Faculty Colloquium: Susan Kephart

Please join us Friday, March 9th, at 3 p.m. in the Hatfield Room for our sixth Faculty Colloquium of this semester.

Presenter: Susan Kephart, Professor of Biology

Title: Stalking the Wild Camas “Lily” Susan Kepart Photo

Abstract: Camassia, “qém’es” or camas lily, includes spectacular, spring-flowering bulbs that still enrich diverse indigenous cultures, and provided a staple food for Willamette Valley Kalapuyans. Camas plants also sustain ecological complexes of pollinators, gophers, and unusual “parasitic” flies. First described in 1813 from specimens collected by Lewis & Clark, they remain challenging scientifically due to extensive variation in form and genetic makeup.

How do we decipher the puzzling variability of this culturally and ecologically significant genus? I will share recent discoveries based on diverse data sets gathered with students, colleagues, and local volunteers. These include new findings with deep historical roots in environments ranging from the Columbia River drainage to the base of Mt. Adams. I will also highlight the field and lab experiments.

Students are welcome and coffee and treats will be provided. We look forward to seeing you there.

Ellen Eisenberg and Bill Kelm
Faculty Colloquium Coordinators