[ Publication of the Year ]
Spectacular outcrops of the 40 million year old Sespe Formation are composed of purplish conglomerate rock exposures. Rounded cobbles, lenticular gravels, and water-worn pebbles and sands of the conglomerate, probably owe their shapes to scouring from the Colorado Paleoriver.
Sandstone cliffs have kept the incidence of catastrophic wildfire to a minimum allowing three pinids to survive on ledges and crevices of rock formations in this area. Abies concolor (white fir), Pinus lambertiana (sugar pine), and Pseudotsuga macrocarpa (big cone Douglas fir) constitute the indigenous coniferous populations of the Sespe Sandstone Block of the Topa Topa Mountains.
The Topa Topa Mountains support a population of the Santa Ynez false lupine. A relict fabid population of Thermopsis macrophylla (Fabaceae, Fabales, Rosanae) occurring on the sandstone shelves of Bear Heaven northeast of Santa Paula Peak is of possible interest to students of botany and ecology.
A scientific paper published in 2012 on evo-devo and tool kit function in seed plants is my choice for publication of the year:
Mathews, S. and E. M. Kramer. 2012. The evolution of reproductive structures in seed plants: a re-examination based on insights from developmental genetics. New Phytologist 194(4): 910-923.
Previous Publication of the Year:
Jiao, Y., N. L. Wickett, S. Ayyampalayam, A. S. Chanderbali, L. Landherr, P. E. Ralph, L. P. Tomsho, Y. Hu, H. Liang, P. S. Soltis, D. E. Soltis, S. W. Clifton, S. E. Schlarbaum, S. C. Schuster, H. Ma, J. Leebens-Mack, and C. W. dePamphilis. 2011. Ancestral polyploidy in seed plants and angiosperms. Nature 473(7345): 97-100.
Magallón, S. 2010. Using fossils to break long branches in molecular dating: a comparison of relaxed clocks applied to the origin of angiosperms. Systematic Biology 59(4): 384-399.
Taylor, T. N., E. L. Taylor, and M. Krings. 2009. Paleobotany: The Biology and Evolution of Fossil Plants, Second Edition. Burlington: Elsevier Academic Press, 1230 pages.
Hamès, C., D. Ptchelkine, C. Grimm, E. Thevenon, E. Moyroud, F. Gérard, J.-L. Martiel, R. Benlloch, F. Parcy, and C. W. Müller. 2008. Structural basis for LEAFY floral switch function and similarity with helix-turn-helix proteins. The EMBO Journal 27: 2628-2637.
Theißen, G. and R. Melzer. 2007. Molecular mechanisms underlying origin and diversification of the angiosperm flower. Annals of Botany 100(3): 1-17.
Baum, D. A. and L. C. Hileman. 2006. A developmental genetic model for the origin of the flower. Pp. 3-27 In: C. Ainsworth (ed.), Volume 20, Annual Plant Reviews, Flowering and Its Manipulation. Sheffield: Blackwell, 304 pp.
Soltis, D. E., P. S. Soltis, P. K. Endress, and M. W. Chase. 2005. Phylogeny and Evolution of Angiosperms. Sunderland: Sinauer, 370 pp.
Hochuli, P. A. and S. Feist-Burkhardt. 2004. A boreal early cradle of angiosperms? Angiosperm-like pollen from the Middle Triassic of the Barents Sea (Norway). Journal of Micropalaeontology 23: 97-104.
The image was captured by the author in 1970 using Kodak ASA 25 film as part of a biome project conducted by Allen Cattell, Richard May, John Miller, and Bernie Rios for a Moorpark College biology class taught by the late Clinton Schoenberger. Two of these community college students (Cattell and Miller) went on to earn their doctorate degrees from The University of British Columbia and Oregon State University, respectively.
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