A Biodiversity Challenge in Saskatoon and Area September 15-18. Help us to track phenological (seasonal) changes in our biodiversity! Meet Forest Guide: Sam Ereke, BSc, MSc, Research Scientist. Look in your back yard, your house, bus stop, forest, park, greenspace, near the wetlands for wildlife! Record the discoveries on the iNaturalist app. YouTube videos providing iNaturalist hints and tips All you need is your smart phone to participate! Its so easy, download the free iNaturalist app, take pictures of signs of life including spider webs, sea shells, feathers, scat, tracks. As well as the pollinators, plants, mushrooms, insects, birds, squirrels and other wildlife
There are also Nature Connection BioBlitz Group Events
This Biodiversity Challenge taking place Sept. 15-18 is a great way to usher in #NationalForestWeek!
National Forest Week brings attention to our forests and trees from coast to coast across Canada. Our forests and trees provide habitats for wildlife, insects, polllinator species, birds and so much more! What is the ‘triple environmental emergency we are facing?
1. Loss of biodiversity 2. Climate change 3. Out of control pollution.
Out of control pollution. Our native biodiversity needs wild spaces, food and homes such as trees and forests provide in which to thrive. Forests, tree planting, and forest conservation initiatives are nature-based solutions towards climate action. Pollution, pesticides, herbicides are escalating the extinction events. Creating safe, organic forest spaces is a large step to halt and slow down the silent sixth mass extinction event of invertebrates, the planet’s bird food on wings. Ornithologists and botanists have noticed that the songbird, and raptor populations have declined by a staggering 48%. The monitored wildlife populations are reduced by a catastrophic 68%. A loss of forests and habitats have caused over 2/3 of our animal populations to totally disappear.
Richard St. Barbe Baker said it this way, “If a person loses one third of his or her skin, the person will die; if a tree loses a third of its bark, the tree will die, and if the world loses a third of its trees, the world will die. We live less that five minutes without air and the trees give us air we breathe. We live less than five days without water, and trees are absolutely essential in the water cycle. We live less than five weeks without food, and without the trees we could not grow food.” (Filson, Bruce K. October 7, 1982, Western People, p. 5)
This biodiversity Challenge is a great way to discover new trees and unexplored forest places, or perhaps it is a time to return to celebrate a favourite forest you love and are familiar with
While exploring taxonomy in Part 1, ‘Rosids’ is the most challenging taxonomic category to describe, and needed a chapter of its own. This is for information only, and it is the next two chapters which delve into the Genus ‘Rosa’ and the Species ‘R. Acicularlis Lindl., R. arkansana,R. woodsii’ which shall enable identification of the roses existing at Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area and George Genereux Urban Regional Park.
• Clade: Rosids. “Clear synapomorphies for the rosids have not been identified, although most rosids share several morphological and anatomical features, such as nuclear endosperm development, reticulate pollen exine, generally simple perforations of vessel end-walls, alternate intervessel pitting, mucilaginous leaf epidermis, and two or more whorls of stamens, plus ellagic acid”~Doug Soltis et al “Synapomorphies remain to be well identified for the group, but in general features such as two-to-several whorls of stamens, reticulate pollen, and nuclear endosperm are shared by most members.”~Thomas N. Taylor et al.
A synapomorphy is a shared (“syn”) apomorphy that distinguishes a clade, class or grouping from other organisms. Two or more plants share this same characteristic creating this special class. More than one descendant plants who show the same observable characteristics from an ancestral plant who mutated the new chacteristic by evolution. The ancient historical ancestors did not display the trait at all. The etymology of synapomorphy comes from the Greek “syn” meaning shared, “apo” meaning away from, and “morphe” meaning form or shape. Two or more different types of plants have a shared evolutionary characteristic which is received through reproduction. This new characteristic sets the new group of taxa apart from the plant’s historic form and traits .
Morphology is the study “logy” of the form or structure “morphē” and anatomical means the study or knowledge of the structure and function of the human body” (learned by dissection) from the Latin anatomia, from Greek, from ana- ‘up’ + tomia ‘cutting’ (from temnein ‘to cut’).
“The three principal types of endosperm formation found in angiosperms—nuclear, cellular, and helobial—are classified on the basis of when the cell wall forms. In nuclear endosperm formation, repeated free-nuclear divisions take place; if a cell wall is formed, it will form after free-nuclear division. “~Dennis Stevenson. Nuclear is that which pertains to the centre around which something is enveloped or organised from Latin nuculeāris (“relative to what pertains to small nut”). The tissue surrounding the embryo of flowering plant seeds is the endosperm from ενδο / endo meaning inside, within along with σπέρμα / seed, sow and σπείρω / spearo to disperse.
Reticulate means being Network-like in form or appearance from Latin reticulatus “having a net-like pattern,” from reticulum “little net.” Exine is the decay-resistant outer coating or layer of a pollen grain or spore from ex- ‘out’ and Greek, in- ‘fiber’.
