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Monday, March 31, 2008

Ecological Genetics of Plant Invasion: What Do We Know?

The rate at which plant invasions occur is accelerating globally, and a growing amount of recent research uses genetic analysis of invasive plant populations to better understand the histories, processes, and effects of plant invasions. The goal of this review is to provide natural resource managers with an introduction to this research. We discuss examples selected from published studies that examine intraspecific genetic diversity and the role of hybridization in plant invasion. We also consider the conflicting evidence that has emerged from recent research for the evolution of increased competitiveness as an explanation for invasion, and the significance of multiple genetic characteristics and patterns of genetic diversity reported in the literature across different species invasions. High and low levels of genetic diversity have been found in different invading plant populations, suggesting that either selection leading to local adaptation, or pre-adapted characteristics such as phenotypic plasticity, can lead to aggressive range expansion by colonizing nonnative species. As molecular techniques for detecting hybrids advance, it is also becoming clear that hybridization is a significant component of some plant invasions, with consequences that include increased genetic diversity within an invasive species, generation of successful novel genotypes, and genetic swamping of native plant gene pools. Genetic analysis of invasive plant populations has many applications, including predicting population response to biological or chemical control measures based on diversity levels, identifying source populations, tracking introduction routes, and elucidating mechanisms of local spread and adaptation. This information can be invaluable in developing more effectively targeted strategies for managing existing plant invasions and preventing new ones. Future genetic research, including the use of high throughput molecular marker systems and genomic approaches such as microarray analysis, has the potential to contribute to better understanding and more effective management of plant invasions. Keywords: Evolution of increased competitiveness, genetic diversity, hybridization, invasive plants. by Sarah M. Ward, John F. Gaskin, and Linda M. Wilson.

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Alternative Biofuel

In a bid to decrease the country's over dependence on fuel, various research institutions started to focus their leads in studying and identifying some of the most cost-effective and environment-friendly energy source to produce biofuels. Biofuels, such as bioethanol, biodiesel and biogas, are renewable fuels that are generally produced from agricultural crops or organic matter. This effort to find alternative bio-source is also in accordance with the recent passing into law of the Biofuel Acts or SB 2226 and the Department of Agriculture (DA)'s drive towards energy independence. The law requires that “a minimum of 1% biodiesel by volume shall be blended into all diesel engine fuels sold in the country subject to domestic supply and availability of locally sourced biodiesel component.” Violators are penalized with one to five years imprisonment and a fine ranging from Php1 million to Php5 million. Among the crops identified as potential sources of bioethanol are: sugarcane, sweet sorghum, coconut, corn, cassava, and jathropa. And now, sunflower is also coming into the picture as another potential bio-source for ethanol. The potential of sunflower (along with rapeseed) is also being studied in Taipei in their effort to look for more domestic feedstocks coupled with best available and affordable technology. Even the Brazilian agricultural experts are now optimizing the potential of sunflower by learning how to transform sunflowers into biofuel in the most cost-effective means. Other renewable energy sources that they are looking into are soybean and oilseed rape. Meanwhile, an Italian farming association is working on biofuels produced from sunflowers and sugar beets. Its sunflower oil-powered boat premiered at the recent Kyoto Protocol conference in Montreal. It sounded a bit off-beat, but the boat ran fine. According to experts, if this project pushes through in the market, this biofuel is going to be relatively inexpensive. It was also reported that everything smelled faintly like French fries after the demonstration. According to Dr. Heraldo L. Layaoen, vice president for administration, planning and external linkages of the Mariano Marcos State University (MMSU) and overall coordinator of the DA-BAR Sweet Sorghum Project, anything (crops) with cellulose can be produced into bioethanol, the main difference lies on how ease is the conversion into ethanol and how cost effective is the production. Currently, with the technologies in tact and the varieties of seeds available, DA is endorsing the use of sugarcane and sweet sorghum as feedstocks. But as research on bioethanol continues to proliferate, more potential crops are coming into the scene. Sunflowers in the PhilippinesSunflower (Helianthus annuus) is an annual plant that belongs to the family of Asteraceae and is native in North and South America. Although it is not commonly grown in the Philippines, it can thrive in its soil. The giant sunflowers (grows up to 12 feet with head up to 3 inches wide) are native in the eastern United States. The common and recommended variety of sunflower in the Philippines is the hybrid type, which grows up to 105 days after planting. There's a reason why they are called the sun-loving flowers. Sunflower is a classic example of heliotropism, or the involuntary response of plant to the sun. It turns its head directly to face the sun and reorients overnight to wait for the rising of the sunrise. So, early dawn, looking at them in a vast area of a sunflower field, they look all drooped and weak. Sunflowers in the Philippines are grown for ornamental purposes and for its edible oil. Specifically, at Central Luzon State University (CLSU), they have been growing sunflower since early 70s, mainly for its edible oil. Sunflower oil, extracted from the seeds, is used for cooking. Its oil is less expensive (and heathier) than olive oil. Its fatty acid content is composed of high oleic type that contains higher level of healthy monosaturated fats. At the moment, CLSU is reviving its sunflower production not for the edible oil but for biofuel. The sunflower seeds contain 36-42% oil and 38% protein meal. Growing sunflowers According to the group of researchers from CLSU, the best time for planting sunflower is from October to January for the first crop and February to May for the second crop. To grow sunflower well, the area for planting should have good irrigation facilities. A moderate to well-drained soil is the basic soil requirement. The group added that, soil used in growing corn, rice, and vegetable is also suitable for sunflower production. It is important to prepare the land before planting sunflowers. The recommended system of planting is single row with 75 cm space between rows and 25 cm between mounds. Seeding rate is 18-20 kg/ha given that there are 2-3 seeds with 3-4 cm depth for each mound. It is important to thin and off-bar, 14 days after the emergence of plants and to hill-up after 30 days. Although chemical control is recommended, proper use must always take into consideration. Wilted plants must be burned immediately to avoid further complications. Bees are also important in increasing seed setting up to 20% since they act as pollinators. by Rita T. dela Cruz

