Tag Archives: Kanchi Gandhi

Update on Professor Gandhi

Professor Gandhi shares about his recent trip to India ~

Group photo of BNC_low_res

“As I mentioned in the other email to you, I spent about 5 weeks in India (Dec 18-Jan 22); it was a very productive trip.

I gave 10 talks in different colleges in different parts of India. Except for 2 talks (each for 20 minutes), the other 8 talks ranged from 2 to 4 hours. Six of these talks were on sustainability and the remaining four were general in Botany. The attendees were pleased.
I also gave a 3-day workshop on plant names (Jan 11-13), which was organized at Kolkata by the Botanical Survey of India, Government of India. This was the first of its kind held in India.  90+ people (professors and botanists) attended the workshop.  They all received certificates of attendance. During those 3-day workshop, I gave 16 hour talk/discussion on plant names, which was well-received.”

Shout Out to Professor Gandhi

So many, many thanks to my former botany professor, Dr. Kanchi Gandhi, who sent my BomBom Butterflies video to many of his colleagues, friends, and students. My video is getting a growing number of hits in India! I loved every second of Doctor Gandhi’s class and wished often I could be his full time student. Professor Gandhi’s classes are held in the Harvard University Herbaria, with more than 5 million plant specimens. Along with its library, the Herbaria forms the world’s largest university owned herbarium.


Doctor Gandhi’s interests are in the areas of plant nomenclature, plant morphology, and plant taxonomy. He is currently working on the International Plant Name Index, the HUH lookup tables, and Flora of North America project. In 2010 he was awarded the American Society of Plant Taxonomist Distinguished Service Award, which is only given occasionally and reserved for individuals who have made exceptional efforts for ASPT or the plant-systematics community in general.

Kanchi Gandhi ASPT presentation

India is a country rich in flora and many species of butterlies. A beautiful Indian butterfly we on Cape Ann may find particularly interesting is the Blue Tiger Butterfly (Tirumala limniace).

Blue Tiger Butterfly Tirumala limniace

It bears a striking resemblance to our Monarch Butterfly (both members of Nymphalidae, sub-family Danainae, or Brush-foot Family of butterflies) with the clearly defined mitten-shaped cell on the underside of the hindwing. And like our Monarch caterpillars, Blue Tiger caterpillars generally feed on the milkweed family of plants (Asclepiadaceae). Another similarity is that the Blue Tiger migrates through Southern India, although the distance traveled is not quite as long as that of the Monarchs.

Images Courtesy Google Image Search