Archive for ‘Science Lesson’

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Today’s must-read: the social life of plants

by Caroline Brown

Did you see this article in the NYT yesterday? (Warning-registration may be required.) Canadian researchers are examining the ability of plants to distinguish members of its own species from “outsiders.” Last summer scientists at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario published a study on the sea rocket (Cakile edentula), a native member of the mustard (Brassicacaea) family that grows above the high tide line on sandy beaches.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Science lesson: variegation

by Caroline Brown

Variegation is when plant foliage, stems, or flowers have more than one color. It’s most often found in leaves. The most common leaf variegation colors are white, cream and yellow, but there are many others, including pinks and purples.

Cats can also be variegated, but I’ll leave that phenomena for the pet bloggers to explain.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Science lesson: marcescent leaves

by Caroline Brown

Marcescence is when a plant part dies but is not shed. It’s most frequently noticed in the winter, when certain deciduous tree species don’t lose their dead leaves. Oaks and beeches have normally marcescent leaves. That’s an oak at left, and marcescent beech leaves are pictured below the jump.