Master's Theses (1970 - 2004) - The Longwood Graduate Program in Public Horticulture

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Master’s theses in the Longwood Graduate Program submitted between 2005 and 2009 are available online through Dissertations & Theses @ University of Delaware. Check DELCAT to locate print or microform copies of master's theses that are not available online.

More information is available at Dissertations & Theses.


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 20 of 90
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    Productivity Improvement Programs in Public Horticultural Institutions
    (University of Delaware, 1986-06) Townsend, Joseph
    With few exceptions botanic gardens and arboreta are nonprofit organizations. They rely on endowments, private giving, entrance receipts., grants, and tax revenues for their operating budgets. Recent economic conditions have threatened this base of support. Public horticultural institutions are often faced with the choice of reducing services; or improving productivity to make ends meet. Productivity improvement is by far the more attractive alternative. Some gardens have taken this course. Their record for success is dismal. This thesis supports the premise that botanic gardens and arboreta have a poor record on productivity improvement because they do not have an accurate model of how their organizations function and they do not have a clear concept of the "ins and outs" of productivity. Chapter I develops the historical background of contemporary thought on how organizations function and what makes some productive. Chapter II develops an organizational model to describe botanic gardens and arboreta. Chapter III describes productivity improvement programs in four institutions. Chapter IV analyzes the four case studies using the model described in Chapter III. Finally, Chapter V points out a new direction for productivity improvement in public horticultural institutions. Botanic gardens and arboreta are not to be blamed for their poor record of productivity improvement. Most nonprofits have difficulty applying programs and models developed for profit-making organizations to the nonprofit realm. This study attempts to bridge the gap between modern organizational research and the little known field of botanic garden management.
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    Influence of Temperature on Growth and Flowering of Four Meconopsis Genotypes
    (University of Delaware, 2002) Still, Shannon
    Meconopsis betonicifolia Franch. And M. grandis Prain are members of the Papaveraceae L. native to the Himalayan mountains. These species and the hybrids derived from them are especially prized as ornamentals for their intense blue flowers and gardenesque habit. Longwood Gardens, a horticultural display garden in eastern Pennsylvania, USA, has identified these plants as having good conservatory display qualities. However, empirical observations indicate these species are intolerant of the hot summers that occur in this geographic reason. The experiments performed in this study were designed to identify how temperature would affect plant characteristics critical to display for blue flowered Meconopsis as well as the red flowering M. punicea Maxim. Meconopsis betonicifolia, M. 'Lingholm' , a variety from the M. George Sherriff Group, and M. punicea plants were forced in the greenhouse at minimum night/day temperatures of 7.2°C /10°C, 12.8°C /15.6°C, and 18.3°C /12.1°C between December 2000 and May 2001. All plants grown in the 7.2°C /10°C and 12.8°C /15.6°C temperatures had larger canopy widths when starting to flower than those plants in 18.3°C /21.1°C environment. Plants grown in the two cooler temperature ranges also had taller flower stems, at 64.27cm and 54.44cm, for the coolest and medium environment, respectively, compared to the warmest environment at 46.27cm. The stem diameter was greatest on plants in the warmest environment at .691cm compared to the intermediate and warm temperatures at .526cm and .438cm for the medium and warmest environment, respectively. Plant dry weight was also inversely related to temperature. Plants grown at 7.2°C /10°C, at 41.8g, were 33% heavier than those grown at 12.8°C /15.6°C, at 31.4g, and 100% heavier than the plants in the 18.3°C /21.1°C, at 20.6g, at harvesting. This study demonstrated forcing temperature regulated net photosynthesis and dry weight gain of Meconopsis species and hybrids. It also showed that display quality plants with tall, strong flower stems and good foliage could be grown when temperatures were monitored and maintained at 7.2°C /10°C or 12.8°C /15.6°C and proper genotypes were selected.
