Our publications 

Botany aT the Bar

Forthcoming Book by Shoots & Roots Bitters

Botany at the Bar is a comprehensive book on bitters written by the three female scientists who founded Shoots & Roots Bitters. This book takes readers on an in-depth exploration of the cultural, botanical, sensory, and health aspects of bitters. The book provides step-by-step guidance on how to make science-based bitters grounded in stories, flavors, and experiences from different geographies around the world. We end with cocktail recipes designed in collaboration with mixologist Christian Schaal and paired with botanical profiles so you can learn more about the botanical diversity you are consuming. Forthcoming 2018

Published by Leaping Hare Press (Quatro Group UK) and Roost Books (USA)



A portion of our profits are used to fund plant science research


Stoy, P.C.; Ahmed, S., Jarchow, M.; Rashford, B.; Swanson, D.; Albeke, S.; Bromley, G.; Brookshire, E.N.J.; Dixon, M.; Haggerty, J.; Miller, P.; Peyton, B.; Royem, A,; Spangler, L.; Straub, C.; Poulter, B. 2018. Opportunities and Tradeoffs Among BECCS and the Food, Water, Energy, Biodiversity, and Social Systems Nexus at Regional Scales. Bioscience (DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/biosci/bix145)  

Ahmed, S.; Byker Shanks, C.; Smith, T.; Shanks, J. 2017. Fruit and Vegetable Desirability is Lower in More Rural Built Food Environments of Montana using the Produce Desirability (ProDes) Tool. Food Security In press

Han, W.Y.;  Wang, D.H.; Fu, S.W.; Ahmed, S. 2017. Tea from Organic Production Has Higher Functional Quality Compared to Conventional Management Systems in China. Biological Agriculture & Horticulture (DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01448765.2017.1396497)

Huang, W.; Jarvis, D.; Ahmed, S.; Chunlin, L. 2017. Tartary Buckwheat Genetic Diversity in the Himalayas is Associated with Farmer Landrace Diversity and Low Dietary Dependence. Sustainability 9: 1806 (DOI: https://doi:10.3390/su9101806)

Xin, T.; Huang, W.; de Riek,J.; Zhang, S.; Ahmed, S.; Long, C. 2017. Cultural Factors Enhance the Genetic Diversity of Camellia Reticulata More than Geography. Ecology and Evolution 1-12 (DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/ece3.3340)

Ahmed, S.; Sclafani, A.; Aquino, E.; Kala, S.; Barias, L.; Eeg, J. 2017. Building Student Capacity to Lead Sustainability Transitions in the Food System through Farm-based Authentic Research Modules in Sustainability Sciences (FARMS). Elementa Science of the Anthropocene 5: 46 (DOI: https://doi.org/10.1525/elementa.239)

Ahmed, S.; Byker Shanks, C. 2017. Quality of Vegetables based on Total Phenolic Scores is Lower in More Rural Consumer Food Environments in a Rural American State. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 14 (924) (DOI: https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph14080924)

Valley, W.; Wittman, H.; Jordan, N.; Ahmed, S.; Galt, R. 2017. An Emerging Signature Pedagogy for Sustainable Food Systems Education. Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems  1-14 (DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/S1742170517000199)

Herforth, A.; Ahmed, S.; Remans, R.; Fanzo, J.; DeClerck, F. 2017. Creating Sustainable, Resilient Food Systems for Healthy Diets. United Nations Standing Committee on Nutrition News 42: 15-22

Ahmed, S.; Buckley, S.; Stratton, A.; Asefaha, F.; Reynolds, M.; Butler, C.; Orians, C. 2017. Sedum Groundcover Variably Enhances Performance and Phenolic Concentrations of Perennial Culinary Herbs in an Urban Edible Green Roof. Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems (DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/21683565.2017.1279703)

