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You are here: Home / Advanced Search and Download / About the Advanced Search and Download
Advanced Search and Download

 

About the Advanced Search and Download

General Instructions

The PLANTS Advanced Search is designed to give our users complete flexibility in displaying and downloading data.

Brief instructions:

  • Select your criteria in the search form
    • Use Review Selections or Sort Report to check your criteria or sort on up to five search fields
    • If you want to download data without viewing it, check the box for Download text file without formatted display
    • If you will want to run the search again later, check the box for Display search URL for future use; the URL appears at the bottom of the report
  • Display Results
  • To download your data from the report, click the Download link at top right
  • To review your search or sort it, click on the Review Selections or Sort Report link at top left
  • To start over, click Advanced Search on the left hand menu

A few general hints:

  • You can select more than one value within a field by using the Control key.
  • "Any" in the search means that any values will be reported in the results; it is equivalent to "all."
  • The general interaction of field values is OR within a field and AND between fields. If you select two States from the State and Province field you will get the plants that occur in either state, and if additionally you select L48 Native in Native Status you will get only plants that occur in either of those two states and are native to L48, the lower 48 U.S. states.
    • However, the interaction between State and Province and County—two different fields—is AND so that you can select states as well as counties from surrounding states.
  • The interaction between PLANTS Core Data Fields and Characteristics Data Fields is AND, therefore selecting criteria for any Characteristics Data Fields will restrict results to the 2500 or so important conservation plants for which we have these data.
  • We have attribute data such as Growth Habits or Characteristics Data only for Accepted names, except for the Legal Status fields. If legal status such as protection or prohibition is attached to a name that we consider a synonym, that status is reported with the synonym, not its Accepted counterpart.
  • You must display a field if you want to be able to sort on it.
  • For large data requests please consider the option to Download text file without formatted display.  It will appear faster and handle larger volume than a formatted display can.

Part A: PLANTS Core Data

Field Names Choices and Values Notes

1. Distribution
PLANTS Floristic Area or Not

Choose PLANTS Floristic Area, a variety of sub-areas, or Not in PLANTS Floristic Area.

PFA Sub-Area Code Description
L48 Lower 48 States
AK Alaska
HI Hawaii
PR Puerto Rico
VI U.S. Virgin Islands
CAN Canada
GL Greenland (Denmark)
SPM St. Pierre and Miquelon (France)
NA North America (non-vascular use only)

 

The PLANTS database contains native and naturalized plants of the PLANTS Floristic Area (PFA), which consists of North America and all additional U.S. territories and protectorates. Vascular plant distributions are mapped at the state and province level, and by U.S. county. Our checklists for the non-vascular mosses, liverworts, hornworts, and lichens cover all of North America north of Mexico; no additional distribution data are currently available for these plants. Checklist and plant distribution by island and island group for the U.S. territories and protectorates in the PFA Pacific Basin area are in preparation but are not yet included at PLANTS. The total number of PFA accepted taxa at the rank of binomial and below is about 38,000. PLANTS also has about 5000 vascular plants that do not occur spontaneously (i.e., are not naturalized) in the PFA; these are selected if you choose Not in PLANTS Floristic Area. Most of these are of economic importance, and many of them are cultivated within the PFA.
State and Province

Choose one or more states or provinces.

