Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The 100 Species Challenge

I find myself with my ancient copy of Newcomb's Wildflower Guide in hand. This book was the required resource for a summer class I took at Bowman's Hill Wildflower Preserve back in the late 1970's, which remains one of my favorite childhood memories of all time. I hope to recreate some of the magic of time spent scouring the woods for various flora, both for myself and my children.

Thank you, thank you, thank you to scsours for the 100 Species Challenge! I'm excited to get started.

Here are the rules, and a link to her original post:

The 100-Species Challenge

1. Participants should include a copy of these rules and a link to this entry in their initial blog post about the challenge. I will make a sidebar list of anyone who notifies me that they are participating in the Challenge.

2. Participants should keep a list of all plant species they can name, either by common or scientific name, that are living within walking distance of the participant's home. The list should be numbered, and should appear in every blog entry about the challenge, or in a sidebar.

3. Participants are encouraged to give detailed information about the plants they can name in the first post in which that plant appears. My format will be as follows: the numbered list, with plants making their first appearance on the list in bold; each plant making its first appearance will then have a photograph taken by me, where possible, a list of information I already knew about the plant, and a list of information I learned subsequent to starting this challenge, and a list of information I'd like to know. (See below for an example.) This format is not obligatory, however, and participants can adapt this portion of the challenge to their needs and desires.

4. Participants are encouraged to make it possible for visitors to their blog to find easily all 100-Species-Challenge blog posts. This can be done either by tagging these posts, by ending every post on the challenge with a link to your previous post on the challenge, or by some method which surpasses my technological ability and creativity.

5. Participants may post pictures of plants they are unable to identify, or are unable to identify with precision. They should not include these plants in the numbered list until they are able to identify it with relative precision. Each participant shall determine the level of precision that is acceptable to her; however, being able to distinguish between plants that have different common names should be a bare minimum.

6. Different varieties of the same species shall not count as different entries (e.g., Celebrity Tomato and Roma Tomato should not be separate entries); however, different species which share a common name be separate if the participant is able to distinguish between them (e.g., camillia japonica and camillia sassanqua if the participant can distinguish the two--"camillia" if not).

7. Participants may take as long as they like to complete the challenge.
You can make it as quick or as detailed a project as you like. I'm planning to blog a minimum of two plants per week, complete with pictures and descriptions as below, which could take me up to a year. But you can do it in whatever level of detail you like.


LB said...

Nice idea! And the separate blog will be quite easy to neatly arrange those species. Are you planning to do one post per species? What a lovely collection you'll have.

I would like to join you, but if you've seen one stick, you've seen them all. Just kidding.

This is a fabulous idea for a homeschooling project. I'm going to think on it a bit and may just join you.

How inspirational you've been!

Fiddler said...

Hey, I owe you a huge debt--you inspired me to get blogging in the first place. Now I have two addictions: books and blogs. But, what the hay, both obsessions make me happy, though they do tend to compete with each other as far as time alloted to them goes.

Anonymous said...

Oooo....this looks like fun. I've bookmarked it to, hopefully, begin after our move in, possibly, February.
Many Blessings,