Ahmed, S.; Stepp, J.R. 2016. Beyond Yields: Climate Effects on Specialty Crop Quality and Agroecological Management. Elementa: Science of the Anthropocene (Forum on New Pathways to Sustainability in Agroecological Systems). 4: 000092

Boehm, R.; Cash, S.; Anderson, B.; Ahmed, S.; Griffin, T.; Robbat, Jr., A.; Stepp, J.R.; Han, W.; Hazel, M.; Orians, C. 2016. Association Between Empirically Estimated Monsoon Dynamics and Other Weather Factors and Historical Tea Yields in China: Results From a Yield Response Model. Climate 4(2)

Herforth, A. and Ahmed, S. The Food Environment, Its Effects on Dietary Consumption, and Potential for Measurement Within Agriculture-Nutrition Interventions. Food Security DOI 10.1007/s12571-015-0455-8

Byker Shanks C, Ahmed S, Smith T, Houghtaling B, Jenkins M, Margetts M, Schultz D, Stephen L. Quality of Fruits and Vegetables using the Nutrition Environment Measurement Survey (NEMS) is Lower in More Rural Counties of Montana. Preventing Chronic Disease In press

Ahmed, S; Stepp, JR; Xue, D. 2015. Cultivating Botanicals for Sensory Quality: From Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) to Taste Discernment by Smallholder Tea Farmers. In: Reynertson, Kurt. Ed. Botanicals: Methods for Quality and Authenticity. CRC Press, Taylor & Francis Group, LLC

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Hong, L.; Zhuo, J.; Lei, Q.; Zhou, J.; Ahmed, S.; Wang, C.; Long, Y.; Li, F.; Long, C. Ethnobotany of wild plants used for starting fermented beverages in Shui communities of southwest China. Journal of Ethnobotany and Ethnomedicine In press


Yang, L; Ahmed, S; Stepp, JR; Shengi, P; Gang, X. 2014. Cultural and Ecosystem Services of Flowering Quince (Chaenomeles speciosa) in the Naxi and Tibetan Highlands of NW Yunnan, China. Economic Botany In press


Jordan, N., Grossman, J., Lawrence, P., Harmon, A., Dyer, W., Maxwell, B., Cadieuz, K.V., Galt, R., Rojas, A., Byker, C., Ahmed, S., Kebreab, E., Singh, V., Michaels, T., Tzenis, C. New Curricula For Undergraduate Food Systems Education: A Sustainable Agriculture Education Perspective. NACTA 58(4): 302


Kowalsick, A; Kfoury, N; Robbat, A; Ahmed, S; Orians, C; Griffin, T; Cash, S; Stepp, R. Metabolite profiling of Camellia sinensis by automated sequential, multidimensional gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC-GC/MS) reveals strong monsoon effects on tea constituents. Journal of Chromatography A 1370 (28):  230–239  DOI: 10.1016/j.chroma.2014.10.058


Ma, JZ; Yang, LX; Shen XL; Ahmed, S; Xu, G. 2014. Effects of Traditional Chinese Medicinal Plants on the Insulin Sensitizing Ability of DXMS-induced Insulin Resistant HepG2 Cells. Natural Products and Bioprospecting 4:197–206 DOI 10.1007/s13659-014-0028-0


Ahmed, S; Stepp, JR; Orians, C.; Griffin, T; Matyas, C.; Robbat, A.; Cash, S.; Xue, D; Chunlin, L; Unachuckwu, U.; Buckley, S; Small, D; Kennelly, E. Effects of Extreme Climate Events on Tea (Camellia sinensis) Functional Quality Validate Indigenous Farmer Knowledge and Sensory Preferences in Tropical China. PLoS One 9(10): e109126. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0109126


Ahmed, S. 2014. Tea and the Taste of Climate Change: Understanding Impacts of Environmental Variation on Botanical Quality. Herbal Gram 103; Fall 2014 (Cover Story)


