to California Plant Families Jepson Herbarium Workshop at UC Berkeley! Click on the hyperlinked Dipsacaceae mouse below or HERE for registration info.


dipsacaceae mouse

Dipsacaceae mouse by our Workshop Coordinator. We’ll be learning about bracts of all sorts to learn and key plant families – involucres and involucels, spectaculars and receptaculars, cone bracts, cyathophylls, spathes, lemmas and paleas, and bractlets and bracteoles.

because i’m happy, fern.

because i'm happy, fern.

receptacular spectacular

PlantFamiliesSpectacularReceptacular copy

Introduction to California Plant Families, March 2014 Jepson Herbarium Workshop

UC Berkeley Jepson Herbarium Workshop Introduction to California Plant Families

Window collections for the 21-23 March 2014, UC Berkeley Jepson Herbarium Workshop Introduction to California Plant Families with Sheryl Creer and Christina Yunker. Papaveraceae, Garryaceae, Boraginaceae on the sill, looking out to California Hall, the Campanile, and the hundreds of plant families outside.

UC Berkeley Campus Map & TJM2/APGIII tour Magnoliids

A self guided tour of the UC Berkeley Campus for Magnoliids [TJM2/APGIII]. Downloadable PDF here.


TJM2_TableFamilies_gkw03192014_pp3 Jepson Plant Families Table. Included plant families in TJM2, compared with treatment in A flora of California [1909-1943], TJM1993, TJM2, Supplement 1 2013 [S1 2013], and Jepson eFLORA. TJM2 Phylogenetic Index Clade name in terminal column. Link to three page downloadable PDF here.

Romanzoffia californica




TJM2 Key to Groups Schematic

You can download the schematic used in the Jepson Herbarium Workshop ‘Keying with the second edition of The Jepson Manual’ handout by clicking on the image below [or here .png], or download a PDF suitable for printing as a single page. Note: the font is super small as a single page image! The full 2014 Workshop Handout is available as a PDF download on the Training and Teaching page.


U.S. Department of Awesome



Trigger helping me work at the Robert F. Hoover [OBI] Herbarium.

Trigger helping me work at the Robert F. Hoover Herbarium [OBI].

Practicing my handwriting with annotations of OBI Hydrophylloideae

Practicing my handwriting with annotations of OBI Hydrophylloideae


Keying is believing

Jepson Herbarium Polemoniaceae workshop. Keying is believing.

My head is so full! Jepson Herbarium Polemoniaceae workshop, day two. Day one was footloose and fancy free with Dr. Leigh Johnson, and photos are over at the tumblr. 

Navarretia breweri. From the past trip out to Mono County. One of my favorite Navarretes, and because Dr. Patterson confirmed the id via iphone Portuguese. Also because Tom Schweich's Mono list is just great.

Navarretia breweri. From the past trip out to the Bodie Hills and Mono County. One of my favorite Navarretes, and  because Dr. Patterson confirmed this id via iphone Portuguese. Also because Tom Schweich’s Mono list is just great. And because we are doing this subtribe tomorrow.

Gymnosteris parvula - because these really were all over Bodie when we were there.

Gymnosteris parvula – these were all over Bodie when we were there. My iPhone autocorrected this genus to Gym Nostrils. Silly iPhone. Names are everything.



Drought year

Scouted most of the Phacelia peirsoniana paratype localities [here, Sherwin Summit with Jim Linnberg and Trigger the service dog] and accessible Consortium of California Herbaria specimen sites on this trip based out of UC SNARL. Love that place. Too dry in some places for some of the target species I was looking for [also looked for Phacelia tetramera out on alkali sinks], but there are patches of blooms where precipitation seems to have struck and stuck.

A really good trip, and I wish I could have stayed out another week at least. Next year I hope it rains, and I can go in April and again in May to catch these taxa.

This was also the first trip I had an iPhone and definitely prefer my Nikon for photos. But for planning out a daily botany  itinerary with the Jepson eFlora, Consortium of California Herbaria search results, Google maps, and CalPhotos – I used that iphone nonstop when there was areas with service. Tom Schweich’s area list for Mono County is AWESOME – full of great resources, as is Tim Messick’s Bodie Hills flora.


Phacelia bicolor


Phacelia tanacetifolia, Fresno County

Phacelia tanacetifolia, Fresno County

twas brillig – my spring Jepson Workshop sessions are complete

Additional workshops using these [high] magnificence are still open and spots can be reserved with our Jepson Coordinators! And don't forget the August 17th Jepson Workshop on Mastering the Jepson Manual. I know a tarweed or two that might be around.

Additional workshops with all this magnificence are still open and spots can be reserved with our Jepson Coordinator! And don’t forget the August 17th Jepson Workshop on Mastering the Jepson Manual. I know a tarweed or two that might be around.

Also, check out the Jepson Herbarium Workshop tumblr for the curated photographs from each weekend workshop, and just a few tabs over are the uploaded handouts from each workshop available as a pdf download.

