Well we are almost ready to go. I’m getting excited about all the wonderful culture, delicious new foods to try, and beautiful flowers and plants to learn about. As I discuss this trip with friends and family I often get some questions about the research and I thought I would write down some of the more common questions and answers that I have received.
Q1) What are you going to India for? Can’t you learn what plants are there from books?
A1) You can indeed learn about what plants grow in India from books. What I am interested in are the relationships the plants have with each other. What plants commonly grow together, How seasonal fluctuations affect the look of the forest ect… Also the trip will allow us to learn more ethnobotanical questions. (The field of Ethnobotany explores the relationships humans have with plants.) Are plants used for food, timber, clothing. Determining how different plants are used in the construction of homes would be of interest, maybe the type of palm fiber that is used to thatch a roof for example.
Q2) Will you be traveling on your own?
A2) We have contracted a driver and guides to assist us.
Q3) Where are the Western Ghats Mountains?
A3) They are in the south western corner of India. They receive extremely large amounts of rainfall during the monsoons. The Western Ghats form one of the three main watersheds in India and creating the Krishna, Kaveri, and Godavari rivers, all of which flow east into the Bay of Bengal.
Feel free to add more questions. Jordyn and I will be happy to answer.