She lichens me she lichens me not

By on Feb 19, 2019 in General, Nature |

I am amazed at the duress lichens will cause some people. They view lichens as a sign of death or decay and strategize to bleach it from existence. True they are found on stationary imperfect objects like grave stones or the north side of slow growing trees, but what keeps us from appreciating their natural beauty? Lichens are an intimate relationship of fungal filaments and algae creating a natural mosaic of art. The fungus protects the algae from the mean world out there and helps collect minerals and water. The algae in turn can photosynthesize making food like plants do and fix nitrogen from the atmosphere. In this intimate relationship it shares some of that with the fungus. It’s like a quid pro quo you scratch my back I’ll scratch yours intimate relationship of organisms. Who would want to break that up? She lichens me, she lichens me not. In the plant world we call the...

Moon Struck

By on Dec 28, 2018 in Nature |

You may consider it “Lunacy.” I consider it an out of this world experience. I was an Apollo age boy and yes we drank Tang, lots of it. First introduced in 1957 a couple years before I was born it was popularized by an American hero John Glenn who allegedly drank it on a NASA Mercury mission. We were from the Apollo age where Tang was the choice of astronauts and if it was good enough for them it was good enough for us. If our astronaut heroes drank Tang we drank it while gazing at the moon anticipating someday we would walk on the moon. Today it’s more than a phase. People are connecting with the phases of the moon. And as a gardener I recognize that it is an age old belief that phases of the moon affect plant growth. People are designing landscapes and patios to enjoy by the moon with white bright flowers and looking for fragrance. They are also lunar gardening...