Author(s): BETH ELLIS
Published in Association with the New York Botanical Garden
The Manual of Leaf Architecture is an essential reference for describing, comparing, and classifying the leaves of flowering plants. This manual, illustrated with dozens of line drawings and more than 300 photographs of prepared stained leaves, provides a framework with comparative examples allowing consistent and detailed description of both modern and fossil leaves. This one-of-a-kind resource will be invaluable to a broad range of people who work with plants, from paleobotanists to systematists to tropical ecologists.
The Manual allows for the description and identification of plants independently of their flowers, offering especially useful assistance in the case of fossil leaves (usually found in isolation) and tropical plants, whose flowering cycles can be brief and irregular, and whose fruits and flowers may be difficult to access. It provides long-needed guidelines for characterizing the organization, shape, venation, and margins of the leaves of flowering plants.
Beginning with a set of illustrated definitions of leaf characters, this manual proceeds to define and illustrate the variations on each of these characters. The system presented here is based on a widely tested scheme but has been significantly expanded and refined through the detailed examination of thousands of living and fossil leaves.
"This book is a clear, well illustrated, logically rigorous, and eminently practical distillation of the authors' vast collective experience in devising more powerful and objective methods for the identification of fossil angiosperm leaves. Not only will it be a boon for paleobotanists working on fossil leaves, but it should also stimulate greater appreciation of the utility of leaf characters in reconstruction of the phylogeny and evolution of living angiosperms and field identification of plants in both temperate and tropical regions." James A. Doyle, University of California, Davis