Monthly Archives: March 2009

Dating With Lichens

A visit to an old graveyard, particularly one that has not been cared for, will generally reveal tombstones covered in lichens. Lichens are composite organisms; they are a symbiotic relationship between a fungus and a green alga (or a cyanobacterium). … Continue reading

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Hypoallergenic Flowers

“It has been found that allergenic plants are often favored by landscapers: ‘School after school is landscaped with the most allergenic plants possible. Even at hospitals I see landscaping so explosively allergenic that it makes me shudder,’” wrote horticulturalist Thomas … Continue reading

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Why Plants Are Where They Are

Why are there different plants in different places? If you revisit a place decades later, will the same plants still be there, only having grown larger? How do plants get where they are? All of these questions (and more) are … Continue reading

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The Plant Succession Debate

The ecologist community of the 20th century was divided over the nature of plant succession on both an ecological and a geological timescale. During the last glacial advance of the Pleistocene Epoch ice sheets covered nearly all of Canada and … Continue reading

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