Plant Atlas Project of Arizona-PAPAZ

Plant Atlas Project of Arizona

PAPAZ began in 2008 as collaboration between the Arizona Native Plant Society, Grand Canyon Trust, Desert Botanical Garden, U.S. Forest Service, Northern Arizona University, and MNA. Arizona is incredibly diverse with its numerous landforms, varying elevations, temperature gradients, and rainfall patterns. These components create unique niches for plants, and many of these areas have not been documented. The goal of PAPAZ is to document the floristic diversity of Arizona by collecting plant specimens and providing more accurate and detailed geographic information. A majority of the contributions made to this project are accomplished by volunteers, also known as Budding Botanists, who take part in annual training to learn skills in plant identification, collecting, documenting, and processing. Over 125 volunteers have participated so far, assisting with every aspect of the project, from field collecting and conducting data entry, to processing plants at various herbaria. Volunteers at MNA have mounted over 1,000 plant specimens from PAPAZ. The herbarium processing occurs in the newly restored Powell Building’s Botany wing, located on the Museum’s Harold S. Colton Research Campus.