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    An Evaluative Study of the Delaware Master Gardener Volunteer Program
    (University of Delaware, 2001) Simmer, Laurie Smith
    The concept of a Master Gardener Program originated in Washington State in 1972; today Cooperative Extension supports sister programs in nearly every state. Since the inception of Delaware's Master Gardener Program in the spring of 1986, it has not been evaluated. Master Gardener Programs exist in each of the three counties of Delaware. One of the program's aims is to help fellow Delawareans obtain practical and valuable gardening information through Delaware Cooperative Extension. The primary purpose of this research was to identify the beneficiaries of Delaware's Master Gardener Program and the extent to which the provided information was useful, accurate, and timely. The primary source of information collected for this research endeavor was compiled from the data gathered by the distribution of survey instruments to two specific populations of Delaware Gardeners. Delaware's Gardening Public completed self-administered surveys at Delaware garden centers and nurseries, which allowed the researcher to gather their input. A second population, known users of programs and services provided by trained Delaware Master Gardener Volunteers, completed survey instruments sent to their residences. The combination of responses yielded demographic information as well as data regarding gardeners' use of specific sources of information and gardening characteristics useful to complete this program evaluation. Gathered data are intended to strengthen programming and extend outreach through the Delaware Master Gardener Volunteer Program to Delaware's Gardening Public.
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    An Approach to Teaching Children about the Aesthetics of Plants and Gardens
    (University of Delaware, 1976-06) Scheid, David
    The point of this thesis is to draw together some ideas which may serve as guidelines for those who are interested in a program for the education of children in gardens. An education program should not consist only of the courses of plant study and practical gardening, but also the encouragement of sensitivity to beauty, or aesthetics. Any program must consider not only the qualifications of the teacher to teach aesthetics and the ability of the student to understand aesthetics, but the methods used to present the material. The teacher's role is one of training and guiding the child's interest in the proper direction. The teacher needs to inform himself by knowing how children learn, the pupil's age and maturation level, their motivation, their known and perceived needs, the physical conditions and time factor, and the child's interest. The teacher must be conversant in the topic and utilize the child's interest as a point of beginning, not as the exclusive direction. The student's role should be an active one. In teaching aesthetics the interest of the child can be maintained if the instructor moves quickly into the various phases of each topic, touching only on the most important points and allowing the pupils to build on them. In order to learn aesthetics it is necessary for the child to understand the elements of color, texture, and form and their interrelationships. This involves the handling of more than one variable, the forming of hypotheses and the evolution of logical conclusions. In the intellectual development of a child this ability generally becomes evident in the eleven to fifteen year age group. Therefore aesthetics of plants and gardens are best taught to children in grades four to six. When teaching aesthetics of plants and gardens, it is important for the student to understand the concepts of diversity, interrelationships, adaptation and change. These concepts can be further interpreted through the study of the aesthetic elements of color, texture, and form. When teaching these elements, the instructor is encouraged to use the methods and materials the teacher feels confident with and teaching in an interesting and informative manner, it is hoped that both the teacher and the pupil will realize that beauty is in the study, the acquiring of perception, the self satisfaction, the creating process.
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    Operations Manual for Plant Record Tracking/Mapping System
    (University of Delaware, 1988-05) Murbach, David
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    Development of an Applied Microcomputer Plant Record Tracking/Mapping System
    (University of Delaware, 1988-05) Murbach, David
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    Directory of Computer Use in Plant Record-Keeping
    (University of Delaware, 1988-05) Murbach, David
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    The Impacts of Corporate Sponsorship on Private, Nonprofit Gardens and Museums
    (University of Delaware, 1999) Shackelford, Stacy Cost
    Corporate sponsorship is becoming more widespread as a fund raising effort by private, non-profit gardens and museums. , n this study, the researcher used five Impact Areas to measure how corporate sponsorship influenced the four case study sites. They were policies, finances, programs, staffing, and organizational philosophy. The researcher analyzed results after interviewing and collecting data. Corporate sponsorships did not impact policies; however, as experience is gained with corporate sponsorships, policies directly governing these relationships are expected to evolve. Sponsorships favorably impacted the financial state of the organizations because they are another fund raising avenue. The case study sites relied upon sponsorships to pay for large events and programs. Without this source of funding, programs would be smaller in scale and some programs would be cut from schedules. Staffing at these organizations changed because of corporate sponsorships to include personnel experienced with sales and marketing. Corporate sponsorships impacted the case study sites' organizational philosophy by causing it to focus externally on partnerships with other corporations and non-profit organizations.
