Plants

  • Statewide Biodiversity Survey

    Published05/07/2020

    In 2019, Bell Museum curators embarked on the creation of a baseline biodiversity survey to document plant and animal species on six U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) recreation areas, with a particular focus on locating species of conservation concern.
  • Minnesota Icons: Showy Lady’s Slipper

    Published05/03/2020 , By Heather Cummins

    In 1902, the showy lady’s slipper, also called the pink and white lady’s slipper, became Minnesota’s state flower. Showy lady’s slippers have been protected in Minnesota since 1925, making it illegal to pick, uproot, or unearth these special symbols of our state. Lady’s slipper orchids get their name from the…
  • City Nature Challenge 2020

    Published04/23/2020

    Since 2016, The City Nature Challenge has become an international effort for people to engage with nature and document plants and wildlife in cities across the globe. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, City Nature Challenge 2020 will not be a challenge to get the most entries or number of…
  • Spring into Citizen Science (In Your Backyard)

    Published04/06/2020 , By Holly Menninger

    April is Citizen Science Month! Holly Menninger, director of public engagement and science learning at the Bell, shares her thoughts and tips for how to get involved in citizen science this month. 
  • Exploring Plants and Their Chemicals

    Published03/31/2020

    Ya Yang, our curator of plants, is leading a $1.4 million collaborative project with Sam Brockington at Cambridge University, Hiroshi Maeda at University of Wisconsin, and Stephen Smith at University of Michigan. Support for Yang’s team here at the University is $480,000. We sat down to get some details on…
  • Meet Ficus umbrae

    Published03/27/2020

    George Weiblen, our science director and curator of plants, along with student Zacky Ezedin described a new species—Ficus umbrae—in 2019.
  • Predicting the Future With Plants

    Published01/22/2020 , By Eve Daniels

    What do a rare coconut from the Seychelles and a 100-year-old wildflower from Minnesota have in common? This might sound like the setup to a bad botany joke, but there’s a serious connection between them. Found on only two islands in the world, the endangered double coconut is currently threatened…
  • Meet Tim Whitfeld

    Published08/29/2019

    Tim Whitfeld, who became collections manager for the herbarium on June 1, grew up in a rural area of the United Kingdom. He spent his childhood hiking the footpaths that crisscross the countryside—and fishing. “I think being out in nature was what piqued my interest [in natural history]. I also…
  • Wicked Plants of Minnesota

    Published , By Tim Whitfeld

    Ahead of our Wicked Plants exhibit, opening September 21, we checked in with Tim Whitfeld at the herbarium to find out which plants he considers the wickedest around. The photos are courtesy of the Minnesota Biodiversity Atlas. Here are his top three: