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Panayoti Kelaides – Steppe: the superhighway of plant evolution and human migration

Panayoti Kelaides – Steppe: the superhighway of plant evolution and human migration

The four semi-arid, continental climate regions of the planet characterized as possessing a Steppe climate (Central Asia, Western America, Patagonia and the Karoo of South Africa) harbor an enormous proportion of the world’s plant species. They have also been corridors of human evolution and our very origins. And yet this climate that harbors the bulk of the world’s Iris species, Penstemon, Phlox, not to mention whole families like Mesembranthemaceae and the ancestors of most garden Peonies is little known to most home gardeners. In a world of climate change and urbanization, the Steppes provide a wide new palette of plants and possibilities.

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