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First I should say that I enjoy every aspect of building this site. I enjoy the time spent in wild, remote places and in roadside ditches looking for and at the various species that share our universe. I enjoy doing the research and learning what mankind has discovered about the natural world. Most of the time I even enjoy the often head banging work of developing the application that generates the pages for this site. What really drives me in this endeavor is the fact that wild places, and even the fence rows, meadows, small woodlands and other places where species other than man can exist are disappearing. In their place we find roads, mines, industrial sites, high tech farming, tree plantations, waste dumps, shopping malls, residential developments and golf courses. You would need to travel to the moon to find places with less biological diversity than these places. Indeed the first step in development is to destroy every natural feature living or dead and create a barren place to be molded to man's desire. Even the green spaces, gardens and lawns we create are too often populated entirely with plants that are not native to the area and require great effort, dangerous pesticides, herbicides, fungicides and lots of water to maintain. If one person, who was going to "clean up" a wooded area, stream bank or fence row or convert a meadow into a lawn, recognizes some wild flower there due to this site and decides to leave it alone then this effort will have been worthwhile.
I can't but feel that one who knows the names, lore and uses of the things found in nature is more likely to care for the remaining wild places. A forest trail becomes a richer, more complex and beautiful place as ones understanding of it increases. One steps with more care in the wild when the inhabitants of the forest are known just as one feels and behaves differently among friends as opposed to strangers.
This site began as an extension of a database I was building to sort out about ten years of sometimes sporadic field notes and drawings, mostly of plants, and the research I had done to try and identify what I had seen. The uninitiated might think that in ten years I would have cataloged all the plants in this part of the country. Far from it. I have not yet entered all the plants I had Identified when I started the site and even when I do it will be only a fraction of the plants that are to be found here. The list, I'm happy to report, will never be complete. The site does now include at least a species or two from many of the major families of wildflowers and often a brief description of similar species found in this area.
Most entries have at least one color photograph, some have several. Originally the site was designed to be useable to those with slow dial up connections to the internet so the images were small and highly compressed. Now that the vast majority of people have access to fast connections I am in the process of replacing the old images with larger, less compressed and hopefully better quality images
Since I have included such information as medical uses of many plants it is important to point out that I have no education whatsoever in any field much less medicine or botany and the information on this site should under no circumstances are to be considered as a guide to treat any malady or any other medical use. All information is presented without any claim of accuracy or validity and certainly not with any notion of correct spelling, usage or grammar.
I wish to thank my wife Diane and my children Nicholai and Hypatia for their patience in allowing me to ignore their needs for countless hours while I worked on this site. A special thanks to Paul Rebmann who has accompanied me on many trips to the wild and contributed photographs to this site and has his own site with images and info about wildlife in Florida - Wild Florida Photo. Also to Allen Searson who has contributed to the site and aided me in identifying many plants, to Darel Hess for his wonderful photos and to James Henderson for his photos of some rather rare plants. A thanks also to those that have provided encouragement and support and paused with me along a trail or
©1999-2001 Daniel Reed