Category Archives: Plants & People

Marry A Tree To Save It From Deforestation

he ceremonies are known as the “marry a tree” ritual and is being held and supported by an organization named Bedani. “I think more than 30 people got married here, men and women, who freely said ‘yes’ to their tree. The commitment is more than a symbolic wedding – it is also a commitment that is spiritual and action-oriented,” (Click on title for full story.)

Neighbor Sues Over Walnuts Falling On Cars. Court Protects Rights Of Walnuts

Walnut trees may shed their nuts, judges in the court concluded, adding that this autumnal occurrence is “a fact of nature” and must be tolerated. (Click on title for full story.)

The Lost Peoples And Lost Crops Of North America Rediscovered

Over 2,000 years ago in North America, indigenous people domesticated plants that are now part of our everyday diets, such as squashes and sunflowers. But they also bred crops that have since returned to the wild. These include erect knotweed (not to be confused with its invasive cousin, Asian knotweed), goosefoot, little barley, marsh elder, and maygrass. We haven’t simply lost a few plant strains: an entire cuisine with its own kinds of flavors and baked goods has simply disappeared. (Click on title for full story.)

The Nazi Botanist, His Murder And The International Conspiracy To Eradicate Coco

In Mendoza the police file on the case has long since disappeared, and in Ugarteche only rumors remain — of a pickup seen lurking at Condor Huasi and the arrival and departure of two Bolivians that day from the nearby airport. But, according to Cabrera at least, the long career of Nazi Germany’s top botanist was on the cusp of a dramatic final act before he was cut down. “Heinz was very close,” he says. “Everything was ready; we were going to eliminate coca.” (Click on title for full story.)

To Improve Students’ Engagement In Lessons, Take Them Outside

This study is the first to our knowledge to directly examine the effects of lessons in nature on subsequent classroom engagement. We found higher levels of classroom engagement after lessons in nature than after carefully matched classroom-based counterparts; these differences could not be explained by differences in teacher, instructional approach, class (students, classroom, and class size), time of year, or time of day, nor the order of the indoor and outdoor lessons on a given topic. It would seem that lessons in nature boost subsequent classroom engagement, and boost it a great deal; after a lesson in nature, teachers were able to teach for almost twice as long without having to interrupt instruction to redirect students’ attention. This nature advantage persisted across 10 different weeks and lesson topics, and held not only for a teacher with positive expectations for nature-based lessons but also for a teacher who anticipated negative effects of such lessons. The findings here suggest that lessons in nature allow students to simultaneously learn classroom curriculum while rejuvenating their capacity for learning, or “refuel in flight.” (Click on title for full story.)

Irrigation Technique To Farm Arid Lands Passed Along The Ancient Silk Road From Lebanon To China’s Desert

Small-scale irrigation systems similar to MGK were established at the Geokysur river delta oasis in southeast Turkmenistan about 3,000 B.C. and further west at the Tepe Gaz Tavila settlement in Iran about 5,000 B.C. The Wadi Faynan farming community, established in a desert environment in southern Jordan during the late Bronze Age, has an irrigation system nearly identical to the one at MGK, including boulder-constructed canals, cisterns and field boundaries. (Click on title for full story.)

Did Wine Making Begin In Neolithic Georgia?

The oldest of these jars came from 8,000 years ago. It’s the earliest artifact ever found showing humans consuming juice from the Eurasian grapes that are the foundation of today’s wine industry. (Click on title for full story.)

Aboriginal People Moved Valued Plant Species Around Australia As They Traveled

Newly published DNA research from a team of scientists and indigenous collaborators upturns botanical history, pointing to a vast and unacknowledged human influence in the distribution of Australia’s native plants. (Click on title for full story.)

Troubled Vets Find Their Way Home Through Botanical Garden Program

In his 20 years in the Navy, Joseph deployed five times and saw dozens of friends die. “I relive those incidents in my head every day. So the garden kinda puts that in peace when I walk, when I walk thought the front gate it really puts my mind at ease. It takes away the darkness and brings some lightness. I used to have migraines all the time and I’m down to one or two a month. And I think that’s due in part to constantly working the garden,” Joseph said. (Click on title for full story.)

With Cacao Crops Threatened Can Jackfruit Be Chocolate’s Replacement?

Jackfruit seeds are a waste product that can be fermented, roasted and converted to flour imparting a chocolate aroma, according to research. (Click on title for full story.)