Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

opening of the second volume its name was changed to the Botanical Gazette, and the name of M. S. Coulter was added as joint editor. In 1883 by a reorganization of the management, John M. Coulter, Charles R. Barnes and J. C. Arthur became editors, an arrangement which proved to be so satisfactory to the botanists of the country as to become permanent.

The next few years were trying ones for the ambitious editors, but the impetus given to botanical thought by the incoming of modern methods in teaching and study, and perhaps, alsu, by the organization of the Botanical Club of the American Association for the Advance ment of Science, proved helpful in many ways. The Philadelphia (1884) and Ann Arbor (1885) meetings of the Botanical Club created much botanical enthusiasm, the results of which accrued to the benefit of the Gazette.

The beginning of its second decade saw it much enlarged, improved in typography and apparently well established in the confidence of American botanists. Year by year it was still further increased in size, better paper was used, and the quality of the matter steadily improved. From the fifty-two pages of short, and mostly local, notes of volume I, we turn to the five hundred and sixty eight pages of structural, physiological, ecological, systematic and paleontological matter in volume XX. With the opening of the twenty-first volume an additional enlargement was found to be necessary, the numbers averaging sixty-five pages each.

In the earlier volumes there were no plates, the first one occurring in volume VI, illustrating an article by J. C. Arthur on the trichomes of Echinocystis lobata. In the twentieth volume there were thirty-seven plates, while for the first half of 1896 the number was twenty-nine.

The last stage in the evolution of this important factor in American botany was reached a few months ago when its financial management was transferred to the University of Chicago. It thus happily becomes an endowed institution, and the editors, relieved from all anxiety as to its business management, are free to develop it along strictly scientific lines. To the three editors whose efforts have given it the foremost place place among botanical journals are hereafter to be added several “associate editors "; at present these are G. F. Atkinson, V. M. Spalding, Roland Thaxter and William Trelease. Under the new regime it promises to be more cosmopolitan than before, and accordingly we are assured that the names of one or more European botanists will soon be added to the corps of editors.

This factor in botanical science has thus been a growth, and it represents to-day much more than so many pages of printed matter. It has grown and developed as the science of botany has grown and developed in this country. When we look over the earlier volumes with surprise at the little notes which fill the pages, we must not forget that American botany had not then generally risen above such contributions. It is true that we had a few masters in the science, with Dr. Gray still in his prime, but these masters wrote little for general reading, and their technically systematic contributions were mostly published in the proceedings of learned societies. The one thing which stands out to-day in sharp contrast with the botany of two decades ago is the very great increase in the number of masters in the science who are making liberal contributions from many different departments. The many-paged Gazette of to-day, with its rich variety of matter, differs no more from the four-page Bulletin of 1876 than does the botany of the two periods.-CHARLES E. BESSEY.

The North American Species of Physalis and Related Genera.-In a recent number of the Memoirs of the Torrey Botanical Club (Vol. IV, No. 5) Mr. P. A. Rydberg publishes an important contribution to our knowledge of our species of Physalis and related genera. Every one who has attempted to accurately identify any of the native species of Physalis knows well how difficult and discouraging the task has been. Commenting on this Mr. Rydberg says: The is not that the descriptions are so badly drawn, but that only about one half of the actual number of species have, as a rule, been recognized."

After a critical discussion covering fifteen pages the author characterizes the six genera which he includes in his monograph. These are Margaranthus, with four southwestern species; Physalis, with thirty-nine species; Quincula, with one Rocky Mountain species ; Leucophysalis, with one species of the northern United States and Canada; Chamæsaracha, with four species of the southwestern United States ; Oryctes, with one species from Nevada.

Throughout the paper the nomenclature and synonymy receive full attention, the citations being unusually complete. The descriptions are concise, and apparently drawn with great care. And last, but by no means least, there is a full index of species and synonyms given at the end of the monograph. Altogether it is an unusually good piece of work.-CHARLES E. BESSEY.

[ocr errors]

reason

Professor Prentiss.-The recent death (August 14th) of Professor Albert Nelson Prentiss of Cornell University calls for more than a mere brief mention, Born in Cazenovia, N. Y.; May 22, 1836; educated in the Oneida County Seminary, and the Michigan Agricultural College (B.Sc., 1861 and M. Sc., 1864). After short periods of service in the engineering corps of the United States Army, and the public schools of Michigan he became professor of botany in the Michigan Agricultural College (1863 to 1868). After six years of service he was called to the chair of botany in Cornell University (1868), where he remained for twenty-eight years when on account of failing health he was made professor emeritus (1896). In these years of work Professor Prentiss was emphatically a teacher. The building and equipment of his department, and the training of men who went out to be professors in many colleges, left little time for investigations and the preparation of papers. He chose to impress his thoughts upon men rather than upon paper, and he will be remembered not as a writer, but as a teacher. His life shows how much more effective our work is when we teach men directly by our spoken words rather than through our printed papers.-C.E.B.

The Nomenclature of Mycetozoa.-Professor Mac Bride has been studying the question of nomenclature among these organisms (plants he calls them, and, therefore his results are noticed bere) and finds great difficulty in applying the priority rule" to the solution of the problem. He calls attention to the well-known fact tbat the earlier botanists did not understand the nature of Mycetozoa and that their descriptions and even their figures in many cases are upintelligible. Rostafinski a little more than twenty years ago gave us the first rational account of the group, and for the first time gave us descriptions by means of which we may know certainly what he had in hand when be applied a particular name. His nomenclature is, therefore, to a large extent the earliest which is authentic. Practically all earlier descriptions are unrecognizable, and therefore, Rostafinski had to take up the work de novo. Professor Mac Bride says: “ The fact is that when Rostafinski gives credit to his predecessors it is for the most part purely a work of courtesy and grace; there is nothing in the work itself to command such consideration.” He therefore concludes that “the man who in his search for priority ascends beyond Rostafinski, does it at the risk of endless confusion and uncertainty in the great majority of cases" and that for these the initial date must be that of his great work, “Sluzowce Monografia" in 1875.-CHARLES E. BESSEY.

