Category Archives: As Object

A Viburnum With Some Teeth

I’ve been bicycling to work on paths that are often separated from the road by a vegetated buffer that is 20 or 30 feet wide. Over the past three weeks I have noticed a flowering shrub with white corymbs and … Continue reading

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Red Versus White

This time of the year—late October—most of the deciduous trees have dropped their leaves. Prominent exceptions are members of the family Fagaceae, which includes the American beech (Fagus grandifolia) and all the oaks (Quercus). They hold on to their leaves through … Continue reading

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Plants as Decorative Idols

Making “corn dollies” is an ancient harvest custom that died out with the advent of modern mechanized harvesting methods in the 19th century and was brought back in modified form as part of the “folk revival” of the 1960s (which … Continue reading

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Making the Arrangement Stay Put and Stay Wet

If your mother was interested in flower arranging, or you are a particularly attentive florist patron, or for some reason or another you have had to dismantle a flower arrangement, you may have encountered a green, spongy substrate into which … Continue reading

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It’s Complicated Being Green

Plants are green because their cells are filled with molecules of a pigment called chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is a protein bonded to magnesium and resembles hemoglobin structurally. Chlorophyll molecules are found in organelles called chloroplast, which look suspiciously like cyanobacteria. In … Continue reading

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Fit To Be Dried

One of the memories that I have from childhood and adolescence is climbing up into the second floor of our barn—it didn’t have a real loft—and seeing bunches of flowers hanging upside down along wires stretched between the roof beams. … Continue reading

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After the Flowers Are Gone

Sure. The flowers are the primary attraction in a flower arrangement, but the vase is not exactly beside the point. A florist will, of course, supply you with a vase when you purchase an arrangement, but is it likely to … Continue reading

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