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Viguier’s Spurge (Euphorbia viguieri)

Viguier’s Spurge (Euphorbia viguieri) is a succulent plant from Western Madagascar. It is named for René Viguier, early 20th century French botanist. It is not a cactus, although it looks like one. The stems of this plant are narrow at the base with emerald green leaves which are basally red. White veins are prominent on the underside of the leaves. The brilliant red “flowers” (botanically called cyathia) are erect. Euphorbia viguieri seeds will usually germinate in 10-15 days, even under good conditions germination may be erratic. Parts of this species are considered toxic.

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Crown of Thorns Plant

The Crown of Thorns plant is a woody, spiny, climbing succulent shrub with shoots reaching a height of 6 feet. Leaves are found primarily on young growth, and the plant may defoliate completely if put under moisture or temperature stress. Subsequent growth will bear new leaves. The plant flowers nearly all year, and especially in the winter. The flowers are small and inconspicuous, but the brightly colored modified leaves (bracts) found just beneath the flowers are quite attractive. Euphorbia - Euphorbus was the Greek physician of King Juba II (about 50 BC to 19 AD) of Numidia (present day Algeria). King Juba II was the first person to find a succulent-type Euphorbia, and he named it after his physician. Milii - named for Baron Milius, once governor of the island of Bourbon, who introduced the species into cultivation in France in 1821. splendens - This older species name means splendid. The common names allude to the legend that the Euphorbia Milii worn by Christ at the time of his crucifixion was made from stems of this plant. Interestingly, the stems of this plant are pliable and can be intertwined into a circle. There exists substantial evidence that the species, native to Madagascar, had been brought to the Middle East before the time of Christ. The Euphorbia Milii is a member of the family Euphorbiaceae (Spurge family). It is a large family, including such plants as the Poinsettia, Castor Bean, the rubber-bearing plants of the genus Hevea, and the Cassava (from which we get tapioca). Most members of the Spurge family, for example the Euphorbia Milii, exude a sticky white sap (latex) from any cut surface. The latex is found in special branching tubes called latex tubes. The latex may produce a severe dermatitis on susceptible individuals, much like poison ivy. Generally poisonous if ingested in large amounts, the latex undoubtedly contributes to the protection of the plants from herbivores (plant consuming organisms). The latex of some species has been used for arrow poisons and to stupefy fish for capture. Euphorbias are not planted near stocked pools since the exudate from broken roots can be fatal to fish. Despite its poisonous properties, in the past the latex had been used for medicinal purposes. The common name for the family, Spurge, comes from the same root as purge or expurgate, alluding to its properties if taken internally.