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    The Role of Horticulture in Theme Parks
    (University of Delaware, 1996-05) Scheu, Diane
    Horticulture in theme parks has taken many roles since the earliest days of the amusement industry. These roles have included pleasure gardens in which other attractions were set, exhibits at world's fairs and incidental attractions used to fill in spaces between attractions. In the modern-day theme park, horticulture has taken on new roles. The horticulture is designed to entertain through themeing and public horticulture programs are designed to entertain through education. Theme park horticulturists are now beginning to understand the importance of the horticulture and the design of the gardens in creating moods complementary to the themed attraction it surrounds. Numerous theme parks have created gardens that have become attractions worthy of their own merit. Theme parks have also been exploring the opportunities available in educational programming in recent years; however, widespread program development to promote the horticulture as its own attraction has advanced very slowly. This thesis addresses the evolution of horticulture in theme parks, identifies current horticultural practices of case study theme parks. The role of public horticulture in theme parks will be presented along with recommendations to demonstrate to theme parks how they may promote their own programs.
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    Henry Francis du Pont and the Early Development of Winterthur Gardens
    (University of Delaware, 1984-06) Libby, Valencia
    In 1956, the Garden Club of America awarded Henry Francis du Pont (1880-1969) their Medal of Honor with the following dedication, "In the estimation of fellow horticulturists Mr. du Pont is granted to be one of the best, even the best gardener this country has ever produced" [emphasis mine]. H. F. du Pont was passionately involved with horticulture for the majority of his long life. Today the magnificent gardens and landscape of his former estate, "Winterthur," north of Wilmington, Delaware, attest to his horticultural and aesthetic genius. Yet little is known about H. F. du Pont's development as a horticulturist and garden designer, particularly during the first half of his lifetime, 1880 to 1927. Form the correspondence, journals, class notes, business records, and family documents of H. F. du Pont as well as personal interviews emerge the details of his extraordinary horticultural education. Raised in the Brandywine Valley amidst a large family with keen interests in horticulture, he was drawn to gardening and the study of nature. He helped with the workmen's chores on the estate and gained practical experience in husbandry and horticulture. At the age of thirteen he was sent to boarding school in Groton, Massachusetts, where he further enjoyed horticulture as a pastime. But it was during his college career at Harvard University that H. F. du Pont began seriously to pursue a formal education in horticulture. He studied horticultural practices, landscape design, and plants at Harvard' s Bussey Institution, one of America' s first colleges of practical agriculture and horticulture. Receiving his Bachelors degree from Harvard in 1903, H. F. du Pont continued to develop his horticultural knowledge by visiting the great gardens, nurseries, and exhibitions of the day in Europe and America; by reading extensively; by cultivating a friendship with the talented landscape architect Marian Cruger Coffin; and by establishing relations with amateur and professional plantsmen such as Charles Sprague Sargent. Simultaneously, he carried out a series of horticultural experiments at Winterthur, testing both plants and design ideas. Further inspired by the English school of gardening, his efforts transformed the grounds of the family estate into a very personal vision of horticultural beauty and order. Upon his inheritance of the Winterthur estate in 1927 following his father's death, H. F. du Pont was ready to apply all that he had learned over the previous forty-seven years to the creation of Winterthur Gardens.
