April 2020
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Photos & texts by Sabina Burrascano is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 Italy License.
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How to measure leaf area

After searching for plant functional traits data on the web, I’m now trying to fill the gaps for species missing in the databases. 

Measuring plant traits can be very time consuming and sometimes expensive tools are needed.

However to measure leaf area you don’t necessarily need to buy an area meter or to waste days counting quadrats […]

Bug in LEDA traitbase

Using LEDA database on plants functional traits I found out a bug with regards to clonal growth traits.

I wrote to the authors and they blocked this trait for the moment.

However if after reading my post you downloaded information on clonal growth from LEDA double-check it and wait for the bug to be fixed!

Response and effect

Among plant functional traits it is now widely accepted to distinguish response and effect traits.

Response traits are those associated to plant response to environmental factors.

Effect traits are those related to the plant effects on ecosystem functioning.

The first group of traits affect the resilience of an ecosystem; the second determine the effects of plants on ecosystem […]

Plant functional traits web databases

Our planet hosts an incredible number of seed plants. Published estimates varied between about 231.000 and 320.000 but the latest  global checklist  rise this number up to 400.000 (see

The incredible diversity of plants is gorgeous, however it poses relevant problems to who wants to study them. The fact that after learning everything about one […]