Summer 2019

Complete guide to plants


The world’s first global vegetation community database—which contains complete lists of plant species from all of Earth’s ecosystems—aims to better predict the consequences of worldwide climate change.

“Prior research taught us how and why individual plant species might be found where they are; this enables us to do the same for entire communities,” says Peter Reich, Regents Professor, Distinguished McKnight Professor, and F. B. Hubachek Sr. Chair in Forest Ecology in the U’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences.

Reich, who helped develop the database, says it represents a major step forward in understanding how plant communities vary globally.