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Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology

Lynn Clark

Visit my homepage at:
http://www.eeob.iastate.edu/clark.html

Visit the Bamboo Biodiversity site at:
http://www.eeob.iastate.edu/research/bamboo/

My research interests focus primarily on the systematics and morphology of grasses, in particular the woody bamboos. In both the Asian and American tropics, the woody bamboos are one of the most visible and characteristic components of the flora, but an understanding of their morphology, ecology, and evolutionary relationships has grown slowly because of their unusual flowering cycles and the difficulties in obtaining adequate material for study. During the last few years, I have been studying the neotropical genus Chusquea, the many species of which inhabit the misty, montane forests of Central and South America; from my field work in these regions has grown an interest in the floristics and biogeography of tropical montane vegetation. I am continuing my research on Chusquea in the Andes and Brazil, gathering basic systematic data in order to construct a hypothesis of evolution within the genus that can subsequently be used in answering broader questions relating to bamboo evolution and biogeography. A project to elucidate the phylogeny of the bamboos using cladistic analysis of both molecular and morphological data is underway. A preliminary web site with more information is available at: http://www.eeob.iastate.edu/research/bamboo/   Several floristic treatments of bamboos are also in preparation. I am also participating in the Grass Phylogeny Working Group, whose goal is to provide a robust phylogeny for the grasses and base a new subfamiliae classification on the phylogeny.