Botany involves the study of plants from microscopic bacteria to the largest trees. According to the Botanical Society of America, plants by definition are comprised of: algae, fungi, lichens, mosses, ferns, conifers and flowers. Botany is considered a broad scientific field reflecting many unique areas of study.
One botanist might study ecology in relationship to plant life while another botanist might explore the world seeking new species of plants. Botanists may examine the structure of plants or look at plants as a whole species. It’s not unusual for a botanist to investigate the chemical make up and uses of plants.
The work environment for botanists varies as much as the areas of specialty. Some botanists labor alone while others work as part of a team. They may explore out in the field or work exclusively within a laboratory. Some botanists operate as conservationists in natural parks, forests and rangelands.
The study of botany has provided extensive benefits for mankind. Many raw materials used for creating products such as paper, adhesives, fabrics and building supplies are derived from plants. Vital medicines used to heal and save lives stem from work done by botanists in the field and in the laboratory.