Hello Class,

My name is Jasmine Chavez. I am a second semester Junior at UAA. My degree is a BS in Aviation Technology emphasis in Professional Piloting. I will hopefully be graduating next May. I am taking this class as an elective. I chose it because it seemed very interesting, and a great way to have an excuse to get outside and go hiking (not that you need an excuse). I haven’t had much botanical experience or journey, but have always felt it would be a great skill to have an idea of the plants that surround us. I have not had much experience in foraging, gardening, or hunting, but I am definitely interested in all of those. I really want to get out and do some berry picking this year! I have never been a big “flower girl” but I think they’re gorgeous. My favorite tree is the Weeping Willow. I have always thought it was so beautiful and awesome how the leaves fall the way they do. Since moving to Alaska, I love the Fireweed. I think it is so cool especially when flying and there is a ton of it and it actually looks like the land is on fire from them.

This is my set up for my microscope stand. I plan to use my phone, which is why it is not in the photo since it is being utilized to take the photo. I have a Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra, and it has an amazing camera and zoom. The phone kept getting the sides of the boxes in the photos, so I used the ruler as a stabilizer to hold the phone where the camera couldn’t see it or the boxes.

I look forward to learning more about Alaska Flora in this class!



One comment

  1. Welcome Jasmine,
    I guess you have a very different perspective from up in the air to see these vast expanses of fireweed. It is a a pioneer species and thus is one of the first plants to emerge in a burnt area. I have driven through a few areas that were burnt and it is a stunning view to see these amazing fields of fireweed. Otherwise they are common throughout Alaska, but not in this sort of monoculture that you can find after a fire. Thanks for sharing your microscope stand. I looked a little bit into your camera and it has some very powerful zoom features so you should be able to get some nice images with that on your set-up. Below an image from Ron Niebrugge of a fireweed field (

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