Ynes Mexía is remembered as much for her prolific selection of plant specimens because her regular threat of limb and life because of her efforts to advance mathematics.
In honour of Hispanic Heritage Month, Google committed its Doodle on Sunday into the Mexican-American botanist. It was on this date in 1925 which Mexía embarked on her first botanical expedition, travel into Mexico using a bunch from Stanford University to accumulate rare botanical species. But that the 55-year old Mexía shortly decided she could reach more on her and left the group to traveling the nation for a couple of decades.
During the trip, Mexía dropped off a cliff and suffered a broken hands, bringing her excursion to a conclusion, but not until she gathered over 1,500 specimens – 50 of that were previously circulated.
Mexía was created in 1870 in Washington, DC, where her father was serving as a Mexican diplomat. She contemplated becoming a nun, but she became a social worker in San Francisco, where she had moved in 1908. Her love of botany began to bloom at the age of 51, when she began undergraduate botany studies at UC Berkeley and joined the Sierra Club.
Mexía made many expeditions during the next 12 years, frequently traveling alone on her collection travels, something very uncommon for the time. Her expeditions to destinations such as Alaska, southern Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador and Peru yielded 150,000 samples, including one new genus and many new species.
During a South America expedition in 1929, Mexía traveled about 3,000 miles up the Amazon River a canoe to its source at the Andes. During an expedition to Mexico in 1938, she was diagnosed with lung cancer, which would take her life that July at the age of 68.
Although Mexía never completed her degree, she became a celebrated botanist, lecturing frequently the Bay Area and publishing accounts of age her adventures in a variety of environmental periodicals. During her short career as a botanist, Mexía collected 150,000 specimens, including in least two new genera — Mexianthus Robinson and Spulula Mains — and roughly 500 new species, 50 of age that can be named after her.