RESOURCES: Plants of Paradise

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Science  31 Jan 2003:
Vol. 299, Issue 5607, pp. 635
DOI: 10.1126/science.299.5607.635e

This exuberant lobelia growing on the island of Kauai is one of more than 1300 species of plants endemic to Hawaii. You'll find a trove of taxonomic data on these unique species at Flora of the Hawaiian Islands, created by botanist Warren Wagner of the Smithsonian Institution and colleagues. The growing site now holds information on more than 800 genera of flowering plants and ferns. Pick your favorite species and dig up its distribution, conservation status, and the date and location for the first specimens collected. A parallel site covers the Marquesas Islands in the southern Pacific, another hot spot for plant diversity.

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