The Flora of Wyoming.–Professor Aven Nelson of the University of Wyoming recently issued a valuable " First Report on the Flora of Wyoming,” based upon field work in 1892 (by Professor Buffum), 1894 and 1895 by Professor Nelson. The catalogue of plants includes 1118 species of Spermatophytes, 14 Pteriodophytes, 26 Bryophytes, 3 Algæ, 8 Fungi and 7 Lichens, making a total of 1176. The trees of Wyoming are listed as follows: Rocky Mountain Yellow Pine (Pinus ponderosa scopulorum), Rocky Mountain White Pine (P. flexilis), Lodge-pole Pine (P. murrayana), Engelmann's Spruce (Picea engelmanni), Blue Spruce (P. pungens), Douglas Spruce (Pseudotsuga douglasii), Red Cedar (Juniperus virginiana), Black Cottonwood (Populus angustifolia), Rydberg's Cotton wood (P. acuminata), Quaking Aspen (P. tremuloides), Sand-bar Willow (Salix longifolia), Almond Willow (S. amygdaloides), two other species (S. flavescens, S. lasiandra), Green Ash (Fraxinus viridis), Box Elder (Negundo aceroides), Scrub Oak (Quercus undulata), Wild Plum (Prunus americana), Wild Cherry (P. demissa), Choke Cherry (P. virginiana), Hawthorn, two species (Crataegus rivularis and C. douglasii), Service Berry (Amelanchier alnifalia), Silver Berry (Elæagnus argentea), Buffalo Berry (Shepherdia argentea), Black Birch (Betula occidentalis), Black Alder (Alnus incana viresceus), Sage Brush (Artemisia tridentata).

The last species is sometimes so large that “a man on horseback may ride erect underneath the branches."

We notice a curious slip by which Actinella glabra Nutt. is listed among the new species, although it was published as a new species fiftyfive years ago in the Transactions of the American Philosophical Society, and a year or so later appeared under Nuttall's name in Torrey and Grays Flora of North America, II, p. 382.-CHARLES E. BESSEY.

The Lichens of Chicago.-Bulletin No. 1, of the Geological and Natural History Survey of the Chicago Academy of Sciences is devoted to an enumeration of the lichens of Chicago and vicinity, by Mr. W. W. Catkins. One hundred and twenty-five species are enumerated and very briefly characterized. The paper is supplemented by a useful but incomplete Bibliography of North American Lichenology.-CHARLES E. BESSEY.

Eastwood's Plants of Southeastern Utah.—In the Proceedings of the California Academy of Sciences (2d series, vol. VI) Miss Alice Eastwood enumerates 162 species collected in 1895 in the valley and on the plateaus of the San Juan River in southeastern Utah, a desert region with curious oases about springs and along cañong. Several new species are enumerated, three of which are figured in the plates which accompany the report.-CHARLES E. BESSEY.

Correction.-On page 748, by a slip of the pen the “popple” of the Colorado Mountains is given as Populus balsamifera candicans ; it should be P. tremuloides.-CHARLES E. BESSEY.

Botanical News.-A suggestive pamphlet on "The Pathology of Plants” by B. T. Galloway comes from the Office of Experiment Stations of the United States Department of Agriculture. Its object is to point out certain lines of work in plant pathology that might be undertaken by botanists in the state experiment stations. From the · Division of Agrostology, (U. S. Dept. Agriculture) we have “Fodder and Forage Plants, exclusive of the Grasses” a pamphlet of fifty-eight pages, by Jared G. Smith. It is a descriptive, illustrated list of these plants, written in semi-popular language. It will be of value not only to stock growers, but to scientific botanists as well— Professor W.J. Beal has recently published a Report of the Botanical Department of the Michigan Agricultural College from which we learn that there are in the herbarium 54,243 specimens, and that the botanic garden, begun in 1877 now contains 1335 species.—The Contributions from the U. S. National Herbarium (Vol. III, No. 9) issued August 5, 1896 contains the following papers: The Flora of Southwestern Kansas, a report on à collection of plants made by C. H. Thompson in 1893, by A. S. Hitchcock; Crepis accidentalis and its allies, by F. V. Coville; Plants from the Big-Horn Mountains of Wyoming, by J. N. Rose; Leibergia, a new genus of Umbelliferæ from the Columbia River Region, by J. M. Coulter and J. N. Rose; Roseanthus, a new genus of Cucurbitacea from Acapulco, Mexico, by Alfred Cogniaux.

ZOOLOGY.

Notes on Turbellaria.-1. ON THE OCCURENCE OF BIPALIUM KEWENSE (MOSELEY) IN THE UNITED STATES.

Since the appearance of Moseley's' paper in 1878 the species bas been recorded from other parts of Great Britain and Ireland, and from Berlin and Frankfurt, A. M. on the continent. It has also been found at the Cape of Good Hope in Africa, in the colonies of Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria in Australia, at Auckland in New Zea

* Moseley, H. N. Description of a New Species of Land-Planarian from the Hothouses at Kew Garden. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist., Ser. 5. Vol. I, pp. 237-239

« AnteriorContinuar »