Plants and People  

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Digitalis, used in heart medication   

This course is recommended for students pursuing employment and/or graduate study in biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, education, medicine, ecology, environmental science, conservation, horticulture, agriculture, plant pathology, forestry, plant taxonomy, ethnobotany, and health food/natural products.


Course catalog description: Integrates the fundamentals of plant growth, reproduction, metabolism, and disease with the utilization of plants by people. Topics include the history of agriculture, modern methods of plant breeding and genetic engineering, and crop growing techniques ranging from the chemically intensive to organic. Also considered are plants as medicines and spiritual aids in traditional societies (ethnobotany), the modern search for drugs from plants (bioprospecting), plants as herbs and spices, and plant conservation. In addition to experiments in lab and field collections of useful plants, the laboratory includes field trips to places where botany is practiced, such as an agricultural research firm, a native plant nursery, an organic farm, and a botanical garden. 

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