The Richard and Minnie Windler Award recognizes the authors of the best systematics and ecology papers published in Castanea during the previous year.
The 2020 Richard and Minnie Windler Award for Best Paper in Ecology goes to Ryan Huish, Amy E. Faivre, Melissa Manow, and Conley K. McMullen for “Investigations Into the Reproductive Biology of the Southern Appalachian Endemic Piratebush (Buckleya distichophylla): Pollination Biology, Fruit Development, and Seed Germination” (Castanea 84:3–27)
Piratebush (Buckleya distichophylla) is a rare Southern Appalachian endemic hemiparasite that is threatened or endangered throughout its range.
Following up on previous study of the phenology of this dioecious plant (Huish et al. 2015), Ryan Huish and his colleagues investigated reproductive biology in piratebush.
Results indicate that fruit set requires insect pollination, seed germination requires stratification, and, although embryos have high viability, seed predation is a major obstacle in recruitment. These findings are sure to play a role in the conservation of these unique and threatened populations.