[permaculture] archaeobotany mailing list-LINK

Gray, Lisa LGray at museumoflondon.org.uk
Thu Aug 29 10:11:09 EDT 2002

Yes it is a low volume list, but friendly and international. They'd love
your "native" question. They did discuss the correct nomenclature for
stones/pip/pits from soft fruits recently! I've sometimes referred people to
it and vice versa. There is a bigger generally British archaeological list
I'm on which sometimes produces gems but can go off on some strange tangents
which may be what you fancy ;-)- "Britarch". They're currently debating the
effect of wind farms on archaeology. But there are experimental
archaeologists on it who can hold out a hand to permaculturalists wanting
clues form the past to a current problem or idea.

As for native plants. I suppose I'd define a plant as native until we have
evidence that it isn't. I trust up to date floras and would go for advice
from a specialist such as a plant taxonomist if I wanted clarification. We
need to know when plants were introduced. That can sometimes help to date a
feature on an archaeological site. We do get odd finds, for example our
earliest find (as far as I'm aware) of coriander in the UK (where I work)
was on a bronze age site in the South East of England. Though that doesn't
suggest it grew here at that time. Then there are pollen records. So, native
for me would be plants with the longest history in a region. But then
naturalised would probably be the most accurate term to describe any plant.
It would be interesting to know what criteria plant taxonomists use. 

Here are quotes from the flora I have on my lap "...Native - opposite of
alien, a plant that colonised BI by natural means, often long ago..."
"...alien- not native, introduced to a region deliberately or accidentally
by man..."  "...naturalised - an alien plant that has become
self-perpetuating in BI..". Stace, 1991 New Flora of the British Isles, 


> -----Original Message-----
> From: mIEKAL aND [mailto:dtv at mwt.net]
> Sent: 29 August 2002 14:32
> To: permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org
> Subject: Re: [permaculture] archaeobotany mailing list-LINK
> thanks for the link, it looks like a very low volume list, do 
> you think its
> the kind of list environment that is open to questions & 
> discussion from
> folks who are not in the know?
> also, Lisa, Im quite curious how a paleoethnobotantist would 
> define native
> plants?
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