Vascular plants have lignified plant tissues for moving water and minerals around the plant. Vessels, also called trachea, in botany, are the water or fluid conducting tissue of plants. Vessels have openings at both ends that connect individual vessel elements to form a continuous tubular vessel. These end openings are called perforations or perforation plates. They have a variety of shapes: the most common are the simple perforation (a simple opening)
The side walls of a vessel element have pits which are thin portions of the cell wall that adjacent cells can communicate or exchange fluid through.
Inter- between or interactive, between and Vessel container, receptacle, repository, holder.
Mucilage is a viscous or sticky substance found in vegetable material derived from Latin mucilago ‘musty juice.’ Leaves are thin, flat organs responsible for the photosynthesis of the plant. Epiderm means the outer layer of tissue in a plant from the etymology late Latin from Greek, from epi ‘upon’ + derma ‘skin’.
Whorl circular arrangement of stamens round a stem of a plant. The stamens being the male fertilizing organ of a flower, typically consisting of a pollen-containing anther and a filament.
Ellagic acid is a natural phenol antioxidant found in numerous fruits and vegetables. Phenol is a chemical compound, and an antioxidant is a substance that reduces damage due to oxygen
Rosids are a monophyletic group or of a “one-tribe-origin.” Monophyletic is a group of plants descended from a one single common evolutionary ancestor, taxon or ancestral group, especially one not shared with any other group. Monophyly has roots in two Ancient Greek words μόνος (mónos), meaning “alone, only, unique”, and φῦλον (phûlon), meaning “genus, species.”
Substituting the common or layman definitions above for the botanical terms which Soltis and Taylor use to define a rosid would read;
Rosids have shared plant characteristics and forms shown in current child plants from a single ancestral parent. The common traits are 1/ central formation and development of the tissue surrounding the embryo for the flowering plant seeds, 2/ a netlike form or appearance of the outer coating to the pollen grain, 3/ end openings at both the ends of the water conducting tubes, 4/ alternate water conducting tubes which have thin portions of the cell where adjacent cells can exchange water and fluids, 5/ a sticky layer on the top surface of the leaves, 6/ two or more circular arrangements of stamens, and 7/ contain a natural plant chemical compound which reduces damage to the plant due to oxygen.
What is the benefit of learning the Latin and Greek words which are the roots of botanical terms?
Can you create a botanical glossary of the words in this article?
What would your botanical glossary look like if the botanical terms and words were based on a different language rather than Greek and Latin roots?
Are biological scientific terms and classifications useful, or would it be more beneficial to use common words as descriptors? Why or why not?
Doug Soltis et al wrote this sentence; “Clear synapomorphies for the rosids have not been identified, although most rosids share several morphological and anatomical features, such as nuclear endosperm development, reticulate pollen exine, generally simple perforations of vessel end-walls, alternate intervessel pitting, mucilaginous leaf epidermis, and two or more whorls of stamens, plus ellagic acid.” How would you say it?
What causes plants to evolve, and change shape, characteristics, and features?
Explain how particular selective pressures acting on the native rose plants could influence the changes in the plants over time? Would native rose plants change because of flora and fauna in the area, fires or other disturbances, climate change criteris including drought or flooding, pollution, change in pollinating insects?
What are environmental factors which may change the plant morphology.
What are the plant traits inherited from its ancestors for each taxonomic classification?
The category or clade of Rosids continues to break down into the following plant taxonomy as shown in the diagram. Native roses are part of Rosales which are in the nitrogen-fixing clade which contains a high number of actinorhizal plants. Are native rose plants classified as Rosales similar to Fabales? Are they similar to Cucurbitales?
How do water and nutrients flow through plants?
Interpret and examine the presented phylogenetic trees to understand how the native rose plant fits in amid other plant organisms.
Please help protect / enhance your afforestation areas, please contact the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc. (e-mail)
Support the afforestation areas with your donation or membership ($20.00/year). Please donate by paypal using the e-mail friendsafforestation AT gmail.com, or by using e-transfers Please and thank you! Your donation and membership is greatly appreciated. Members e-mail your contact information to be kept up to date!
“St. Barbe’s unique capacity to pass on his enthusiasm to others. . . Many foresters all over the world found their vocations as a result of hearing ‘The Man of the Trees’ speak. I certainly did, but his impact has been much wider than that. Through his global lecture tours, St. Barbe has made millions of people aware of the importance of trees and forests to our planet.” Allan Grainger
“The science of forestry arose from the recognition of a universal need. It embodies the spirit of service to mankind in attempting to provide a means of supplying forever a necessity of life and, in addition, ministering to man’s aesthetic tastes and recreational interests. Besides, the spiritual side of human nature needs the refreshing inspiration which comes from trees and woodlands. If a nation saves its trees, the trees will save the nation. And nations as well as tribes may be brought together in this great movement, based on the ideal of beautifying the world by the cultivation of one of God’s loveliest creatures – the tree.” ~ Richard St. Barbe Baker.
“The trees and vegetation, which cover the land surface of the Earth and delight the eye, are performing vital tasks incumbent upon the vegetable world in nature. Its presence is essential to earth as an organism. It is the first condition of all life; it is the “Skin” of the earth, for without it there can be no water and, therefore, no life.”Richard St. Barbe Baker