Postal Code Country
USA U.S. States
AL Alabama
AK Alaska
AZ Arizona
AR Arkansas
CA California
CO Colorado
CT Connecticut
DE Delaware
DC District of Columbia
FL Florida
GA Georgia
HI Hawaii
ID Idaho
IL Illinois
IN Indiana
IA Iowa
KS Kansas
KY Kentucky
LA Louisiana
ME Maine
MD Maryland
MA Massachusetts
MI Michigan
MN Minnesota
MS Mississippi
MO Missouri
MT Montana
NE Nebraska
NV Nevada
NH New Hampshire
NJ New Jersey
NM New Mexico
NY New York
NC North Carolina
ND North Dakota
OH Ohio
OK Oklahoma
OR Oregon
PA Pennsylvania
RI Rhode Island
SC South Carolina
SD South Dakota
TN Tennessee
TX Texas
UT Utah
VT Vermont
VA Virginia
WA Washington
WV West Virginia
WI Wisconsin
WY Wyoming
USA+ U.S. Territories and Protectorates
PR Puerto Rico
VI Virgin Islands
CAN Canada Provinces and Territories
AB Alberta
BC British Columbia
MB Manitoba
NB New Brunswick
  Newfoundland and Labrador
LB     Labrador
NF     Newfoundland
NT Northwest Territories
NS Nova Scotia
NU Nunavut
ON Ontario
PE Prince Edward Island
QC Québec
SK Saskatchewan
YT Yukon
DEN Denmark
GL Greenland
FRA France
SPM St. Pierre and Miquelon

 

We have distribution data for the vascular plants only, so if you restrict your search by either State and Province or County distribution, all other plants will be omitted from the results.
County Choose up to a maximum of 256 counties.

The interaction between State and County is OR (in contrast to the general interaction between search fields, which is AND). This lets you pick a state in addition to a county in a different state and get the plants that occur in either. However, most people who search on County will be interested in county distribution for only one state, and should leave State and Province set at Any. Do not choose a state from State and Province if you are interested in only the counties in that state.  The choice list is restricted to those states and counties for which we have county-level distribution data. Regardless of source, county distribution data are notoriously incomplete and can only be considered preliminary. For a broader idea of what may grow spontaneously in a particular county you may want to include adjacent counties that are phytogeographically similar in your search.

 
2. Taxonomy
Category

Choose one or more of these broad taxonomic Categories.

Category Category Name
DI Dicot
FN Fern
GA Green alga
GY Gymnosperm
HN Hornwort
HS Horsetail
LC Lichen
LV Liverwort
LY Lycopod
MO Monocot
MS Moss
QU Quillwort
RA Red Algae
PS Whisk-fern

 

Symbol Enter as many Symbols separated by commas into this text entry box as you like up to a limit of 500 characters. Wildcard characters (* and _) must be entered explicitly.

Downloads are automatically accompanied by the Accepted Symbol  and Synonym Symbol in separate columns. Synonym Symbol is blank for accepted names; together these two symbols link synonyms to their accepted counterparts. If you want the symbol for each name--regardless of whether it is accepted or a synonym--in only one column, choose to Include Symbol in your download.

