Showing posts from August, 2010

Carex aureolensis

It was just about a year ago when I first heard of Carex aureolensis.While walking with a fellow botanist he asked if I had noticed it in the Cyperaceae volume of the Flora of North America (vol. 23).I had not.He then informed me that it had been split out of Carex frankii, a species I had seen throughout eastern North America and in which I had never noticed much morphological variation.I believe my reaction was typical of most biologists upon hearing of taxonomic change in a group thought to be stable.My lips tightened, my heart rate increased and my vision became unfocused as my brain slammed into a low, deeply contemplative, gear.After a few minutes of test driving the idea in my head, I said with a slow and worried countenance “I don’t know if I buy that”.Trail talk is cheap.When I got home, I hit the index of FNA vol.23 and thumbed my way to page 519.Sure enough, there it was.I read the description, habitat and comments then flipped to the key characters. It all sounded legit; l…