Latest Botany News

In this Sept. 12, 2020, photo provided by the Center For Biological Diversity, is the scene where thousands of rare desert wildflowers have been dug up at Rhyolite Ridge, about 200 miles southeast of Reno, Nev. Federal officials are investigating the destruction of a significant portion of the remaining population of an extremely rare desert wildflower that's being considered for endangered species protection and could jeopardize plans to build a lithium mine in Nevada, the Associated Press has learned.  (Patrick Donnelly/Center For Biological Diversity via AP)

Massive damage of rare plants probed at Nevada mine site

Sep. 20, 2020 11:17 AM EDT

RENO, Nev. (AP) — State and federal authorities are investigating the mysterious loss of a significant swath of a rare desert wildflower that’s being considered for federal protection at a contentious mine site in Nevada with some of the largest untapped lithium deposits in the world. The Australian...

A black-eyed Susan flower grows among a variety of plants in an open grassland area at the May Prairie State Natural Area on Aug. 20, 2020, in Manchester, Tenn. Across much of the South, at least 90% of the native grasslands have been lost, the Southeastern Grasslands Initiative estimates. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

Efforts afoot to save South's disappearing grasslands

Sep. 20, 2020 9:08 AM EDT

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — In the early 2000s, a harvest of pine trees on Tennessee's Cumberland Plateau led to a remarkable discovery. Once sunlight hit the ground, the seeds and rootstock of native grasses and wildflowers that had lain dormant for decades began to spring to life. The area was originally...

President Donald Trump listens as California Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks during a briefing at Sacramento McClellan Airport, in McClellan Park, Calif., Monday, Sept. 14, 2020, on the western wildfires. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Easing fires not as simple as climate change vs. forest work

Sep. 14, 2020 11:22 PM EDT

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Deadly West Coast wildfires are dividing President Donald Trump and the states' Democratic leaders over how to prevent blazes from becoming more frequent and destructive, but scientists and others on the front lines say it's not as simple as blaming either climate change or the way land...

This 2020 photo provided by Tanisha Williams shows her in Lewisburg, Pa. Williams, a botanist at Bucknell University, knows exactly which plants she's looking for. But after being questioned by strangers in public parks, Williams, who is Black, has started carrying her field guides with her. “I've been quizzed by random strangers,” she said. “Now I bring my wildflower books and botanical field guides, trying to look like a scientist. It’s for other people. I wouldn’t otherwise lug these books.” (Tanisha Williams via AP)

Black scientists call out racism in the field and counter it

Sep. 13, 2020 3:55 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — University of Washington ecologist Christopher Schell is studying how coronavirus shutdowns have affected wildlife in Seattle and other cities. But when planning fieldwork, he also thinks about how he's perceived in neighborhoods where he installs wildlife cameras. “I wear the...

Goats helping keep invasive plants in check in forest area

Sep. 7, 2020 10:02 AM EDT

ELK CREEK, Mo. (AP) — Invasive plants can turn a grassy habitat for turkeys and quail into an overgrown thicket, so officials with the Mark Twain National Forest have turned to a decidedly low-tech way to manage them — goats. Brian Davidson, who manages the botany and invasive species program at the...

North Carolina teen wins National Park Service award

Sep. 7, 2020 12:02 AM EDT

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — At age 4, Virginia Ward could identify every tree in the woods near her home. By age 12, Ward was rappelling off the highest cliffs in Western North Carolina, helping Blue Ridge Parkway plant ecologist Dr. Chris Ulrey in his important work to study rare plants. Now 15, Ward, a...

California delays endangered species status for Joshua trees

Aug. 20, 2020 8:14 PM EDT

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California officials have postponed a decision on whether to grant the western Joshua tree protection under the state's Endangered Species Act. The Fish and Game Commission voted Thursday to delay action until September to allow more study. The vote came after a virtual meeting...

This photo provided by Inventive Resources Inc., shows a boat at the Lakeside Marina in South Lake Tahoe, Calif., equipped with ultraviolet lights that is proving effective at killing algae and other marine plants that eat away at Lake Tahoe's clarity. The UV vessel designed by Inventive Resources Inc. and operated by researchers at the University of Nevada, Reno, is designed to operate in the tight spaces of a marina or the open lake. (Inventive Resources Inc. via AP)

Ultraviolet algae killer aids bid to help Lake Tahoe clarity

Aug. 14, 2020 12:22 AM EDT

RENO, Nev. (AP) — Encouraged by three years of experimentation, scientists at Lake Tahoe plan to expand the use of ultraviolet light to kill algae and other invasive plants that eat away at the clarity of the mountain water. Researchers at the University of Nevada, Reno are monitoring the project and...

Botanist discovers new invasive grass in La Crosse County

Aug. 4, 2020 5:18 PM EDT

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A University of Minnesota botanist discovered a new invasive grass in Wisconsin last month, state wildlife officials announced Tuesday. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources officials said Amanda Weise was volunteering with the DNR's Rare Plant Monitoring Program on July 12 when...

This photo provided by the Center for Biological Diversity shows Tiehm's buckwheat blooming at Rhyolite Ridge in the Silver Peak Range of Western Nevada on June 1, 2019. A botanist hired by a company planning to mine one of the most promising deposits of lithium in the world believes the rare desert wildflower at the Nevada site should be protected under the Endangered Species Act, a move that could jeopardize the project, new documents show. (Patrick Donnelly/Center for Biological Diversity via AP)

AP Exclusive: Rare wildflower could jeopardize lithium mine

Aug. 4, 2020 2:05 PM EDT

RENO, Nev. (AP) — A botanist hired by a company planning to mine one of the most promising deposits of lithium in the world believes a rare desert wildflower at the Nevada site should be protected under the Endangered Species Act, a move that could jeopardize the project, new documents show. The unusually...