Scientific Name Enter a Scientific Name into this text entry box if you wish. Wildcard characters (* and _) must be entered explicitly. Options: Include Accepted Names and Synonyms or Accepted Names Only; Include Only Hybrids or Only Non-Hybrids; Rank: Only Genus Epithet, Only Species Epithet, or only epithets at other available ranks; Display all Synonyms; Display Rank: Genus, Species, or other available ranks. Scientific Name, without authors, is included in every search result by default. If you want all the descendents of a genus returned, you must use the wildcard (*) after the genus name. The interaction is complex between Include Accepted Names and Synonyms / Include Accepted Names Only, and Display all Synonyms. You can omit synonyms from the search but then include all the synonyms that apply to the resulting Accepted names by choosing to Include Accepted Names Only and Display all Synonyms. Similarly, you can include Accepted names and Synonyms in the search and leave Display all Synonyms unchecked to exclude the synonyms that do not match your search criteria. Generally, unless you are doing taxonomic work or looking for complete synonymies, you will want to leave Display all Synonyms unchecked. Synonyms are always shown with their accepted counterparts. Rank is useful if you want to query only names of a particular rank, and Display Rank is useful if you want only certain ranks in your results; using these two options simultaneously should be done with care.  Display all Synonyms overrides Display Rank so if you select this option all Synonyms will be reported regardless of rank.
Author Enter an author name into this text entry box if you wish. Wildcard characters (* and _) must be entered explicitly. Options: Rank: Only Genus Author, Only Species Author, or only authors at other available ranks; Display Authors in Scientific Name; Display Authors and Scientific Name in separate fields. Rank is useful if you want to query only authors at particular ranks. Display Authors in Scientific Name provides each name part with its authority in a single string. Display Authors and Scientific Name in separate fields provides each name part and its authority in separate fields. The latter option will be used most commonly if you intend to download results for further analysis or use.
Common Name Enter a Common Name into this text entry box if you wish. Wildcard characters (* and _) must be entered explicitly.
Genus Enter a Genus name into this text entry box if you wish. Wildcard characters (* and _) must be entered explicitly.
Family Choose one or more Families.
Family Symbol Unique six character symbols are available for all Families.
Family Common Name Choose one or more Family Common Names. Family Common Names for vascular plants are mostly from Cronquist, A. 1981. An Integrated System of Classification of Flowering Plants.  Columbia University Press, New York.
Order Choose one or more Orders.
Subclass Choose one or more Subclasses.
Class Choose one or more Classes.
Subdivision Choose one or more Subdivisions.
Division Choose one or more Divisions.
Superdivision Choose one or more Superdivisions.
Subkingdom Choose one or more Subkingdoms.
Kingdom Choose one of the two Kingdoms.
ITIS TSN Enter as many ITIS TSN's (Integrated Taxonomic Information System Taxonomic Serial Numbers) separated by commas into this text entry box as you like.
 
3. Ecology
Duration

Choose one or more Durations.

Code Duration
AN Annual
BI Biennial
PR Perennial
UN Unknown

 

Some plants have different Durations depending on environment or location, so a plant can have more than one value. Multiple values are reported in order of increasing longevity in nature.
Growth Habit

Choose one or more Growth Habits.

Code Growth Habit
FB Forb/herb
GR Graminoid
LC Lichenous
LI Liana
NP Nonvascular
SH Shrub
SS Subshrub
TR Tree
VI Vine

 

Some plants have different Growth Habits depending on environment or location, so a plant can have more than one value. Multiple values are reported roughly in order of decreasing frequency in nature.
Native Status

Choose Native Status conditions for the Native Status jurisdictions. In the PLANTS searches including the Advanced Search, the various values have been collapsed onto the two primary values (Native and Introduced), but the results will return the actual values. See below for all the values and how they map onto the two primary search values.

Code   Native Status Jurisdiction
L48 Lower 48 States
AK Alaska
HI Hawaii
PR Puerto Rico
VI U.S. Virgin Islands
CAN Canada
GL Greenland (Denmark)
SPM St. Pierre and Miquelon (France)
NA North America (non-vascular Native Status is at this level only)

 

Code   Native Status
  Native:
N Native
N? Probably Native
  Introduced:
GP Garden persistent - persists around gardens and old habitations, not naturalized
GP? Probably Garden persistent - persists around gardens and old habitations, not naturalized
I Introduced
I? Probably Introduced
W Waif - an ephemeral introduction, not persistently naturalized
W? Probably a Waif - an ephemeral introduction, not persistently naturalized

 

We have broken the PFA into Native Status jurisdictions to try to improve our information about where plants are native. A plant that is native to any part of a Native Status jurisdiction (e.g., L48, the lower 48 states) is considered Native, even if some populations within that area are introduced. Thus the L48 Native Status value for smooth cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora) is N (Native) despite the existence of introduced populations on the West Coast. However, a plant like dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) is considered Native and Introduced since it has some infra-taxa that are native to L48 and some that are introduced there. Plants that do not occur in the PFA do not have Native Status values in PLANTS, though they may be cultivated or used as ornamentals within the PFA.
 