Phacelia [?] var. heliophila

This is why I love nomenclature, I love taxonomy, I love collections, I love digitized archives and libraries offsite, and I love going to the field and finding plants that match protologues. Because even in California, even in 2013, even in Phacelia, there are mysteries and there is disagreement. What is this? I have an idea, but I have to rigorously test it. Stay tuned [and on botany time, so 3+ yrs for data collection, analysis, and publication].

This is why I love nomenclature, I love taxonomy, I love collections, I love digitized archives and libraries offsite, and I love going to the field and finding plants that match protologues. Because even in California, even in 2013, even in Phacelia, there are mysteries and there is disagreement. What is this? I have an idea, but I have to rigorously test it. Stay tuned [and on botany time, so 3+ yrs for data collection, analysis, and publication].

Jepson Workshops Blog

The Jepson Herbarium Workshops has a great tumblr going.

Part inspiration from past workshops, and part anticipation for the upcoming year. Share your favorite photos from workshops you have attended with our Jepson Workshop coordinator via email. I think my favorite so far is  from the ‘planning’ post. Although I am partial to that Phacelia Friday.


This is a typical scene of botanists starting to scatter across the landscape at a stop from the 2012 White Mountains workshop.



Another Friday 13th

Another great Jepson Manual 101 Clinic on Friday before the Potentilla Jepson Workshop this weekend. And again, I learned more than I was anticipating – and really appreciate the enthusiasm of everyone who participated. Staci Markos gave a great introduction to the second edition, the new and improved features of the Jepson Manual, and additional online resources. Mentha pulegium was the example on page 840 to show how the different font and structure for the organization of the book works – and to show that the taxon isn’t in the index. Also, by keying it out in preparation for the clinic I found out that although it smells great, it is TOXIC.

The Clinic was in the Botany Seminar room with these really amazing new microscopes that have been donated to the Jepson Workshops. The dissection kits help with looking at the 4 fertile stamens and 1 staminode in Scrophularia californica, and the scopes were great to look at the shaggy hairs on the leaf axis of Rosa californica. Barbara Ertter stopped by to check in with participants for the workshop, and kindly confirmed the identification of the rose!

We also keyed out Delphinium californicum too. I absolutely did not plan having all the specific epithets be ‘californica’ or ‘californicum’, it really just happened. The Delphinium was in open flower, with some flowers still in bud at the distal end of the inflorescence. From the road looking into the chaparral hillside I thought it was in total bud, and climbed up just to see if it was worth coming back in a month or so. I collected the inflorescence on July 12th [the day before the clinic] and the key in the manual has one character as blooming generally June or earlier, and the other as July or later. Maybe the inflorescence was blooming since June? Other inflorescences in the area were still in bud, but maybe it is a late year on the coast. The key has other characters that work great, and I was really thrilled to learn a new Delphinium species.

We also keyed out Eriogonum latifolium and I learned new terminology about flower stipes! I also brought in a lot of other things and of course there were some phacelias!

I have enjoyed these clinics, which have been held on various Fridays throughout the spring and summer. Check in with the UC & JEPS herbarium [on facebook too] and the  Jepson Workshops [, (510) 643-7008] for more information.

Potato cupcakes

The Jepson Manual celebrated the publication of the second edition with a party at the UC and Jepson Herbarium on Saturday – which was fantastic. I had a ton of people sign my copy where they wrote the treatments, or their favorite genus or sponsorship page. There was also a silent auction to support the Botany Library, and I managed to win some super fantastic books! Also – our librarian, Amy Kasameyer, found the perfect description for my new favorite food [besides birthday cake oreos]. Shown below what she coined as ‘potato cupcakes’ from the botany party. I ate nearly an entire platter. No joke.


Field Notebooks

Michael Eisen wrote a blog post last year noting a super amazing inclusion of the digitized lab notebooks as part of the supplemental materials [Lang and Botstein 2011]. My lab work has somewhat been on pause with classes [IS290 and IB200A] and studying for orals this semester, but come the end of April – I am going to do this with my lab notebooks as I progress through experiments in the Baldwin genomics lab and the MPL.

Along that vein, I will also put up my field notebooks from this year, probably the whole notebook at the end of the season, and additional notes from individual collection events posted as updates inside posts – this one includes the corolla dissections and sketches of ovules. And yes, after upload I realized that penciled drawings don’t scan as well as inked illustrations – so will keep that in mind for the future.


Phacelia californica GKW365 collection notes

Posting my field notebooks serves as part organization, part transparency, part scholarship, part archival, part communication, part trying to be a better practitioner of science. I also believe that creating a clear link between the collection event and the accessioned specimen may motivate me to decrease the time between collection and accession, which can contribute to the lag time in species descriptions – not that I am collecting anything new [Bebber et al. 2010].

I benefit so much from reading the online digitized field notebooks of Willis Linn Jepson, Reid Moran and others [the Smithsonian has an entire Field Book Project – AMAZING, go look at it], and visiting archives to read field notebooks of the Cantelows and John Thomas Howell at California Academy of Sciences. Other archives I really would like to visit are those of Marcus E. Jones, because Parry stole my rose [Dorst 2010; Jones 1930].

