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Botany student proves 'New England Banksia' a distinct species
Date:8/28/2012

The New England Banksia is largely restricted to the eastern edge of the New England Tableland, and is common in places along Waterfall Way. Ms Stimpson's research has raised this flowering plant, until now classified as a variety of the Hairpin Banksia (B. spinulosa), to the taxonomic level of a distinct species. The study was published in the open access journal PhytoKeys.

"I love the Proteaceae the family of flowering plants that includes the Banksia and Grevillea genera in Australia and Protea in South Africa," Ms Stimpson said. "Surprisingly, molecular evidence in recent years has shown the family's closest relatives are the Sacred Lotus and the plane trees. Species of Banksia survive in poor soil and still manage to produce marvellous flowers."

Margaret Stimpson wrote the paper in collaboration with Ian Telford, the Curator of the N.C.W. Beadle Herbarium at the University of New England, Professor Jeremy Bruhl, the Director of the herbarium, and Dr Peter Weston, Senior Principal Research Scientist at the National Herbarium of NSW, an international specialist in Proteaceae systematics.

Margaret's first project as an undergraduate student of botany at UNE was on the Proteaceae, and she's been collecting specimens ever since. Now working towards enrolling in a doctoral degree program, she said: "There are still specie
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Contact: Margaret Stimpson
megstimpson@gmail.com
Pensoft Publishers
Source:Eurekalert  

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Botany student proves 'New England Banksia' a distinct species
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