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Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica

Main | Family List (MO) | Family List (INBio) | Cutting Edge
Draft Treatments | Guidelines | Checklist | Citing | Editors

The Cutting Edge

Volume X, Number 1, January 2003

News and Notes |Recent Treatments | Leaps and Bounds | Germane Literature | Season's Pick

BIENVENIDO RICARDO. Ricardo Kriebel, biology student at the Universidad Latina in San José, has been visiting INBio for much of the past year, for the sheer love of plants, bringing in interesting collections from various parts of the country. He quickly showed his promise by beginning to master the complicated and diverse Melastomataceae, upgrading identifications (or lack thereof) on much of our unmounted and mounted material. He was a star pupil in the recent taxonomy course offered by INBio [see The Cutting Edge 9(4): 2, Oct. 2002], wherein INBio sage Francisco Morales had the sharp idea of guiding him toward a concentration on Gesneriaceae, in urgent need of a Manual treatment. Ricardo is hard at work on said treatment, having already generated descriptions of all the genera, as well as full accounts of Alloplectus and Gasteranthus. Bienvenido y suerte, Ricardo!

CHICO ON THE MOVE. We neglected to note, in our last issue, that Francisco Morales was at MO from 16-29 August, during which time he studied specimens and literature for his Manual treatments of numerous families (e.g., Araliaceae, Basellaceae, Cunoniaceae, Fagacaeae, and Phytolaccaceae). On the penultimate day of November, Chico finally graduated as a full-fledged dental surgeon (we say “finally,“ but it seemed to go by very quickly). So now he has the capacity to be self-sufficient, no longer at the mercy of the inherent uncertainties of a botanical career. However, knowing Chico, we anticipate no let-up in his botanical output (and expect him to endow a chair at INBio: the “Chico Morales Curator of Acostan Botany“).

EXPEDITION TO CARTAGENA. Manual co-PI, contributor/dentist, and illustrator (respectively) Barry Hammel, Francisco Morales, and Silvia Troyo (see also below) attended the VIII Congreso Latinoamericano de Botánica en Cartagena, Colombia, from 13-18 October. Chico and Silvia presented posters and Barry participated in a workshop on a checklist of neotropical plants spearheaded by Cyperaceae specialist Wayt Thomas (NY). The meetings were a great success in a most wonderful setting; would that those who failed to attend out of fears of hijackings and bombings be so safe at home.

Silvia WENT AND WON. Manual illustrator Silvia Troyo went to the meetings in Cartagena, defying (along with the rest of us) reports of the dangers inherent in travel to Colombia. Her trip was a resounding success, as she not only made numerous important contacts, but also won second place in the “Concurso Latinoamericano de Ilustración Botánica,“ with her illustration of the soon-to-be-published Dicranopygium tatica (Cyclanthaceae). In the early morning hours, before talks began, she was also intellectual co-author (with Hammel) of a series of photos, capturing the brass menagerie of door knockers ( “aldabones“; see examples on the Edge web site) in astonishingly beautiful old-town Cartagena. This is the city that has nothing...that isn't beautiful.

A NEW JEFE AT THE MUSEO. He is Sorbonne-educated Eduardo Faith Jiménez, who succeeds long-time Museo Nacional Director Melania Ortiz Volio. The new cacique has also studied in Costa Rica, Italy and the United States. Our best wishes go out to both the incoming and outgoing directors.

RIP. Manual co-PI Nelson Zamora recently suffered the death of his grandfather who, at the age of 108, may well have been the oldest man (if not person) in Costa Rica. Nelson reports that this life-long cafetalero and hard worker had never, until his final days, spent any time in a hospital.

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