4. Legal Status If you search on any of the Legal Status fields you will get all the resulting plants that meet your criteria, including synonyms, even if you exclude synonyms from both the search and the display. This is because legal status is attached to some names that we consider synonyms, and the status applies legally only to that name.
Federal Noxious Status Restrict results to plants with or without Federal Noxious Weed status.

Code Noxious Description
NW Noxious weed
Q Quarantine

 

Federal Noxious Common Name This is the common name used by the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) Plant Protection and Quarantine (PPQ) program. It may differ from the name used by PLANTS.
State Noxious Status

Restrict results to plants with or without State Noxious Weed status, or to status in particular states.

Code Noxious Description
ADW "A" designated weed
AW A list (noxious weeds)
BDW "B" designated weed
BW B list (noxious weeds)
CAT1 Category 1 noxious weed
CAT2 Category 2 noxious weed
CAT3 Category 3 noxious weed
CAW Class A noxious weed
CBW Class B noxious weed
CCW Class C noxious weed
CW C list (noxious weeds)
IAP Invasive aquatic plant
IB Invasive, banned
ILAP Invasive aquatic plant
INB Invasive, not banned
NAW Noxious aquatic weed
NP Noxious plant
NUW Nuisance weed
NW Noxious weed
NWSPQ Noxious weed seed and plant quarantine
P Prohibited
PAP1 Prohibited aquatic plant, Class 1
PAP2 Prohibited aquatic plant, Class 2
PIB Potentially invasive, banned
PINB Potentially invasive, not banned
PIS Prohibited invasive Species
PN Public nuisance
PNW Prohibited noxious weed
PP Plant pest
PR Permit required
PRNW Primary noxious weed
Q Quarantine
QW Q list (temporary "A" list noxious weed, pending final determination )
RGNW Regulated noxious weeds
RNPS Regulated non-native plant species
RNW Restricted noxious weed
SNW Secondary noxious weed
SP Sale prohibited
WAWQ Wetland and aquatic weed quarantine

 

Be aware if you use this in conjunction with 1. Distribution. Most plants on state noxious weed lists occur in the respective states, but not all, so if you restrict results to distribution within states you may eliminate some plants from the noxious weed lists.
State Noxious Common Name This is the common name used by each state which lists a plant as noxious. It may differ from the name used by PLANTS.
PLANTS Invasive Status

Restrict results to plants with or without PLANTS Invasive Status, or to status from particular invasive lists.

U.S. Plant Protection and Quarantine. 2006. Federal noxious weed list (24 May 2006). USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. Washington, DC. 2pp.
USDA APHIS Plant Protection and Quarantine. 2005. Federal domestic quarantines (24 May 2006). USDA APHIS Plant Protection and Quarantine. Washington, DC.
STATE Assorted authors. State noxious weed lists for 46 states. State agriculture or natural resource departments.
Cal-IPC California Invasive Plant Council. 2006. California Invasive Plant Inventory. Cal-IPC Publication 2006-02 (February 2007). California Invasive Plant Council. Berkeley, California.
FLEPPC Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council. 1999. Invasive plant list (19 October 1999). Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council. Florida.
HEAR USDI, Geological Survey. 1999. Information index for selected alien plants in Hawaii (20 October 2003). Hawaiian Ecosystems at Risk Project, Biological Resources Division, Haleakala Field Station. Makawao, Hawaii.
KY Haragan, P.D. 1991. Weeds of Kentucky and adjacent states: a field guide. The University Press of Kentucky. Lexington, Kentucky. 278pp.
N'EAST Uva, R.H., J.C. Neal, & J.M. DiTomaso. 1997. Weeds of the Northeast. Cornell University Press. Ithaca, New York. 397pp.
NE&GP Stubbendieck, J., G.Y. Friisoe, & M.R. Bolick. 1994. Weeds of Nebraska and the Great Plains. Nebraska Department of Agriculture, Bureau of Plant Industry. Lincoln, Nebraska. 589pp.
SEEPPC Southeast Exotic Pest Plant Council. 1996. Invasive exotic pest plants in Tennessee (19 October 1999). Research Committee of the Tennessee Exotic Pest Plant Council. Tennessee.
SWSS Southern Weed Science Society. 1998. Weeds of the United States and Canada. CD-ROM. Southern Weed Science Society. Champaign, Illinois.
WI Hoffman, R. & K. Kearns (eds.). 1997. Wisconsin manual of control recommendations for ecologically invasive plants. Wisconsin Dept. Natural Resources. Madison, Wisconsin. 102pp.
WSWS Whitson, T.D. (ed.) et al. 1996. Weeds of the West. Western Society of Weed Science in cooperation with Cooperative Extension Services, University of Wyoming. Laramie, Wyoming. 630pp.

