Vicente Garcia

My interests are in phylogenetics, systematics, evolutionary ecology, and ethnobotany. The elucidation of phylogenetic relationships among taxa is important in our understanding of the evolution and subsequent classification of a group. Phylogenetic signal is often difficult to find in fine scale studies, but I hope to get resolution through the inclusion of morphological data and several quickly evolving markers from all three genomes. Plant interactions with animals, particularly ants, are fascinating to me. By knowing the evolutionary history of both the plant host and ant mutualist, we can begin to test hypotheses of coevolution and possibly hypothesize on the plantís affinities for participating in these interactions. Plant use by people is also interesting especially when the plant is not only medicinally useful, but is also spiritually and culturally important. The interface between plants and people needs to be explored further.