Plant Systematics, Conservation Biology, and Ethnobotany


Aaron Floden, Ph.D.

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Assistant Scientist – Flora of Missouri
Monographic Studies, Science & Conservation Division

Research Interests
• Flora of Missouri
• Flora of the Midwest
• Plant Systematics

Discovering hidden species diversity in the Eastern Trout Lilies. Floden is the Curator of the Flora of Missouri, and his research interests include floristics and taxonomy of plants of the southwestern U.S. The Eastern Trout Lilies, genus Erythronium, are comprised of two groups of species; a white flowered group of three, and a yellow flowered group of 3-5 species. Preliminary molecular and distribution data provides evidence that the species diversity of the yellow-flowered group has been underestimated. In this REU project, the student will add samples from herbarium specimens and more molecular data to investigate the true diversity of the group. It is expected that a few new species will be discovered and published as the result of this project, and the REU student will be a co-author in all publications.

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