Early History of Calflora
started in 1994 by Ann Dennis while at the US Forest Service to
help assess how management practices might affect wildlife, plant
diversity, and forest health. Originally an 8-character DOS filename,
Calflora was a database of species information that could be downloaded
and used on a personal computer. Subsequent versions made the taxon
table a web-searchable database, and tested the three table concept
of taxon, synonymy and occurrence data.
An important early collaborator was the Texas A&M University Bioinformatics Working Group.
In 1997, Calflora began
collaborating with the UC
Berkeley Digital Library Research Project to unite the Calflora
database with a collection of wildflower images. Digital Library
Project staff members including Ginger Ogle, Joyce Gross, Jeff Anderson-Lee,
and Loretta Willis provided invaluable assistance in advising
and developing the original CGI-based technical infrastructure of Calflora.
of the CalPhotos wildflower image collection was formed by a donation
of scanned slides from photographer and amature botanist Brother Alfred Brousseau
of St. Mary's College.
This was upplemented by additional major photo donations from the California
Academy of Sciences, California Department of Food and Agriculture,
and many private individuals. Calflora has worked with
to expand their collection of California native plant photos and weed photos.
Tony Morosco also joined
Calflora in 1997 to begin assembling a library of observation data
on California plants.
In January of 2000 Ann
Dennis, Tony Morosco, John Game, Emily Roberson, and Dean Taylor
founded the public benefit corporation The Calflora Database
to ensure the future of Calflora's services.
Calflora is an
independent organization dedicated to providing scientific information
about California plants for research, conservation, and education.
Calflora is supported by a mixture of funding from government agencies,
grants from foundations, and private donors. Many other individuals
and organizations also contribute data, expertise, and technical
For more recent information, see
Summary of 2009 or
Working with CNPS Chapters.