Ahmed, S.; Orians, C.; Griffin, T.; Buckley, S.; Unachukwu, U.; Stratton, A.E.; Stepp, J.R.; Robbat, A.; Cash, S; Kennelly, E. 2014. Effects of Water Availability and Pest Pressures on Tea (Camellia sinensis) Growth and Functional Quality. AoB Plants DOI 10.1093/aobpla/plt054


Liu, Y.; Ahmed, S.; Long, C. 2014. Plant Species Richness and Ethnomedical Knowledge of Cooling Herbal Tisanes from Southern China. Journal of Ethnobotany and Ethnomedicine9(1): 82


Yang, L; Ahmed, S; Stepp, R; Mi, K; Zhao, YQ; Ma, JZ; Liang, C; Pei, S; Huai, HY; Xu, G; Xue, D. 2014. Comparative Homegarden Medical Ethnobotany of Naxi Healers and Farmers in Northwesten Yunnan, China. Journal of Ethnobotany and Ethnomedicine 10:6


Liu, Y; Ahmed, S; Liu, B; Guo, Z; Huang, W; Wu, X; Li, S; Long, C. 2014. Ethnobotany of Dye Plants in Dong Communities in the Uplands of South Central China. Journal of Ethnobotany and Ethnomedicine 9 (1): 82


Ahmed, S; Peters, CM; Chunlin, L; Meyer, R; Unachukwu, U; Litt, A; Kennelly, E; Stepp, JR. 2013. Biodiversity and Phytochemical Quality in Indigenous and State-Supported Tea Management Systems of Yunnan, China. Conservation Letters. 5 (6): 28-36 


Ahmed, S.; Herforth, A. 2013. Future Food: Use Local Knowledge.Nature 499 (409) (Correspondence)


Stoeckle, M; Gamble, C; Kirpekar, R; Young, G; Ahmed, S; Little, D. 2011. Commercial Teas Highlight Plant DNA Barcode Identification Successes and Obstacles. Scientific Reports(Nature Publishing Group). 1 (42) DOI: 10.1038/srep00042


Yang, L; Stepp, JR; Ahmed, S; Shenji, P; Dayuan, X. 2011. The Role of Montane Forests for Indigenous Dongba Papermaking in the Naxi Highlands of Northwest Yunnan, China. Mountain Research and Development. 31 (4): 334-342 


Ahmed, S; Stepp, JR; Toleno, R; Peters, CM. 2010. Increased Market Integration, Value, and Ecological Knowledge of Tea Agro-forests in the Akha Highlands of Southwest China. Ecology and Society. 15 (4): 27


Ahmed, S; Unachukwu, U; Stepp, JR; Peters, CM.; Chunlin, L; Kennelly, E. 2010. Pu-erh Tea Tasting in Yunnan, China: Correlation of Drinkers’ Perceptions to Phytochemistry. Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 132: 176-185


Unachukwu, U; Ahmed, S; Kavalier, A; Lyles, J; Kennelly, E. 2010.Variation of Phenolic and Methylxanthine Composition and Anti-oxidant Activity among White and Green Teas (Camellia sinensisvar. sinensis (L.) Kuntze Theaceae). Journal of Food Science. 75 (6): C541–C548


Long, Chunlin; Ahmed, S; Wang, Xiaorong; Liu, Yitao; Long, Bo; Yang, Chunyan; Shi,Yana; Li, Xingyu, Guo, Rong. 2008. WhyMusella lasiocarpa (Musaceae) is used in Southwest China to Feed Pigs. Economic Botany. 62 (2) 


Freeman, M; Ahmed, S. 2011. Tea Horse Road: China’s Ancient Trade Road to Tibet. River Books Ltd. Bangkok, Thailand. (Large format book; 340 pages; 1.6 x 11.9 x 11.8 inches; 6.3 pounds)



Ahmed, S; Stepp, JR. 2012. Pu-erh Tea: Botany, Production, and Chemistry. In: Preedy, Victor. Ed. Tea in Health and Disease Prevention. Academic Press, Elsevier Science and Technology, Missouri. 


