Tiny Water Cannons in Mushroom Land

08.19.17

These mushrooms have a job to do and evolution has given them a spectacularly clever mechanism for doing it. In Everyday Physics in the Wall Street Journal this week Helen Czerski explains.

2 Tennessee Cases Bring Coal’s Hidden Hazard to Light

04.17.17

Tatina Schlossberg reports in the New York Times on Sunday, April 15, 2017 that Coal ash gets far less attention than toxic and greenhouse gas emissions from power plants, but it has created environmental and health problems — every major river in the Southeast has at least one coal ash pond — and continuing legal troubles and large cleanup costs for the authority and other utilities.

Maine forest land faces an infestation: Fiddlehead Foragers

04.11.17

Hey, You! Stop Eating My Yard!The rise in popularity of wild vegetation like fiddleheads, mushrooms and seaweed is causing friction between foragers and landowners; ‘fry it up and eat it.’ Jennifer Levitz reports for the Wall Street Journal.

3-Yrs-After Losing Wedding Ring, Elderly Farmer Plucks Unusual Looking Carrot From His Garden.

11.13.16

Shortly after celebrating his 50th wedding anniversary with his wife, an 82-year-old man in the tiny German town of Bad Müenstereifel lost his beloved wedding ring.  Click here to read about his miraculous discovery.

Creating Bouquets the Scavenger-Hunt Way: A Guide

11.06.16

Floral designers are foraging plants and flowers in the most unlikely locations,from vacant lots to back alleys, and creating beauty with the seemingly motley booty. Into the Woods...and Parking Lots an article by Courtney Barnes, tells the reader just how to do that!

Breeding Boom Helps the Mighty Oaks Survive

11.06.16

 In a phenomenon known as masting, a population of oaks simultaneously drops an unusually large numbers of acorns. Bumper crops at unpredictable intervals increase likelihood a few seedlings will reach maturity says Jo Craven McGinty.  Read Here

Kansas City Forecast: It's Raining Bugs

10.12.16

A Midwestern metropolis is under attack from an unseen enemy, with victims pouring into doctors’ offices and pharmacies with telltale wounds. 'Itch mites' fall from trees, bite folks upon landing. ...avoid walking under red oaks, particularly pin oaks.

Thismia Americana, a thumbnail-sized flowering plant found only in Chicago

09.01.16

The Wall Street Journal reports that Chicago is seeking lost glory, as it hunts for a plant last seen in 1916. Botanists rake the city for vanished native flower Thisnia Americana.

 

Environmental Benefits of Pollination

05.18.16

Clean Air (Carbon Cycling/Sequestration)

Flowering plants produce breathable oxygen by utilizing the carbon dioxide produced by plants and animals as they respire. Levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere have been rapidly increasing in the last century, however, due to increased burning of fossil fuels and destruction of vital forests, the “earth’s lungs.” Pollinators are key to reproduction of wild plants in our fragmented global landscape. Without them, existing populations of plants would decline, even if soil, air, nutrients, and other life-sustaining elements were available.W

Water and Soils

Flowering plants help to purify water and prevent erosion through roots that holds the soil in place, and foliage that buffers the impact of rain as it falls to the earth. The water cycle depends on plants to return moisture to the atmosphere, and plants depend on pollinators to help them reproduce.

USDA Forest Service

Death Becomes Them

03.20.16

Some flowers die pretty and add a moody beauty to beds and bouquets says writer Michael Tortorello in the Wall Street Journal.