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    Conservation, as Part of a Garden's Mission, Promotes Organizational Practices that Promote Biodiversity
    (University of Delaware, 2005) Hedean, Sarah
    Gardens have been a significant instrument in scientific and cultural development of the assessment and study of plant resources. Public gardens have played a major role in the exploration of plant life, in the acclimatization and introduction of species, in the education of plant life and in plant conservation. Throughout the world, public gardens host more than 200 million people each year, helping their visitors appreciate, enjoy and respect the plant life that sustains our planet. In an age of rapid loss of plant species and wild habitats, gardens have become vital centers of education, research, horticulture and conservation. Gardens have developed roles and responsibilities that are becoming increasingly important for protecting plant biodiversity. ☐ This research sought to determine if having conservation as part of the garden’s mission promotes organizational practice’s that conserve biodiversity. Surveys to public gardens in the United States and four case study site visits offered perceptions and opinions related to the contribution of organizational practices to biological diversity conservation. ☐ The three identified areas of organizational practices include: saving biodiversity, studying biodiversity and using biodiversity sustainably. Saving biodiversity is taking steps to protect genes, species, habitats, and ecosystems through preventing, managing and protecting the degradation of natural ecosystems. Organizational practices that contribute to saving biodiversity include: native plant collections, ex situ conservation, networking and partnerships. Studying biodiversity is undertaking and/or promoting scientific research programs, public understanding and awareness. Organizational practices that contribute to studying biodiversity include research, public programs, interpretation and display. Using biodiversity sustainably is utilizing organizational practices that maintaining biodiversity including horticultural practices and low impact resource use. ☐ Using the Pearson correlation coefficient to measure the relationship between a conservation mission statement and twenty-seven organizational practices investigated in this study, nineteen are found to have a significant correlation at the 0.01 level. The nineteen organizational practices are: native plant collections, propagation, monitoring, plant exploration, seed bank, rescue station, regional partnerships, national partnerships, international partnerships, educational programs, public awareness, display, interpretation, research, invasive species control, recycling, land management, water management, and wildlife management. This means that when conservation is part of a garden’s mission statement, those practices are likely to be part of the garden’s conservation strategy.
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    Survey of Membership of the American Association of Public Gardens and Arboreta
    (University of Delaware, 1972-06) Ewert, Thomas
    This study was undertaken as a means of evaluating the American Association of Botanical Gardens and Arboreta. With a belief that a degree of professionalism is desirable in any occupational field, it was hoped to determine whether or not the A.A.B.G.A. was serving the role of a professional society in the field of public horticulture. A questionnaire was sent to the membership, and from their answers a membership profile was established. Questions which asked for membership opinion were included as a means of determining membership satisfaction with the organization .
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    Planned Giving Program Management in Public Gardens
    (University of Delaware, 2005) Elzer-Peters, Katherine
    All public gardens in the United States must secure operating revenue. Sources of revenue include government funding, corporate grants and private funding. Private funding includes in-kind donations, cash, and deferred giving (planned giving). The goal of this research was to examine how gardens manage planned giving programs and how they use planned gifts to their advantage before and after the gifts mature. To date, few other research studies have examined planned giving program management. The researcher mailed post card surveys to member organizations of the American Association of Botanical Gardens and Arboreta to discover general trends in planned giving program management in public gardens. Telephone interviews with ten of the post card respondents provided more in-depth information and real world examples. The research showed that public gardens with a staff member working at least part-time, but not necessarily full-time, to recruit planned gifts were more likely to receive income from planned gifts than gardens without a staff member working at least part-time on recruiting planned gifts. In 2002, 56% of responding gardens receive income from planned gifts. The budget size of a garden influences planned giving program management activities. Gardens with large operating budgets have more active programs. Small gardens can successfully recruit planned gifts. Gardens are not using immature planned gifts to their advantage before the gifts mature.
