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The Flora of North America will be a unique compendium of taxonomic information about the more than 17,000 species of plants that grow in the United States and Canada. This introductory volume presents information on the physical and biological factors that have affected the evolution and distribution of plant life throughout North America. Essays on such topics as geography, paleofloristics, and human impact are written to summarize current knowledge and to provide access to the relevant literature. The almost 100 drawings that accompany the introductory essays were taken from various 19th and 20th century works. They were chosen in part to illustrate plants mentioned within the text and in part as historical examples of the style and quality of botanical illustration from an earlier era to the present. Future volumes of Flora of North America will contain full descriptions of each species, along with information about the species' habitat, geographical range, and basic ecology.
List of contributors
History of the Flora of North America Project
A. Physical Setting of North America
1: Luc Brouillet and R. David Whetstone: Physiography and Climate of North America
2: Donald Steila: The Coils of North America
B. Paleofloristics, Paleovegetation, and Paleoclimates
3: Alan Graham: History of the North American Vegetation - Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) - Tertiary
4: Paul A. Delcourt and Hazel R. Delcourt: Paleoclimates, Paleovegetation, and the Paleofloras of North America During the Late Quarternary
C. Contemporary Vegetation and Floristics
5: Michael Barbour and Norman Christensen: Vegetation of North America North of Mexico
6: Robert F. Thorne: Phytogeography of North America North of Mexico
D. Humankind and the Flora
7: James Reveal and James Pringle: Taxonomic Botany and Floristics in North America North of Mexico: A Review
8: Ronald Stuckey and Theodore Barkley: Weeds in North America
9: Charles B. Heiser Jr.: Ethnobotany and Economic Botany of the North American Flora
10: George Yatskievych and Richard Spellenberg: Plant Conservation in the Flora of North America America Region
E. Classification Systems Used in the Flora of North America
11: G. Ledyard Stebbins: Concepts of Species, Genera, and Ranks
12: Warren H. Wagner Jr. and Alan R. Smith: Pteridophytes of North America
13: James Eckenwalder: Gymnosperm Classification
14: Arthur Cronquist: A Commentary on the General System of Classification of Flowering Plants
15: James Reveal: Flowering Plant Families: An Overview
Index to Authors
"The first volumes of FNA are finally out, and what a magnificent production they are. Volume 1 contains many fine essays giving an overview for the flora of The United States, Canada, and Greenland."
– Rudolf Schmid, University of California, Taxon Vol. 43 (February 1994)
"the first comprehensive continental flora of North America [...] "Vegetation", by M.G. Barbour and N.C. Christensen presents a clear, concise classification of major vegetation types. This volume is copiously illustrated with excellent maps, graphs, and photos, including numerous portraits of historical figures in North American botany [...] the botanical information is presented in a competent fashion.
– Western Journal of Applied Forestry
"This authoritative, many-headed work is centred at the Missouri Botanical Garden in St. Louis. The work draws authority from real plant specimens [...] This is a dictionary of plant species, the working vocabulary of plant biodiversity, as essential to its knowing, productive users as any big dictionary [...] its purpose is to become the arbiter of our plants for conservation and study."
– Scientific American, May 1994
"The Flora is the result of enormous effort and enthusiasm of many sicentists forming the Editorial Committee. [...] Almost all of the descriptions will be written by specilists in the practical groups. [...] The Flora of North America North of Mexico is a very good, gigantic synthesis of information published separately in individual taxonomical monographs and regional floras, that are now easily accessible to both botanists and laymen throughout the world. This is the most important fact for us European botanists, so we will anticipate the publication of the next volumes with considerable interest."
– Folia Geobotanica & Phytotaxonomica, 32/7, 1997