- Bremond L, Alexandre A, Peyron O, Guiot J. 2005. Grass water stress estimated from phytoliths in
West Africa. Journal of Biogeography 32: 311–327.
- Bremond L, Alexandre A, Wooller MJ, et al. 2008. Phytolith indices as proxies of grass subfamilies on East African tropical mountains. Global and Planetary Change 61: 209–224.
- Runge F. 1999. The opal phytolith inventory of soils in
Central Africa– quantities, shapes, classification, and spectra. Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology 107: 23–53.
- Runge F, Runge J. 1997. Opal phytoliths in East African plants and soils. In: Pinilla A, Juan-Tresseras J, Machado MJ eds. The state-of-the-art of phytoliths in soils Madrid: Centro de Ciencias Medioambientales. 71–81.
Sunday, 21 June 2009
Expanding African phytolith potential
An article in the latest Annals of Botany, by John Mercader et al., presents results from a study of phytoliths from modern vegetation in the forests near Lake Nisiala in Mozambique. This is an important baseline and background study, which should contribute to the potential application of phytolith analysis in archaeology and palaeoenvironmental studies in East Africa. Perhaps most importantly they have considered issues of expected relative preservation rates for different morpotypes and the patterning of phytolith assemablges representing different families, even in the absence of true species diagnostics, which should allow for inferring the vegetation type of the Miombo woodlands. Combined with a few other, widely dispersed phytoltih moprhotype studies in parts of Africa, listed below, this represents another important step on the path of developing systematic archaeobotany in sub-Saharan Africa. Other previous background studies, include:
The extensive set of direct dates, on the largest early assemblage of wheat and barley in China, provides important new evidence on the arri...
I have recently been made aware of a small report in Nyame Akuma on Kasala (northeast Sudan), where Italian researchers have restarte...
Last week saw the publication of "Used planet: a global history" in PNAS [ pdf ] in which I teamed up with some land use ...
The recent paper in Science by Riehl et al. on the evidence for Chogah Golan has rightly garnerd wide attention (e.g. Science news ; com...
I am ever the fan of the obscure crop, the "lost crop", or the highly local. I have drawn attention previously to the forgotten ...
Last week, before typhoon tragedies hit the Philippines, I joined about 700 geneticists and plant breeders working on rice for the Rice Gen...