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    The History and Development of New Guinea Impatiens
    (University of Delaware, 1990-08) Benjamin, Joan
    New Guinea Impatiens is an important ornamental crop in the United States and Europe. In the United States they are quickly approaching the total market value of Geraniums and major growers feel their popularity has not peaked (Konjoian 1990; Drewlow, interview, 8 May 1990). The history of these plants provides insight into ornamental plant development. Future development efforts may benefit from understanding the procedures that made New Guinea Impatiens a success. New Guinea Impatiens were first introduced in Europe in 1886 and instantly became popular. By the early 1900s they had virtually disappeared from cultivation because of Begonia mite infestations (Hooker 1909). Plant explorers collected and distributed New Guinea Impatiens from 1886 until 1969 but the plant did not regain its lost status. In 1970 a plant exploration trip co-sponsored by Longwood Gardens and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) rediscovered New Guinea Impatiens. Their cooperative venture became a turning point in the plants' development. The two organizations were interested in the possible display uses of the plant and in discovering and distributing information about its breeding and culture. Universities and commercial growers were able to work with the plants because of the commitment of Longwood and USDA to share information. Plant collectors, researchers, and breeders were involved in the advancement of New Guinea Impatiens in varying degrees. Only a handful of individuals were dedicated enough to promote and develop the plants. New Guinea Impatiens became a success after nearly one hundred years of obscurity because of the cooperation between not-for-profit and commercial organizations, and the persistence and commitment of a few individuals.
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    Zoo Horticulture
    (University of Delaware, 1986) Hohn, Timothy
    Today's zoos are undergoing a renaissance in their exhibition, education, conservation, and research programs. The inspiration for this renaissance is the destruction of the Earth's dwindling natural habitats at the hands of an uninformed human populace. Zoo horticulture, and the resulting plant collections, contribute to beautiful zoo surroundings, naturalistic exhibits having ecological integrity and encouraging natural animal behaviors resulting in a high level of visitor education and enjoyment. Naturalistic exhibits, commonly representing particular habitats from specific geographic locations, are dependent upon the creative use of plants for their integrity.
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    Charles County Community College: An Ecological Approach to the Landscape Development of a Campus Arboretum
    (University of Delaware, 1973-05) Buckler, James
    This study was initiated to provide information to be used in making decisions related to the development of a new type of campus arboretum a t Charles County Community College, La Plata, Maryland. This arboretum would be based on an ecological approach to the selection of native plant material t o be used i n the landscape development of the Campus. After analyzing the site and its conditions, it was found that of the 173 acres, approximately 50% of the land had slopes greater than 10% and was therefore unsuited to conventional development. Of the remaining 50% of the land, approximately 25% is in a flood plain. Therefore, only 25% of the land is suited to development without major changes in topography or drainage patterns. Three line-transect surveys were conducted on June 20, 1972, to determine the indigenous flora associated with the six major soil types of Aura, Beltsville , Bibb, Croom, Iuka, and Sassafras. A total of 39 native genera, 48 native species, and 1 introduced genus were found indigenous to the Campus. In the lists of recommended plants for these soil types, a total of 95 genera and 166 species were included for use in the landscape development of the Campus to provide an arboretum of native plants. These plants were selected on the basis of those native plants from within a 250 mile radius of the College which were of ornamental value for use in landscaping in the various soil types. The lists are based on those native plants indigenous to the site on the soil types and those native plants recommended by Donald Wyman in his books entitled Trees for American Gardens, Shrubs and Vines for American Gardens, and Ground Cover Plants which have habitats similar to the existing site conditions of the soil types involved. These lists contain information on the habit, height, genus species, common name, flower color and month(s) of interest, fruit color or type and month(s) of interest, autumn color, and landscape comments on the plant involved. From these lists , the College or landscape architect can select the native plants which can be used in the various soil types which exist on the Campus. In addition, setting up the Arboretum as an independent organization has a number of advantages as elaborated in this thesis. Of advantage will be an herbarium, records system, library, and labeling system appropriate to the development of an arboretum of native plants.
