Range maps in iNaturalist for Juniperus horizontalis

Range maps for J. horizontalis shown by iNat show a much more extensive range than do other fairly reliable sources. I read it is found in Canada and northern states in the U.S.
How is it that iNat show the range to include Columbia, S.A., California, Georgia, and N. Carolina, USA, Spain, and Russia?

It’s cultivated worldwide, so those are either unmarked planted ones or those that run out of culture. Or misidentified.

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A classic computer vision clean-up candidate.


There’s a LOT of planted ones and misidentifications. It’s hard to keep up with. Same goes for many other plants, so don’t use iNat range maps for plants.

I wouldn’t go this far to say don’t use them period. Just need to use a bit of discretion, as you would with any source. Mapped pts on iNat have one huge benefit over many professional sources: ability to document occurrence on private land


Is adding an “Observation Field” for cultivated the best way to respond to submitted observations from way outside of the distribution reported by reliable sources (e.g., USDA website is pretty consistent with Adams’ Junipers of the World and with Chris Earle’s conifers.org as well as Jepson)?

Wow. I just double checked California on the iNat range map and it has been changed.

There’s a voting down in observation page, you can choose thumbs down for question where it’s asking if it’s wild, I checked European obs, on most it was clear they were planted, so if you see it on photo or it’s growing on the Main Street of the city you can mark those. But take in consideration they can be escapees.

I think I understand what you mean but perhaps your intent did not come across as intended. iNat range maps for plants are extremely useful for curating a genus or species. That’s the first place one would look for false positives and other anomalies. That, and flowering phenology.

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