The field season is slower this year due to drought and next year will be my big field year, but there are still opportunities to describe some of the field diversity in a group like the [mostly Californian] Ramosissimae, which includes Phacelia distans and Phacelia malvifolia. I have been really inspired by the amazing scientific illustrations that John Myers has been doing for the FNANM treatment, and Dr. Strother also encouraged me [in the words of Terry Allen] to practice drawing. I limned the basics from the Phacelia californica that I collected for the Jepson Manual 101 clinic, and pressed the voucher in my Herbarium Supply plant press. I am always interested in best practices for collecting specimens and making vouchers [see one of M.E.Jones writings on collecting here], and not just because it is part of the IS290 class project for the UC Berkeley Botanic Garden!

Plant Press with Parachute Straps of Fire and Poppy

Literature cited

BEBBER, D. P., M. A. CARINE, J. R. I. WOOD, A. H. WORTLEY, D. J. HARRIS, G. T. PRANCE, G. DAVIDSE, J. PAIGE, T. D. PENNINGTON, N. K. B. ROBSON, and R. W. SCOTLAND. 2010. Herbaria are a major frontier for species discovery. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 107(51):22169-22171.

DORST, D. 2010. The surf guru: stories. New York, Riverhead Books.

JONES, M. E. 1930. Botanical reminiscences. Contributions to Western Botany 17:1-31.

LANG, G. I., and D. BOTSTEIN. 2011. A Test of the Coordinated Expression Hypothesis for the Origin and Maintenance of the GAL Cluster in Yeast. PLoS ONE 6(9):e25290.

How to end Spring Break – with learning

Jessica Peak and Rebecca Stubbs led another great Jepson Manual 101 clinic yesterday. Both are finishing up their studies at SFSU in Dr. Patterson’s lab, and both are defending their theses very soon [good luck to both of you!]. Jessica studies Calochortus (Liliaceae) [read more at her research website here], and Rebecca studies Polemonium (Polemoniaceae) [read all about it on her research website here]. It was super fun, with a big group of great botany people in VLSB 3030. I learned the difference between a currant [no nodal spines] and a gooseberry [nodal spines], and we played with stigmatrophy in Mimulus aurantiacus (Phrymaceae). Plants do move, sometimes in surprising ways – and not just taxonomically!

Loading up the TriggerPhacelia californica for Jepson 101 ClinicWest Coast commuteDid I turn the thermocycler on?












I brought in the perennial Phacelia californica (Boraginaceae) for the clinic, and grabbed a few stills of the commute from the first test video run with my brand new GoPro camera. The clinic was busy from set-up to end, and I meant to take photos of the floriferous room and enthusiastic microscope and dissection work, but totally didn’t. Next time! And I am super excited to use this for field work. It is tinier than I thought possible, and so so cool. My usual superlatives are failing me in describing how and why this is incredibly awesome, and the possibilities for my science.

Jepson Manual 101 clinics

second edition, the Jepson Manual, Vascular Plants of CaliforniaThe Jepson Herbarium is celebrating and educating! JEPS is hosting Jepson Manual 101 clinics, which are super short and super fast Friday versions of the longer [but also super fun] Jepson Workshops. It is a great way to use your new Manual [extra copies also available for sharing], get an overview of the expanded & improved & new stuff in the book, and key out fresh material as a group. Jepson workshops have a sweet set of new microscopes and plenty of dissection kits, and the Herbarium conference room in VLSB 1002 is absolutely great. Also, snacks.

Staci Markos and our Jepson Workshop coordinator led the way, and we had a great time with participants for the first clinic yesterday. We successfully keyed Fragaria chiloensis and Ribes sanguineum var. glutinosum. I learned a ton! Have you looked at a hypanthium today? Was the receptacle strawberry-like? Was it red, or was it purple?

Bringing in material to the herbarium was fantastic as preparation, so many names have changed since the 1993 Manual, and it is remarkable to have all of these updates in one book. It is gnarly, but the 1993 Manual and the 2nd edition Manual are entirely different books. I was thinking that I could refer back and forth between the two, work on my biceps, using the online Jepson Interchange to help my learning curve. But the 2nd edition is completely new. Completely different. Completely awesome. The index is now one of the first places I go to, because my book spine isn’t broken in yet. I brought in Taraxia ovata [formerly Camissonia ovata], Polypodium californicum, Romulea rosea var. australis, and Castilleja wightii, which Margriet Wetherwax kindly identified for me [it is a perennial, not an annual like I thought]. And she signed my new Jepson! Now I have to go look for the red flowered ones too [I brought in the yellow flowered ones yesterday], and watch for hummingbird pollinators!

I am looking forward to more of these clinics, which will be held on various Fridays throughout the spring and summer. Check in with the UC & JEPS herbarium [on facebook too] and Jepson Workshops [, (510) 643-7008] for more information.



Good plants, good people

It is fantastic when the really great people get recognition for their hard work [check out the SFSU article here, ‘Botanists help launch new edition of California’s premier plant guide’]. Thanks for a wonderful new Jepson manual, and all the new discoveries in the book and the field, and the amazing online Jepson eFlora.

Patterson is so San Francisco

San Francisco State University