About Jeff

banner.jpgI am a Ph.D. student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the lab of Ken Sytsma. I am mostly interested in morphological evolution in many groups of land plants, biogeographic patterns of clades, and using integrative lines of evidence to define species. I have conducted research on all major clades of land plants except for gymnosperms and plan on continuing to investigate evolutionary questions in a diverse array of clades. For my dissertation, I am investigating evolutionary trends at multiple levels in the order Ericales; a polymorphic assemblage of families including blueberries (Ericaceae), tea (Theaceae), kiwifruit (Actinidiaceae), Brazil nuts (Lecythidaceae), and New World pitcher plants (Sarraceniaceae), with a focus on floral evolution in the phlox family (Polemoniaceae) and speciation in the genus Polemonium.


The order Ericales is a morphologically heterogeneous assemblage of families once placed in several disparate orders based on the classification of Cronquist. Phylogenetic relationships in the order have been obscured by what appears to be a rapid ancient radiation. I am working in collaboration with Jürg Schönenberger (University of Vienna) to better elucidate relationships in the order, examine the evolution of morphological traits, and conduct diversification and biogeographical analyses using a chronogram calibrated with well-preserved ericalean fossils which have been discovered in the past decade.


The phlox family is a small, primarily New World family. The family is diverse vegetatively, ranging from shrubs to annual herbs, but is also diverse florally and has often been used in botany textbooks as an example of an adaptive radiation in floral form in concert with pollinators. Using a comprehensive database of morphological traits in both this family and its close relative, Fouquieriaceae, I am testing this hypothesis.






I am interested in the systematics and floristics of bryophytes (mosses, liverworts, and hornworts). This includes assembling a updated checklist of the bryophytes of Wisconsin based on current taxonomic hypotheses and an analysis of biogeographical patterns in the state, including improving knowledge of the distribution of these enigmatic plants by exploring under-collected ares of the state.



Rose, J.P., R. Kriebel, and K.J. Sytsma. 2016. Shape analysis of moss (Bryophyta) sporophytes: Insights into land plant evolution. American Journal of Botany. In press.

Rose, J.P. and J.V. Freudenstein. 2014. Cryptic and overlooked: Species delimitation in the mycoheterotrophic Monotropsis (Ericaceae: Monotropoideae). Systematic Botany 39:578-593.


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