 

Federal T/E Status Restrict results to plants with or without Federal Threatened or Endangered status.

Code T/E Description
E Endangered
T Threatened

 

Federal T/E Common Name This is the common name used by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Division of Endangered Species. It may differ from the name used by PLANTS.
State T/E Status

Restrict results to plants with or without State Threatened or Endangered status, or to status in particular states.

Code T/E Description
CE Commercially Exploited
E Endangered
EV Exploitably Vulnerable
X Extirpated
FP Fully Protected
HS Highly Safeguarded
H Historical
PX Possibly Extirpated
PRX Presumed Extirpated
PREX Probably Extirpated
CY Protected as a Cactus, Yucca, or Christmas tree
R Rare
RI Reintroduced
SA Salvage Assessed
SR Salvage restricted
S Sensitive
SC Special Concern
T Threatened
U Unusual
V Vulnerable
WL Watch list

 

Selects state T/E plants by where they are listed. Use this field in conjunction with 1. Distribution if you want to select state T/E plants by where they occur.
State T/E Common Name This is the common name used by each state which lists a plant as protected. It may differ from the name used by PLANTS.  
National Wetland Indicator Status

Restrict results to plants with any NWI status, one or more particular statuses, or no status.

Code Wetland Type
OBL Obligate Wetland
FACW Facultative Wetland
FAC Facultative
FACU Facultative Upland
UPL Obligate Upland
NA No agreement
NI No indicator
NO No occurrence

 

Regional Wetland Indicator (Region) Restrict results to plants that are listed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as having regional wetland status within any region or one or more particular regions.

Code Region
1 Northeast
2 Southeast
3 North Central
4 North Plains
5 Central Plains
6 South Plains
7 Southwest
8 Intermountain
9 Northwest
0 California
A Alaska
C Caribbean
H Hawaii

 

The distributions in PLANTS do not agree perfectly with the regional distributions implied by NWI; most discrepancies exist since NWI has not been updated since 1988. Use care if you combine geographic criteria such as state distribution with Regional Wetland Indicator criteria.
Regional Wetland Indicator (Status)

Restrict results to plants with any Regional NWI status or one or more particular statuses.

Code Wetland Type
OBL Obligate Wetland
FACW Facultative Wetland
FAC Facultative
FACU Facultative Upland
UPL Obligate Upland
NA No agreement
NI No indicator
NO No occurrence

 

Will usually be used in conjunction with the previous field to select one or more particular statuses within a given region or regions.
 
5. Additional information in PLANTS
Gallery Restrict results to plants with or without photos or line drawings.
Fact Sheets Restrict results to plants with or without Fact Sheets.
Plant Guides Restrict results to plants with or without Plant Guides.
Characteristics Data Restrict results to plants with or without Characteristics Data. If you select Only Without Characteristics Data and then enter any criteria in Part B: Characteristics Data, the result will be null.
 

Part B: Characteristics Data

See Conservation Plant Characteristics Data Definitions for information about these fields and their values.
Cultivar Name: This is the formal name given to each cultivar. If no cultivar name is given then data refer to the species as a whole. There are a few plants that have only cultivar data and lack species data, but most plants with cultivar data also have separate species data.