Saturday, March 3, 2018

In Bloom

Q: In the study guide you reference the students should be able to identify differences between palmate or pinnate, entire or lobed, hairy or glabrous etc. are these the ONLY ones they need to know or should they be expected to know ALL leaf structures and types. For example please see this document: https://www.cs.rochester.edu/~nelson/wildflowers/glossaries/leaves/index.html#structure

Would the students be expected to know all of these?

A: Students will not be expected to know ALL the possible descriptive terminology that is out there. However, they should know most of the terms on the website you referenced, including alternate, opposite, whorled, and basal / rosette; simple, compound, palmate, pinnateentire, lobed, dissected, toothed (they won't need to distinguish dentate, serrate, and crenate); petiolate, sessile, clasping; elliptical, linearovate, lanceolate, and cordate

For the leaf shapes ovate, lanceolate, and cordate, students should know that the prefix "ob-" means "upside down". So an obcordate leaf looks like an upside-down heart, an obovate leaf looks like an egg with the wider end toward the tip, an oblanceolate leaf looks like a knight's lance with the wider end toward the tip of the leaf.

Other descriptive terms for leaves that students should know include spinose (with sharply pointed spines along the edge, like a holly leaf), glabrous (smooth, without hairs), pubescent (with hairs on the surface), lanate (densely hairy all over, like wool), and rugose (wrinkled).

A complete list of plant descriptive terms that may appear on the test will be posted soon on the WESO website.



Q: You said the 3rd graders should be able to identify the genius and species list from a reference list. Is this list also going to have the common name next to the weed, flower, tree etc. or just the genius and species name?

A: The plant list provided for reference at the competition will be exactly as shown in the revised Event Description, pg. 5–6, posted on the WESO website. This list includes both scientific name (genus and species) and common name, although you may encounter different common names in some field guides. These alternative common names will be acceptable on the test; however, it would be impractical to provide a comprehensive list of alternative common names that will be accepted on the test.