UWEC ·  UWEC Biology 

Joseph R. Rohrer

  • B.S., Biology, Davidson College, NC, 1976
  • M.S., Botany, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, 1979
  • Ph.D., Botany, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 1985
Teaching Spring 2007
  • Plants and Society (Biol 195)
  • Taxonomy of Vascular Plants (Biol 325)

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My research is in the area of plant taxonomy or systematics, the science dedicated to discovering, organizing, and interpreting plant diversity.  For me it involves work in the field, the herbarium, and the laboratory.

  • Field Botany - On a local level I am interested in the native plants and the weeds that make up our regional plant communities.  Two on-going projects are inventories of the bryophytes and vascular plants of Putnam Park and Eau Claire County.  Students can become involved in floristic research by collecting and identifying plants from their hometowns and farms.  Studies in floristic botany can be taken for credit as independent study or directed studies.

  • Plant Taxonomy - On a broader scale my research effort has been focused on preparing taxonomic treatments for the Flora of North America project.  FNA is a multi-authored, 30-volume taxonomic compendium of all the plants naturally occurring in the United States, Canada, and Greenland.  I have submitted a taxonomic treatment of the genus Geum (avens) and currently am completing one for Prunus (plums, cherries, peaches, almonds, and apricots), both in the Rose Family.  My treatments of the moss families Hylocomiaceae and Rhytidiaceae for the Bryophyte Flora of North America are available on the World Wide Web as they await hard-copy publication.

  • Molecular Systematics - Spring Semester 2002 I was awarded a sabbatical leave and worked in a lab at the University of California, Davis, learning methods of molecular systematics.  In the past decade molecular data has revolutionized plant systematics.  Variation in the sequence of nucleotides making up the DNA molecules found in the nucleus, chloroplasts, and mitochondria of plant cells can be used to trace the phylogeny of plant species.  I am analyzing relationships among the 15 species of plums native to North America as inferred from DNA sequences. 

Publication List


Contact information:
Department of Biology
University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire
Eau Claire, WI 54702-4004

Ph: 715-836-5586
Fax: 715-836-5089
email: jrohrer@uwec.edu

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Last modified: 26 January 2007