Plants of Western Washington Collection

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Acer circinatum - Vine maple
Acer circinatum (Vine maple)

This collection consists of nearly 600 views of plants commonly found in Western Washington. The views are not diagnostic in that one would rarely be able to determine technical features such as the numbers of stamens. However, most provide "aspect" level identification such that in most cases, a person with a little training could identify the plant illustrated to species.

Considerable ecological information is also provided. One can search for species within a plant family, species with the same wetland indicator value, species found in particular locations, or species not native to the state.

This collection was designed as an aid to student learning and helps to augment laboratory and field trips in Botany 455 at the University of Washington. This collection is a work in progress and is not error-free. A note of caution is warranted. In some categories, for example, typical habitats, the habitat listed is usually not the only habitat. Likewise, "location" indicates only one general area where the plant occurs, but does not provide its geographic range.

Note also that many plant names have changed within the last few years. The most recent verified name is used here. Older names, particularly those beloved by experienced botanists in this area are provided in the synonymy category.

The database may be searched as follows:

Title, Latin: The currently valid name of a species of interest may be entered here. Using only the genus will give all members of the genus.

Accession number: This will be of little use since it only reflects the order in which slides were selected.

Plant Status: This refers to the geographic origin of a species. Plants may be native to the state; weed, introduced accidentally; or ornamental, escaped and naturalized ornamental).

Growth Form: This is the general type of plant. Plants may be searched for by these categories: Tree, Shrub, Mat, Prostrate, Rhizome, Fern, Rosette, Erect, Tufted, Bulb, Annual, Biennial, Insectivore, Floating, Vine.

Notes: This refers to the type of view, such as Aspect, Leaves, Fruit, Flower, Cones, Seed, or Stem. Note that Aspect may be of sufficient scale as to permit identification, or it may not.

Common name: This refers to the name preferred in either Hitchcock or Pojar.

Successional status: Native species have been classified broadly into three categories. Note that a species may occur in two or more such categories. To find a species use one of the following codes: P=pioneer, gets to disturbed sites fast; S=seral, invades after first species, may not persist; C=climax, found in stable vegetation.

Most introduced species are pioneers or seral species, but they differ in the kinds of habitats the most frequently occupy. For these species, the following descriptors will retrieve species that frequency occur together: lawns, rocky, pasture, disturbed, fields, meadows, woods, tidal marsh, marsh, dunes, prairies, crops, hedges, gardens, wetlands, trampling).

Wetland status: Most plants in our flora have been assigned a wetland status (from Reed, P. R. et al., 1988, National List of Plant Species that occur in wetlands. U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service). Species that are not on this list are assumed to be Upland or Facultative upland and have been so indicated.

The codes are: UPL=upland, never in wetlands; FACU=facultative upland, seldom in wetlands; FAC=facultative, indifferent, presence does not indicate presence or absence of wetland; FACW= facultative wetland, usually in wetland; and OBL=obligate, always in a wetland.

Klinka (and others, 1989, Indicator species of Coastal British Columbia) produced lists of species that are more or less confined to a single category of climate, moisture or nitrogen. The status of additional species not considered by them have been determined, though not so precisely, by del Moral. To find species that indicate a category, use the terms listed below.

Climate indicator status: alpine, subalpine, upper montane, lower montane, lowlands, dry interior (dry interior refers to lowland and lower montane inland species).

lowland and lower montane inland species: This category is essentially an elevational factor, except that lowlands refers to species found west of the Cascades, and dry interior refers to inland species.

Moisture indicator status: xeric, dry, moderate, moist, wet, hydric. Many species are not listed because they have broad moisture tolerances (e.g., moist to dry).

Soil nitrogen indicator status: There are two sets of entries. Klinka's terms have been converted to Poor, Moderate and Rich soils, indicating nitrogen status. The terms Low, Medium and High were determined by Roger del Moral, from various sources, for species not covered by Klinka, or which have indicator value in our region. These terms refer to general fertility, not to nitrogen.

Typical Habitats: This category refers to typical habitat of the species. These terms may be used with * or with a + sign to combine terms: alkali, alpine, avalanche, beaches, bluffs, bogs, Cascades, clearings, cliffs, coastal, coniferous, conifers, dark, deciduous, disturbed, ditches, drier, dry, dunes, endemic, fell fields, fields, fertile, fires, forests, gardens, glades, grassy, gravel, heath, hedge, high, humus, inland, interior, lawns, litter, lowland, margins, marsh, meadows; moist, meadows, montane, mossy, mudflow, naturalized, open, parasite, pasture, pond, prairies, pumice, ridges, rocky, roadsides, sagebrush, salt marsh, sandy, sites, slopes, snow, sphagnum, stream banks, swamp, subalpine, talus, tidal, tide flats, tree line, understory, upland, valleys, volcanic, waste, wet, wetlands, woodlands, woods.

Synonymy: If you know the old name, you can find your species by using this category.

Plant families: You may wish to see all the members of a particular group to gain a better understanding of the common features of the group. The family names are the more recent ones, not the conserved Linnaean names. The families represented include: Aceraceae. Adiantaceae, Amaranthaceae, Anacaaradiaceae, Apiacea, Apocynaceae, Aquifoliaceae, Araceae, Araliaceae, Aristolochaceae, Asclepiadaceae, Aspleniaceae, Asteraceae, Berberidaceae, Betulaceae, Blechnaceae, Boraginaceae. Brassicaceae, Campanulaceae, Caprifoliaceae, Caryophyllaceae, Celastraceae, Cheopodiaceae, Convolvulaceae, Cornaceae, Crassulaceae, Cupressaceae, Cuscutaceae, Cyperaceace, Dennstaedtiaceae, Droseraceae, Equisetaceae, Euphorbiaceae, Fabaceae, Fumariaceae, Gentianaceae, Geraniaceae, Grossulariaceae, Hydrophyllaceae, Hypericaceae, Iradaceae, Juncaceae, Lamiaceae, Lemnaceae, Liliaceae, Lycopodiaceae, Lythraceae, Malvaceae, Menyanthaceae, Nyctaginaceae, Oleaceae, Onagraceae, Ophioglossaceae, Orchidaceae, Oxalidaceae, Papaveraceae, Pinaceae, Plantaginaceae, Plumbaginaceae, Poaacea, Polygonaceae, Polypodiaceae, Portulacaceae, Primulaceae, Pyrolaceae, Ranunculaceae, Rhamnaceae, Rosaceae, Rubiaceae, Salicaceae, Santalaceae, Saxifragaceae, Scrophulariaceae, Solanaceae, Taxaceae, Urticaceae, Valerianaceae, and Violaceae.

Location: This refers to the general location of the photo, which helps with range or habitat. A species is unlikely to be confined to the particular location (but see "endemics"). The categories are: Seattle; Puget Sound; Cougar Mt.; Tiger Mt.; Whidbey Is.; Mima Mounds; Cascades; E. Cascades; N. Cascades; Enchantments; Wenatchees; Mt. Rainier; Mt. St. Helens; Olympics; NE Olympics, and W. Olympics.

For more information about this collection, contact Dr. Roger del Moral in the Department of Biology.

ive data using CONTENTdm software.