Systematics of agricultural plants I

SYSTEMATICS OF VASCULAR PLANTS IMPORTANT TO AGRICULTURE Project Number: 1275-21000-069-00D Researchers: Kirkbride, J. H.; Wiersema, J. H.; Rossman, A. Y. Start Date: 23-Mar-90 End Date: 22-Mar-95 Performing Institution: AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH SERVICE, BELTSVILLE AGR RES CENTER, BELTSVILLE, MARYLAND 20705

Research Objectives: Develop databases and publish illustrated text to facilitate identification of seeds and fruits to family and faboid legumes to genus. Monograph legume tribes Loteae and Coronilleae with special study of genus Lotus. Determine scientific names for economic species in Rosaceae and Poaceae subfamily Bambusoideae. Meet taxonomic needs of National Plant Germplasm System.

Approach: Modern computer technology combined with traditional systematic methods will be used to achieve objectives. Special use will be made of International Code of Botanical Nomenclature, computerized taxonomic database system (DELTA), in-house computer programs, National Plant Germplasm System, scientific illustrations, morphology, cytology, and voucher herbarium specimens.

Progress: Knowledge of the systematics of agriculturally important plants forms the basis for the development and production of crops for food, forage and fiber. 1) The genus Lotus (Fabaceae), bird’s-foot trefoil, is a legume used as a forage crop and ground cover in pastures and along highways in the United States. A basic understanding is needed of the systematic relationships of species within this genus as well as the relationship of this genus to other legumes. A synopsis of species within the genus Lotus was published with an outline of related genera. This information is used by plant breeders who are searching for new germplasm as well as by those who develop this crop for various purposes. 2) Taxonomic data in the germplasm resources information network (GRIN) was developed to meet the needs of agriculture. Work on the nomenclature of vascular plant provides those using the National Plant Germplasm System with the latest information about vascular plant names. The accurate and consistent use of scientific names provides the basis for communication about vascular plant germplasm by agricultural scientists throughout the world.


  1. KIRKBRIDE, JR, J.H. 1994. Revision of Cucumella (Cucurbitaceae, Cucurbitoideae, Melothrieae, Cucumerinae). Brittonia 46:161-186.
  2. KIRKBRIDE, JR., J.H. 1994. Taxonomic circumscription of the genus Lotus Linnaeus(Fabaceae, Loteae), its tribal position, and its species. Proc., The First International Lotus Symposium 1:11-15.
  3. WIERSEMA, J.H. and HELLQUIST, C.B. 1994. Nomenclatural notes in Nymphaeaceae for the North American Flora. Rhodora 96:170-178.
This entry was posted in Research and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.