December 1, 2007 (Vol. 27, No. 21)
Strong Points: Good general information
Weak Points: Poor organization
Ethnobotany is a relatively new discipline that has grown tremendously in the past few years. At the University of Hawaii, David Webb hosts this informative, self-referential site covering the subject. Aimed apparently at students in his class, the site is filled with content that will be of interest beyond the field of ethnobotany itself. For example, the Introductory section provides an informative section entitled “Plant Anatomy for Ethnobotanists” and it contains numerous schematic diagrams accompanied by photos to help orient beginners. Beyond the material for beginners, David’s site provides Anatomical Methods (introductory and advanced), Ethnobotanically Important Plants for Hawaiians, and a set of PowerPoint images that he apparently uses in his lectures. While in the context of the class linked to this site, the content works, for an outsider, the unfortunate result is a bit of a mishmash. Ideally this site would work better for broad ethnobotanical education if it were better organized and a bit more focused on its subject. It’s worth a look, nevertheless.