Ahmed, S; Stepp, JR. 2012. Green Tea: The Plants, Processing, Manufacturing and Production. In: Preedy, Victor. Ed. Tea in Health and Disease Prevention. Academic Press, Elsevier Science and Technology, Missouri. 


Ahmed, S. 2012. Review of the Clinical Evidence on Weight Loss and Tea Consumption. In: Preedy, Victor. Ed. Tea in Health and Disease Prevention. Academic Press, Elsevier Science and Technology, Missouri. 


Ahmed, S. 2013. The Terroir of Pu-erh Tea and Human Wellbeing. Twenty-one tea essays for the 21st century. 1.In: Cousineau and Hoyt, Editors. Twenty-one Tea Essays for the 21st century. Talking Leaves Press, Watsonville, CA


Ahmed, S; Freeman, M. 2012. Pu-erh Tea and the Southwest Silk Road: An Ancient Quest for Wellbeing. Specialty Tea is Hot Report; 7th Edition (Reprint) 


Ahmed, S; Freeman, M. 2011. Pu-erh Tea and the Southwest Silk Road: An Ancient Quest for Wellbeing. Herbal Gram; Summer 2011: 90 (Cover Story)


Ahmed, S. May 26th 2011. Ask the Expert Column. Tufts Now, Tufts University


Ahmed, S.; Blumberg, J. 2011. Eggs and Evidence-Based Nutrition in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010. Nutrition Close-Up Newsletter; Winter/Spring 2011


Ahmed, S. 2008. A Cup of Diversity: Learning from the Farmers of Forest Tea-Gardens. Resurgence. 250, Indigenous Intelligence Issue for the 2008 World Conservation Congress


Crane, Peter R., & Ashley DuVal (2013). 766. Cercidiphyllum magnificum. Systematic placement and fossil history of Cercidiphyllum Sib. & Zucc. Cercidiphyllaceae. Curtis's Botanical Magazine 30 (3): 177–192. 


Crane, Peter R., & Ashley DuVal (2013). 771.  Cyclocaryapaliurus.  Juglandaceae. Curtis's Botanical Magazine 30 (3): 222––232. 


Crane, Peter R., Nagata, T., Murata, J., Ohi-Toma, T., DuVal, A., Nesbitt, M. & C. Jarvis (2013). 773. Ginkgo biloba. Connections with people and art across a thousand years. Curtis's Botanical Magazine 30 (3): 239–260. 


Nagata, T., DuVal, A., Schmull M., Tchernjaja, T.A. & Peter R. Crane (2013).  Paulownia tomentosa. A Chinese plant in Japan. Curtis's Botanical Magazine 30 (3): 261–274. 


Jarvis, Charles E., DuVal, Ashley & Peter R.Crane (2014).  Gardenia jasminoides – a traditional Chinese dye plant becomes a garden ornamental in Europe. Curtis's Botanical Magazine 31 (1): xx–xx. 


Nagata, T., DuVal, A., Lack, H.W., Loudon, G., Nesbitt, M., and Crane, PR. (2013) An Unusual Xylotheque with Plant Illustrations from Early Meiji Japan. Economic Botany 67(2).http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s12231-013-9227-6/fulltext.html


Meyer, R., DuVal, A., Jensen, H. (2012) Patterns and processes in crop domestication: an historical review and quantitative analysis of 203 global food crops. New Phytologist 196: 29-48.http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1469-8137.2012.04253.x/full http://www.cropdomestication.com


DuVal, A., Muruetagoeina, T., and Ashton, PMS (2012) Multiple-Use Management of Protected Natural Areas: Integrating Conservation, Restoration and Recreation in the Spanish Basque Country. Hauppauge, Nova Science Publishers, NY.https://www.novapublishers.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=30737


Cousins, S., DuVal, A. (2012) Management Approaches for Protected Areas of Cultural and Biological Significance: The Beech Pollards of Aiako Harria Natural Park. In: A. Duval, T. Muruetagoeina and M. Ashton (eds.) Multiple-Use Management of Protected Natural Areas: Integrating Conservation, Restoration and Recreation in the Spanish Basque Country. Hauppauge, Nova Science Publishers, NY.


