Originally published in 1999, Wildflowers and Other Plants of Iowa Wetlands was the first book to focus on the beauty and diversity of the wetland plants that once covered 1.5 million acres of Iowa. Now this classic of midwestern natural history is back in print with a new format and all-new photographs, just as Iowa’s wetlands are getting the respect and attention they deserve.
In clear and accessible prose, authors Sylvan Runkel and Dean Roosa provide common, scientific, and family names; the Latin or Greek meaning of the scientific names; habitat and blooming times; and a complete description. Plants are presented by habitat (terrestrial or aquatic), then refined by habit (e.g., emergent, floating, or submerged) or taxonomic group (e.g., ferns and allies or trees, shrubs, and vines). Particularly interesting is the information on the many ways in which Native Americans and early pioneers used these plants for everything from pain relief to tonics to soup and the ways that wildlife today use them for food and shelter. Each of the more than 150 species accounts is accompanied by a brilliant full-page color photograph by botanist Thomas Rosburg, who has also updated the nomenclature and descriptions for certain species.
After decades of being considered an enemy of the settler, the farmer, and the citizen, Iowa’s wetlands have come into their own. We are finally caring for these important habitats. Runkel and Roosa’s updated field companion will be a valuable guide to today’s preservation and restoration initiatives.
University of Iowa Press; April 2015
- ISBN 9781609382971
- Read online, or download in secure PDF format
- Title: Wildflowers and Other Plants of Iowa Wetlands, 2nd edition
- Author: Sylvan T. Runkel; Dean M Roosa; Thomas Rosburg (photog.); Arnold van der Valk (other)
Imprint: University of Iowa Press
About The Author
Sylvan Runkel (1906–1995) was the coauthor of five books about midwestern wildflowers, including Wildflowers of the Tallgrass Prairie (Iowa paperback, 2009) and Wildflowers of Iowa Woodlands (Iowa paperback, 2009). A vigorous promoter of conservation for many years, he was honored by the dedication of the Sylvan Runkel State Preserve in 1996. Conservationist
Dean Roosa has served as Iowa’s state ecologist, board member for the Iowa Chapter of the Nature Conservancy and the Natural Areas Association, chair of the Iowa Natural History Association, and president of the Iowa Ornithologists’ Union. He is the coauthor of Wildflowers of the Tallgrass Prairie and The Vascular Plants of Iowa (Iowa, 1994).
Arnold G. van der Valk teaches ecology at Iowa State University and is the editor of the journal Plant Ecology. In 2004, he was named Distinguished Iowa Scientist by the Iowa Academy of Science; four years later, he earned a Merit Award in recognition of his outstanding contribution to wetland science and was elected Fellow of the Society of Wetland Scientists.
A professor of ecology and botany at Drake University, Thomas Rosburg has served as president of the Iowa Academy of Science and as a member of the board of directors for the Iowa Chapter of the Nature Conservancy. Winner of the Sierra Club Environmental Educator Award, the Prairie Advocate Award, the Governor’s Iowa Environmental Excellence Award, and many other distinctions, he is also the photographer for many University of Iowa Press publications, including Trees in Your Pocket (2012) and Wildflowers of the Tallgrass Prairie (2010). He has published over 360 images in a wide range of books, magazines, calendars, and brochures, including National Geographic, Sierra, The Iowan, and the American Journal of Botany.