Geoff Baylis Lecture: Plant systematics research and its relevance to understanding the origins and evolution of the New Zealand flora

Wednesday 4th of September 2013, 06:00 PM (6 years ago)

Contact: David Lyttle | djl1yttle@gmail.com | (03) 454 5470

12th Annual Geoff Baylis Lecture presented by Dr Peter Heenan, Landcare Research, Lincoln.

The science of Plant Systematics is concerned with naming and classifying plants. Its aim is to produce stable and reliable classifications and to provide knowledge of species' relationships. At times, modern taxonomic research has produced much confusion and some disquiet amongst lay people about seemingly arbitrary changes in plant names.

Dr Peter Heenan is one of this countrys foremost plant taxonomists and has, in recent times and amongst other projects, worked on the flora of the Chatham Islands and the predominantly New Zealand genus Pachycladon, a small group of mainly alpine plants belonging to the Brassica family.

In this lecture Dr Heenan will provide an overview of his recent and current taxonomic research. The scope of this research uses modern and traditional techniques to clarify and define species relationships and as a consequence gives valuable insights into the origin and evolution of the indigenous New Zealand flora.

The Geoff Baylis Lecture is held annually by the Botanical Society of Otago, in conjunction with the Department of Botany. It is named in honour of Dr Geoff Baylis, the first Professor of Botany at the University of Otago. In Castle 1 Lecture Theatre, University of Otago. Drinks and nibbles starting from 5:15 pm in the Castle Concourse.