Nature writings


peapod
#61
I will check it out in a little while big H, right now I have to go and plant my beets but I shall return
 
peapod
#62
Thanks big H, I read it with the morning java it would be fun to go a-roaming with you big H, you visit luxurious places :P I have been visiting a place big H, and when I am finished reading it, I am going to send it to you. :P



"Slice an apple through at its equator and you will find five small chambers arrayed in a perfectly symmetrical starburst---a pentagram. Each of the chambers hold a seed (ocassionally two) of such a deep lustrous brown they might have been oiled and polished by a woodworker. Two facts about these seeds are worth noting. First they contain a small quantity of cyanide, probally a defense the apple evilved to discourage animals from biting into them: they're almost indescribably bitter.

The second, most important fact about those seeds concerns their genetic contents, which are likewise full of surprises. Every seed in that apple, not to mention every seed riding down the Ohio alongside John Chapman, contains the instructions for a completely new and different apple tree, one that, if planted, would bear only the most glancing resemblance to its parents. If not for grafting---the ancient technique of cloning tree--every apple in the world would be its own distinct variety, and it would be impossible to keep a good one going beyond the life span of that particular tree. In the case of the apple, the fruit nearly always falls far from the tree.
The botanical term for this varability is "heterzygosity" and while there are many species that share it (our own included) , in the apple the tendency is extreme.

This book tells a different kind of story about Man and Nature, one that aims to put us back in the great reciprocal web that is life on earth. My hope is that by the time you close its covers, things outside (and inside) will look a little different, so that when you see an apple tree across the road or a tulip across a table, it won't appear quite so alien, so other. Seeing these plants instead as willing partners in an intimate and reciprocal relationship with us means looking at ourselves a little differently, too: as the objects of other species designs and desires, as one of the newer bees in darwin's garden---ingenious, sometimes reckless, and remarkably unselfconscious. Think of this book as that bee's mirror.

I have choosen the apple, the tulip, cannabis, and the potato for several logical sounding reasons. One is they represent four important classes of domesticated plants (a fruit, a flower, a drug plant and a staple food). Also, having grown these four plants at one time or another in my own garden, I am on fairly intimate terms with them. But the real reason I chose these plants and not another four is simpler than that: they have great stories to tell."

Exciting stuff eh? big H :P
 
Hard-Luck Henry
#63
Quote:

My hope is that by the time you close its covers, things outside (and inside) will look a little different

They do already! Well, you learn something new every day. With you around, anyway. Thanks P. (And thanks for dear abby too. Not )

 
peapod
#64
I am just another person on the foot path, I just pass the messages on...pass it on big H. :P

The name of the book is The Botany of desire...hey with that title even nickfun might read it.

by michael pollan A plant's-eye view of the world
 
NickFun
#65
I just found this post Peapod. Sounds like my kind of literature!
 

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