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    Selection of Geographic Information System (GIS) Software for the Mapping of Living Plant Collections
    (University of Delaware, 2005) Dawson, Shelley
    Botanical gardens, as stewards of living plant collections, are given the duty of managing the data concerning their collection. These data are both historical and geographical. Since the 1950s, people have been working to manage their geographic data using a system of computer modeling. This system has evolved into what is now commonly known as a Geographic Information System (GIs). This study looks at the database and mapping software system combinations currently in use at botanical institutions. A compiled list of forty-nine named institutions shows the reader what combinations are in current use. This study is written for institutions that already have a computerized database in place, and are seeking information on choosing a computerized mapping system. A discussion of the history of Computer Aided Drafting (CAD), Geographic Information System (GIS) and computer mapping in general, educates and prepares the reader to become familiar with particular software packages. A literature and history review provides the reader with resources for more information on database systems if they do not currently have one implemented in their institution. Plant mapping professionals rank a series of 20 questions on the importance of computerized mapping software to the institutional needs. The three most commonly utilized mapping software packages were then evaluated on a point-by- point basis to determine which software options most completely fulfills the garden users' stated desires. One software choice was found to be the most flexible for the garden users' stated desires.
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    The Historic Landscape at Gibraltar - A Proposal for Its Preservation
    (University of Delaware, 1997) Gestram, Iris
    Gibraltar is an historically significant house and early twentieth-century estate garden within the city of Wilmington, Delaware. Its landscape merits preservation based on its association with Hugh Rodney Sharp, one of Delaware's preeminent preservationists and philanthropists; Marian Cruger Coffin, who was among the first and most accomplished women landscape architects in the United States; and the Brinckle family, important landowners in nineteenth-century greater Wilmington.* By definition, Gibraltar is a designed historic landscape, embodying distinctive characteristics of the American Country Place Era, the period of its greatest significance. In addition to its historic importance, the property forms an essential segment of a contemporary stretch of "greenspace" along Route 52, at the north entrance to the city of Wilmington. Landscape preservation involves four major steps: historical research and documentation, analysis of the property's existing conditions, selection and planning of appropriate treatment methods, and treatment of the landscape. This proposal for the preservation of Gibraltar's landscape was developed in accordance with these four steps, documenting Gibraltar's evolution from the early 1800s until the recent past, evaluating its historic significance, recording existing conditions, and making recommendations for the treatment of the property. Based on information gathered from historic documents, oral history, on-site work, and a variety of published sources, the author recommends the preservation of Gibraltar's landscape as a 1920s historic estate garden reflecting the style of the American Country Place Era. In addition, Gibraltar should be saved as a memorial to its creator and owner, Hugh Rodney Sharp, and as a piece of art, designed by professional landscape architect Marian Cruger Coffin. The preservation work should be carried out in harmony with the design intent of Coffin and Sharp, taking into account contemporary needs of users and visitors and the financial viability of the project.
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    Garden Design for Children
    (University of Delaware, 1988-12) Eberbach, Catherine
    This thesis develops recommendations for the design of children's gardens which are sensitive to the preferences, perceptions, interests, and activities of middle childhood, Children's gardens are not a new phenomenon. For over the past century, public gardens, schools, and private industries established extensive youth gardens, gardening programs, and resource manuals. Believed to teach important cultural values, these gardens typically followed a specific design which included rows of small, rectangular plots linked together by pathways and community areas. Although well informed about how to garden with children, little is known about children's perceptions and use of gardens. Such information would be invaluable when designing gardens for children. To facilitate this understanding, middle childhood development, playground, and phenomenal landscape studies are reviewed, with a focus on child/nature relations. These studies disclose principles relevant to planning children's environments, and ultimately, children's gardens. More specifically, a study of children's artwork reveals how some elementary school students perceive gardens, suggesting that children have aesthetic, color, and landscape element preferences. Overall, youngsters prefer ornamental and colorful gardens with elements which stimulate activity and participation. The Children's Garden at Longwood Gardens, Kennett Square, Pennsylvania incorporates the observations and principles gleaned from this research. The layout of this garden is explained, followed by design recommendations for gardens created for children's use and pleasure.
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    A Horticultural Monograph of the Genus Asarum, Sensu lato, in Japan
    (University of Delaware, 1983-06) Yinger, Barry