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May 01, 2010 (Vol. 30, No. 9)

The Gymnosperm Database

  • Well-organized design
  • Some pages are sparse in information

Who knew that the trees were at war? (At least, that’s the first image that came to mind when I read that the Gymnosperm Database is “the web’s premier source of information on conifers and their ‘allies.’” It was an entertaining thought…) In all seriousness, though, the Gymnosperm Database is a wonderful botany website, and it is strongly infused with the candor of its creator, Christopher J. Earle. He is so candid, in fact, that he makes a point to tell readers, in detail, why the Gymnosperm Database is not a “real” database, and he also confesses that some of the species pages are “pretty skimpy.” Besides earning points for honesty, Dr. Earle deserves a lot of credit for creating a beautifully organized site that contains quite a number of pages that are anything but skimpy. There is also a helpful list of links to other plant websites.

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