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Friday, March 28, 2008

Flower Gardening Tips

All gardeners seem to search out gardening tips. It may be one of the few things all gardeners have in common. We look high and low, searching through magazines, books and forums. We look online much like you have done. We talk to anyone who just might be able to give us that missing piece...that one gardening tip or set of tips that will help us grow a more magnificent garden whether it be a flower garden, a vegetable garden, shade garden or some other type depending on how we break out the different types of gardens. We look for tips about the type of soil we have and how to improve it. We look for tips about garden design and garden plans. We look for information on what to do in each season of the year, be it planting in spring, preparing our garden in the fall for the next gardening year, making plans in the winter or just enjoying the bounty of our garden in the summer. All these different types of gardening tips and more will be found on this site. As you explore the articles listed to the right, we hope you will find that one gardening tip that will provide you with the information for which you have been searching. Or perhaps, you will simply find something you had not considered before. And once you are done with our gardening tips, feel free to browse through the other sections of our site by returning to the index page, or looking through the links at the bottom of this page, to look among the other flower garden topics available.

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Flower Gardens

Growing a flower garden is fun and (caution) addictive. Flower gardeners need information and ideas about flower garden design, planting a flower garden, how to grow flowers. Beginning & experienced flower gardeners, if it's part of flower gardens and gardening, you'll find it here -- beautiful annuals, perennials, biennials, roses, flower bulbs, flowers in pots, containers, flower beds & borders, cut flowers, propagating flowers by division, seed or cuttings... everything about flower gardens!
Feature Writer: Barbara M. Martin

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Greenhouses

While traveling in the Boston area, gardeners should visit the Margaret C. Ferguson Greenhouses at Wellesley College. Gardeners will love this educational experience. The usual mission of botanical gardens and arboretums is exhibiting plants and educating the public about them. These gardens are good places to spend quality garden time. Some gardeners take a break during their least favorite times of year and find one to meander through. Others use the opportunity, while vacationing, to seek out new plant environments. Do not miss the Margaret C. Ferguson Greenhouses while in the Boston area. The greenhouses are located on the grounds of Wellesley College in Wellesley, Massachusetts and offer a bit of history along with a chance to increase plant knowledge. History of Margaret C. Ferguson Greenhouses The brick, wood-frame and glass greenhouses, now part of the Margaret C. Ferguson Greenhouses, were built in 1922-1923. The greenhouse’s namesake and designer, Margaret C. Ferguson, was a member of Wellesley College faculty during the early 1900s. There are a total of 15 houses. Each greenhouse developed with a specific environment such as the desert, tropical forest, a Hydrophyte House and a Collections Support House with connecting areas for student research. The Annex, which was built in 1906, is the oldest of the houses and is a cool place for blooming plants. The heated and cold pits are used for hardening off or over-wintering treatments. When strolling through the houses you will come upon a symbolic reminder of the greenhouse’s greatest aspiration, the search for plant knowledge. The door of the Research House is a gentle reminder, with a sign posted, asking that you do not enter. Durant Camellias The Seasonal Display House is home to a 132-year-old Durant camellia, Camellia japonica of the Theaceae family. It is a lone survivor of a collection, donated by Mr. Henry Fowle Durant, founder of Wellesley College. A nearby plant marker explains that four camellias were part of Mr. Durant’s collection; in 1914 two plants were lost during a fire and the two remaining camellias were placed in this house in 1922. Later one of the camellias was taken out and other types of camellias have since been added. Hydrophte House In here are several pools, home to plants that have developed specialized root or air systems to thrive in a watery environment. The small duckweed - up to large examples like papyrus, bamboo or the mangrove tree - is included here. Fergie, a spouting frog fountain set in the center pool, finds this a perfect home. Laboratories Under Glass The Margaret C. Ferguson Greenhouse's brochure says, "She called the greenhouses 'laboratories under glass'." The plants you will find here are not adorned in foil ready to dazzle and shine. More likely they will be found dressed in salt-crusted clay pots, set among less manicured landscapes, but ready to teach us how they grow and thrive. The visiting gardener will learn, first by the feel of the environment and then by observing the plants.Margaret C. Ferguson

