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Abstract Detail

Teaching Section

Lee, David [1], Kirchoff, Bruce [2], West, Stacy [3].

The Educational Value of an Urban Tree Flora: Wayside Trees of Tropical Florida.

We have written and published an urban tree flora for Miami, but covering all of south Florida and coastal regions further north. It was designed to be used by home owners and students unfamiliar with botanical terminology and scientific names. It begins with an extensive introduction that stresses the cultural and culinary importance of local trees, and also covers basic tree biology and ecology. A key to the 167 most common species (95 % of specimens seen) uses simple characters, is color-coded, and easily arrives at identification. The book describes 501 trees (including all of the 125 natives, and 68 palms), an estimated 99.9 % of the exotic and native species resident in the area. It is organized by family, stressing common names but including full scientific binomials with authorities, as well as locally used Spanish names. The book is illustrated with 1184 color photographs and 55 illustrations and drawings. We have used an on- demand publication model which drastically reduces overhead and warehousing costs, but increases the wholesale price. With the introduction of the iPad, Kindle and Nook the market for electronic books has grown rapidly. For this reason, and to give people a lower cost option, we also made the book available in pdf format. As with all small publishing ventures, especially for titles with a limited audience, it has been a challenge to publicize and sell the book. The most successful approach has been giving talks at local plant and nature societies and offering books at reduced price. Urban tree floras have great educational potential, especially if sufficient care is taken to keep the information entertaining and the terminology simple, and in using lots of color photographs. Other products may be derived from these floras, as I-Phone or smart phone apps, or expanded flexible keys that support the identification of every species.

Broader Impacts:

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1 - Florida International University, Department of Biological Sciences, Owa Ehan-167, Modesto Maidique Campus, Miami, Florida, 33199, USA
2 - University Of North Carolina At Greensboro, Department Of Biology, PO BOX 26170, GREENSBORO, NC, 27402-6170, USA, 919-304-2991
3 - 7801 SW 59th Avenue , South Miami, FL, 33143, USA


Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Session: 27
Location: Delaware A/Hyatt
Date: Tuesday, July 10th, 2012
Time: 11:15 AM
Number: 27010
Abstract ID:400

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