Research Interest

I study the phylogenetic and geographic history of various flowering plant families based based on fossil remains of flowers, fruits, pollen, leaves and wood in the range of 20 to 80 million years old. The fossils are collected mainly from Paleocene and Eocene floras of western North America, eastern Asia, and central Europe, as well as Panama and Colombia.  I have documented the earliest known bananas, kiwi fruits, walnuts, cashews, grapes, and other familiar fruits based on their fossil remains. I enjoy the detective work that is necessary in order to reassemble extinct plant species and genera from their detached fossil organs. This work provides new taxonomic and morphological data for inclusion in phylogenetic and analyses of angiosperms.


Collection Activities

My field work in search of well-preserved fossils takes me to remote parts of Oregon, Wyoming, Montana, and North Dakota as well as to Germany, Czech Republic, Hungary, India, Russia, China, and Japan.