Have you ever noticed tumor-like growths on plants? Fungi, insects, mites and bacteria are like “body snatchers,” penetrating plant cells and manipulating them to produce galls, cankers and witch’s brooms for the parasites’ benefit. Fortunately, most are benign.
Mosses are among the most ancient plants on earth, and their peculiar biology shows it. The lovely leafy green plant that all of us are familiar with? It has just half the normal number of chromosomes, like an egg or sperm!
In February, when it’s still frigid at night but daytime temperatures are starting to warm, it may look like trees are just sitting there doing nothing. But inside their cells, changes are happening and sap is starting to flow.
Taking “forest baths” and recording your observations can be wonderful therapy for modern times. Here are some tips from acclaimed natural history writer Bernd Heinrich for keeping your own nature journal.
Why is it so maddeningly difficult to keep squirrels off birdfeeders? After all, they’re just rodents with brains the size of a ping-pong ball. Squirrels are such amazing problem-solvers because they’re observant, social, experimental and persistent.