DuVal, A., Crane, PR. 2011. World Heritage Sites and the Future of Forests. UNESCO World Heritage Review 61, 8-17.http://pfdmedia.com/read-online/wh_61_eng_oct_2011/


Alfsen, C., DuVal, A., Elmqvist, T. (2011) The Urban Landscape as a social-ecological system for governance of ecosystem services. In Niemelä, Breuste, Guntenspergen, McIntyre Elmqvist and James (eds). Urban Ecology: Patterns, Processes and Applications. Oxford, Oxford University Press.


DuVal, A. (2010) The Role of Informal Seed Systems in the Diffusion of Açaí branco (Euterpe oleracea) Tropical Resource Institute Bulletin, Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.


Meyer, R.S., B.D. Whitaker, D.P. Little, S.-B. Wu, E.J. Kennelly, C.-L. Long, and A. Litt. Changes in phenolic constituents resulting from the domestication of eggplant. Submitted to Phytochemistry.


Meyer, R.S., M. Bamshad, D.Q. Fuller, A. Litt. Comparing medicinal uses of eggplant and related Solanaceae in China, India, and the Philippines suggests independent development of uses, cultural diffusion, and recent species substitutions. Economic Botany. Accepted. ECBO-D-13-00077.


Molina, J., K.M. Hazzouri, D. Nickrent, M. Geisler, R.S. Meyer, M.M. Pentony, J.M. Flowers, P. Pelser, J. Barcelona, S.A. Inovejas, I. Uy, W. Yuan, O. Wilkins, C.-I. Michel, S. Locklear, G.P. Concepcion, and M.D. Purugganan. 2013. Possible loss of the chloroplast genome in the parasitic flowering plant Rafflesia lagascae (Rafflesiaceae). Molecular Biology and Evolution. DOI: 10.1093/molbev/msu051


Meyer, R.S., M.P. Purugganan. 2013. Evolution of crop species: genetics of domestication and diversification. Nature Reviews Genetics. 14:840-852.


Wu, S.-B, R.S. Meyer, B.D. Whitaker, A. Litt, E.J. Kennelly. 2013. A new Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry-based strategy to integrate chemistry, morphology, and evolution of eggplant (Solanum) species. Journal of Chromatography A. doi: 10.1016/j.chroma.2013.09.017.


Meyer, R.S., Knapp, S., Karol, K.G., Little, D.P., Nee, M.H., A. Litt.  2013. Reply to J. Samuels: Taxonomic notes on several wild relatives of Solanum melongena L. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 69: 306-307. 


Wu, S.-B, R.S. Meyer, B.D. Whitaker, A. Litt, E.J. Kennelly. 2012. New glucosylated caffeoylquinic acid esters in the invasive soda apple, Solanum viarum L. Journal of Natural Products 75: 2246-2250.


Meyer, R.S., K.G. Karol, D.P. Little, M.H. Nee A. Litt. 2012. Phylogeographic relationships among Asian eggplants and new perspectives on eggplant domestication. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 63: 685-701.


Quirin, E.A., H. Mann, R.S. Meyer, A. Traini, M.L Chiusano, A. Litt, J. Bradeen. 2012. Evolutionary meta-analysis of solanaceous R gene and Solanum RGA sequences and a practical framework for cross-species comparisons. Molecular Plant Microbe Interactions 25:603-12.


Meyer, R.S. 2011. On “An open letter to federal policymakers from science students.” Plant Science Bulletin 57: 4.