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Rose Garden

A rose garden can be a delight to the eyes, nose and more. No other type of flower or flower garden quite compares to the Queen of Flowers. With a history steeped in romance, war, and seduction, the rose reigns over all others. There is a rose for just about any garden in just about any type of climate you have. Roses even grow above the Arctic Circle. There are delicate roses and the very hardy varieties as well. Don't let any one scare you away even if you are a beginning gardener. In some climates, growing roses can be more difficult than in others but you can still enjoy the awesome glory that is a rose garden. Within your rose garden you may desire to have all of one type or color. However, gardening with several different types allows you to enjoy the versatility the rose can provide. And why limit yourself to only one color...unless, of course, you delight in a monochromatic color scheme which can be quite beautiful when created with the rose and its companion plants. So be very sure to include the rose as a part of your flower gardening adventures. Our articles listed to the right, and those that are added over time, will provide you with all sorts of rose gardening tips so you can enjoy your own rose garden.

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Garden Safety Tips

Now that summer is here, many of us will begin to build our gardens. While we may not think about it, the garden can be a dangerous place if we do not take steps to include safety into our routine. For maximum benefit with minimum effort, there are some things that you can do in the garden to make your gardening safer and more pleasurable. The sun is hot so remember to wear a hat in the garden and don't forget the sunglasses to protect yourself from the sun and flying objects that can injure your eyes. Don't forget to apply sunscreen liberally even if it is a cloudy day. A bad burn can keep you out of commission for some time and what will your garen do without you? Rocks are like furniture. Moving heavy things like stones or planters can cause injury.For safety's sake, remember to use your knees-not your back-for lifting. Use caution when working with chemicals - -safety is important-avoid dusting and spray on windy days and always wear facial protection such as dusk masks to prevent inhalation of harmful particles. Make sure you choose the correct pesticide for your garden pest and use the least toxic form. See if you can use a reduced risk product such as insecticidal soaps, borid acid, diatomaceous earth, horticultural oils, or lime-sulpher fungicides Wear proper attire.Safety gloves will protect your skin from cuts and from contaminated soil. They may also keep you from getting allergic reactions to plants and pests like Poison Oak and Ivy- and the occasional bee. If you are a fan of roses, get yourself a pair of puncture resistant gloves-save yourself from the thorns. Wear boots and no baggy clothing. Most importantly use goggles to protect your eyes when using strimmers or other cutting machinery. Place your garden tools in an area where you will not cut yourself on any sharp edges. Beware of the improperly placed garden rake-unlike the movies-getting hit in the face with a handle hurts. Make sure the garden tools and equipment you are using are in good condition because a malfunction in damaged garden tools can cause a serious injury. Use ladders, shovels, and heavy cutting machinery with safety and caution. By arthur holst

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Pollination

Pollination can occur in two ways: self-pollination-the transfer of pollen from an anther to a stigma in the same flower or to a flower on the same plant-and cross-pollination-the transfer of pollen from one plant to a stigma on a different plant, but of the same species. Self-pollination can be an effective method of pollination, but it has the disadvantage of excluding genetic variability. Cross-pollination, on the other hand, increases genetic variability within species and is promoted by many plants in a variety of ways. In some species, unisexual (male or female) flowers are produced on separate plants. This condition is called dioecy and guarantees cross-pollination. Chemical reactions between the pollen and stigmas of the same plant prevent self-pollination in many species, usually by hindering germination of the pollen grains or preventing the growth of pollen tubes. Another, perhaps less effective method for ensuring cross-pollination involves the timing of maturation of stamens and pistils: in some species the anthers release pollen before the stigmas of the same plant are ready to receive it, or the stigma may be isolated from the mature pollen produced by the same plant because its styles have not yet elongated. Pollen is usually able to germinate for only a short period after being released from the anthers, and so these species are much more likely to be pollinated by another plant.

