Circular letter December 2018

Dear Colleagues,

Greetings from Atlas Florae Europaeae, our common project on the greatest-scale mapping of vascular plants in Europe! Digital world has much developed in the latest years, and the current pace of biodiversity data mobilization is unprecedented. But even after these wonderful technical achievements, the highest level of the AFE data quality and coverage ranges it among the most valuable contributions to the biodiversity studies.

At the beginning of 2018, a new AFE book (volume 17) appeared. This long-awaited volume, devoted to the comprehensive treatment of Sorbus s.l., took much effort of the AFE contributors and editors. It summarizes and combines the hard work of generations of taxonomic experts and prominent results of thirty years of phylogenetic studies. We are glad to see that a strong network of Sorbus experts has emerged from these activities, and we regard it as an honour that AFE became part of this taxonomic history.

In the coming year we are going to finalise the following book, volume 18 (Fabaceae: Cercis to Calophaca), which also involves taxonomically difficult groups of plants. We expect to resolve the last issues soon, so that the volume can be printed by the Christmas of 2019.

The distributional data for the next volume (19, Fabaceae: Astragalus to Erophaca) are still incomplete, although the synopsis is in a good shape. We would like to bring it to your attention that this part, relatively free of problems because of the monumental work of Dietrich Podlech and colleagues, can be finalised and printed soon after the missing data have been received.

Volume 20 (Fabaceae: Glycyrrhiza to Pisum) is in progress but the text is not yet ready for distribution. We kindly ask you to be patient and allow us with some extra time to complete the draft synopsis.

Concluding this year, we wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from the secret office of Santa Claus in Finnish Lapland, which is mapped for the first time in our traditional Christmas Card. We thank you warmly for your contributions and commitment to Atlas Florae Europaeae – as warmly as we can in this cold season.

With kind regards,

Pertti Uotila                                          Arto Kurtto                                           Alexander Sennikov