Plant Systematics, Conservation Biology, and Ethnobotany


Dr. George Yatskievych

posted on
Curator, MBG

Research Interests

• Floristics of the United States, Mexico
• Revision of Steyermark's Flora of Missouri
• Pteridophytes
• Plant Conservation
• Parasitic plants, Orobanchaceae

Web Page: MBG, Flora of Missouri Project

Project: Taxonomy of shrubby St. John’s wort in Missouri, a possible cryptic species complex. George Yatskievych is the director of the Flora of Missouri Project at MBG, overseeing the production and completion of a new three-volume book on all the species of Missouri. In addition, he does research on various fern groups and parasitic angiosperms. The common shrubby St. John’s wort in Missouri is a beautiful, yellow-flowered shrub that has begun to be used more frequently in native plant gardens. Recently, botanists have observed two different morphologies within this species differing in apparent leaf shape and flower size. The current project will seek to understand this dichotomy: are there two cryptic species that have been masquerading under one name; is one of these a different species from some other region that has been misidentified until now by botanists in Missouri; or are the smaller- and larger-flowered plants merely phases within a single species? The student will assist with field work to collect new samples of the shrubby St. John’s wort for analysis and also score morphological characters found on existing herbarium specimens in the complex. If time permits, the student may also become involved with extraction of DNA from representative samples in order to study the population-level genetic variation within the group. This hopefully will lead to a publication in a peer-reviewed journal addressing the questions posed above.

Selected Publications

  • Jessee, L.H., and G. Yatskievych. 2011. A new putative hybrid in Silphium (Asteraceae: Heliantheae). Phytoneuron 2011-62: 1–7.
    Sigel, E. M., M. D. Windham, L. Huiet, G. Yatskievych, and K. M. Pryer. 2011. Species relationships and farina evolution in the cheilanthoid fern genus Argyrochosma (Pteridaceae). Syst. Bot. 36: 554–564.
  • Yatskievych, G. 2006. Steyermark’s Flora of Missouri, Second Edition, Volume 2. Missouri Botanical Garden Press, St. Louis.
  • Mora-Olivo, A., and G. Yatskievych. 2009. Salvinia molesta in Mexico. Amer. Fern J. 99: 56–58.
Dr. George Yatskievych Dr. George Yatskievych
| Categories: Plant Systematics | Tags: Pteridophytes, Fern Taxonomy | Return