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Twilight Botanical Lecture Series Explores Mysterious South Pacific Island

The Twilight Botanical Lectures series sponsored by Old Dominion University and Norfolk Botanical Garden (NBG) will present a program titled "New Discoveries in Archaeology, Anthropology and Natural History from the Mysterious South Pacific Island of Rapa iti" at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 18, in Room 101 of the Mills Godwin Jr. Building at ODU.

Timothy Motley, the J. Robert Stiffler Distinguished Professor in Botany and Horticulture, will be the lecturer. His post was created jointly by ODU and NBG in 2006. Motley has teaching responsibilities at ODU and research space and a greenhouse at NBG, where he is director of science.

Stiffler is the long-time gardening columnist of The Virginian-Pilot, a collaborator with horticulturists at NBG and the author of "Gardening in Southeastern Virginia and Northeastern North Carolina." The professorship was made possible by a $1 million anonymous gift.

"I try to serve as a bridge in the region between academic research and the aspects of botany that are of more interest to the gardening public," Motley said. "This new lecture series is an outreach to the public."

The series will also include these presentations, both of which will begin at 7 p.m.: "Natural History of Orchids" by Ken Cameron, University of Wisconsin, April 3 at ODU's Mills Godwin Jr. Building in conjunction with the formal opening of the Kaplan Orchid Conservatory, and "Island Madagascar: Parasitic Plants and other Unusual Species" by Jay Bolin, ODU research assistant, May 13 at NBG.

For more information about the lecture series, call Amy Dagnall, public relations manager for NBG, at 441-5830, extension 346, or the ODU Department of Biological Sciences at 683-3595.

This article was posted on: March 3, 2008

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