Category Archives: As Kind

The Underwater Meadow

Eelgrass (Zostera marina on the U.S. east coast) is a flowering plant that grows submerged in salt water. In other words, it is not a “seaweed,” which are macrophytic algae. Eelgrass is descended from land plant that found a new … Continue reading

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Short and Spreading Oak

Nearly anywhere you go in the United States you will find oak trees. They are often large and common, so they can often contribute significantly to the look and feel of a place. The effect reaches consciousness if you are a … Continue reading

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Gathering the Laurels

I grew up enjoying the site of mountain-laurel blooming in profusion each June. It is a common understory shrub in the Hudson Highlands, one of the northeast-southwest-trending chains of mountains that make up the northern Appalachians through downstate New York. … Continue reading

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Holding the Beach in Place

I guess I had never visited the dunes of the Atlantic coast in September before, because I was surprised to discover the seaside goldenrod (Solidago sempervirens) growing amid the beach grass (Ammophila breviligulata) on South Beach, Martha’s Vineyard last weekend. It is … Continue reading

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Who Is This Joe Pye?

Joe-Pye weed has an identity crisis on a couple of fronts. First, its classification has recently changed from Eupatorium to Eutrochium. All the purple-flowered members of the old genus have been place in the new one. The purple-flowered species also have mostly whorled … Continue reading

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Inferior Rubber, Superior House Plant

The rubber plant that you see so often in corporate lobbies, doctors’ offices, living rooms and other large, bright, indirectly-lit rooms is a member of the family Moraceae, which includes mulberries and figs. Ficus elastica is native to the Himalayas, … Continue reading

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An Actual Norwegian

A lot of people love Norway spruces (Picea abies). It has whole websites devoted to extolling its virtues as a landscape tree, as a source of lumber, and as a windbreak and a good species to plant on reclaimed land. … Continue reading

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