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Trees of Panama and Costa Rica

Trees of Panama and Costa Rica

Richard Condit
Rolando Pérez
Nefertaris Daguerre
Copyright Date: 2011
Pages: 496
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  • Book Info
    Trees of Panama and Costa Rica
    Book Description:

    This is the first field guide dedicated to the diverse tree species of Panama and Costa Rica. Featuring close to 500 tropical tree species,Trees of Panama and Costa Ricaincludes superb color photos, abundant color distribution maps, and concise descriptions of key characteristics, making this guide readily accessible to botanists, biologists, and casual nature lovers alike.

    The invaluable introductory chapters discuss tree diversity in Central America and the basics of tree identification. Family and species accounts are treated alphabetically and describe family size, number of genera and species, floral characteristics, and relative abundance. Color distribution maps supplement the useful species descriptions, and facing-page photographic plates detail bark, leaf, flower, or fruit of the species featured. Helpful appendices contain a full glossary, a comprehensive guide to leaf forms, and a list of families not covered.

    The only tree guide to cover both Panama and Costa Rica togetherCovers almost 500 species438 high-resolution color photos480 color distribution maps and two general mapsConcise and jargon-free descriptions of key characteristics for every speciesFull glossary and guide to leaf forms included

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-3617-8
    Subjects: Botany & Plant Sciences, Biological Sciences

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. 1-4)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. 5-6)
  3. Foreword
    (pp. 7-8)
    Richard Condit, Rolando Pérez and Nefertaris Daguerrre

    Forests of the tropics are famous for high species diversity. In Panama and Costa Rica, 200 or more species of trees can be found on a walk of a few hundred meters. This shocks visitors from Europe or North America, where a similar walk might uncover at most 10 species of trees. But those same visitors often study the ground layer of plants in a northern forest, and they are very likely to have learned more than 200 species of smaller plants. Many learned these plants by studying field guides such as the classic by Roger Tory Peterson and Margaret...

  4. Part I Introduction
    (pp. 9-24)

    Southern Central America excels in tree species richness. On a world map, Costa Rica and Panama, along with western Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru, have the highest plant diversity (Barthlott et al. 1996). Understanding why begins with understanding the topographic and climatic diversity of the region. The Andes in South America and the central cordillera of Central America are a long, near-continuous spine of mountains, and the variation in elevation from lowland to mountain peaks creates variation in habitat. From the warm lowlands to the cool and windswept mountain tops, communities differ, whether of trees, birds, or butterflies. Particularly important in...

  5. Part II Species Treatments by Family
    (pp. 25-464)

    A large family found throughout the world, with 3200 species worldwide and 1700 in tropical America. Most are herbs or small shrubs, but a very few are trees. Many species in the group are cultivated as ornamentals for their showy flowers and are found in gardens nearly everywhere. Panama has 12 species we designate as trees, but this depends considerably on how “trees” are defined: the generaAphelandraandRuelliahave 50 species between them, only a few of which qualify as treelets. We cover three species here, including two mangroves.

    Acanthaceae are best known for their showy flowers, which...

  6. Part III: Supporting Material

    • Appendix 1. Terminology
      (pp. 467-468)
    • Appendix 2. Major Leaf Traits of Tree Families Known in Panama and Costa Rica
      (pp. 469-474)
    • Appendix 3. Families Not Included
      (pp. 475-478)
  7. Literature Cited
    (pp. 479-480)
  8. Index
    (pp. 481-494)