Biology | Summer Flowering Plants
B364 | 4135 | Bowman, M
Course Format: One 50-minute lecture and one 3-hour lab (MTWR). Labs
on Monday and Wednesday will usually involve fieldwork.
Requirements: One introductory biology course.
Course Description: Provides a broad, practical knowledge of the
diversity of summer flowering plants, with labs emphasizing training in
plant identification. Lectures discuss the morphological/taxonomic
characteristics of the approximately 40 most commonly encountered and/
or economically important families of flowering plants in this part of
the country, stressing features useful in recognizing these families.
In labs students analyze flower structures and apply resulting data to
dichotomous keys used to identify flowering plants to species.
Specimens analyzed are preserved as dried herbarium (museum) reference
material to facilitate species identification throughout the course and
beyond. Course is particularly practical for students of ecology and
the environment wanting to know what plant species occupy a given
region, for school science teachers engaged in interpreting and
teaching the local flora, and for those who are simply interested in
learning the kinds of wild plant species encountered in daily life for
life-enriching or other purposes. Course emphasizes wild flowering
plants, but the techniques learned apply equally to identifying
Required text: "Manual of Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States
and Adjacent Canada", second edition, by Henry V. Gleason and Arthur
Weekly Assignments: Make a full set of properly identified and labeled
dried herbarium specimens. Learn the progressively cumulative
characteristics of the plant families discussed and illustrated in
Exams/Papers: Three major lecture exams spaced at thirds through the
course and covering lecture notes and assigned readings. Three major
lab exams that are keying (identification) exams, usually on the same
days as the lecture exams. A cumulative weekly recognition/
identification quiz covering the species encountered in the labs each