Wind and animals are the major agents of pollination. The flowers of wind-pollinated plants are usually small, greenish, lack fragrance, and have small petals or no petals. Oaks and grasses are examples of wind-pollinated plants. The wind generally does not carry pollen far, and so individual plants frequently grow close to one another to help guarantee pollination. Nevertheless, wind delivery of pollen to stigma is not a particularly precise procedure, and some plants have evolved more accurate pollination mechanisms-they employ animals as pollinators.

Flowers must be able to attract animals if animals are to be efficient pollinators. This has been accomplished through the evolution of flower colors, shapes, sizes, and fragrances that appeal to different animals. Plants use other strategies to lure pollinators to their flowers as well, including the production of sweet nectar and nutritious pollen. However, once an animal visits a flower and comes in contact with its pollen, it needs to visit another flower of the same species for pollination to occur. Inflorescences, more or less organized clusters of two or more flowers, may have evolved in many plants to ensure visits to different flowers. In some plant groups, such as the aster family, flowers have undergone a great deal of modification and are grouped together in "head-like" inflorescences that frequently look like a single flower. The sunflower, for example, is actually made up of hundreds of tiny, separate flowers. Animal pollination has advantages for both the plants and their pollinators. The plants are able to disperse their pollen accurately and widely. The animal pollinators benefit by having a reliable and easily recognizable food source. The development of this relationship between plants and animals has been one of the most important factors in of the evolution of both groups. This coevolution between plants and their animal pollinators has meant that flowers have become adapted to attract specific animals. For example, yellow flowers are primarily attractive to bees, while red flowers attract birds. Some plants produce nectar deep inside their flowers that can be reached only by hummingbirds (with their long bills) or long-tongued insects such as moths and butterflies. Once flowers have evolved to attract a specific pollinator, they must be able to continue to attract that particular pollinator or the chances for successful pollination will be drastically reduced.

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The Flower

"Flower" is a general term that usually refers to four basic parts: sepals (collectively called the calyx), petals (collectively called the corolla), stamens (collectively called the androecium), and pistils (collectively called the gynoecium). These parts are attached to the tip of a specialized branch called a peduncle. The tip of the peduncle is called a receptacle. (For an illustration of the parts of a flower, see Plant Structures) The remarkable thing about all of these parts is that they are thought to be derived from leaves. Think of parts of a flower attached to a receptacle as if they were leaves attached to a twig, except that, unlike leaves, the different parts of a flower are separated by very short distances. These distances are so short, in fact, that when you look down at an open flower, the components (for example, the petals) of any one part (in this case the corolla) appear to be connected to the "twig" (the receptacle) at the same point. In a typical flower, the calyx, or outermost part of the flower, usually most closely resembles the leaves of the plant on which they occur. In fact, the calyx is frequently green and produces food from sunlight via photosynthesis, just as the leaves do. The calyx protects the developing flower bud in many plants. The corolla, the frequently colored part of the flower, is located just inside the calyx. Showy corollas can attract pollinators such as insects or birds. Wind-pollinated plants frequently have minute corollas or lack corollas entirely. The androecium is just inside the corolla. The individual stamens, the male reproductive organs that make up the androecium, are composed of an anther (usually a swollen structure) and a filament (a long stalk supporting the anther). With magnification, you can see that the anther is actually made up of sacs. It is in these sacs that pollen grains are produced. Pollen grains are capable of producing sperm, the male sex cells. In the center of the flower (actually at the top of the receptacle) is the gynoecium. Each individual pistil, or female reproductive organ, of the gynoecium typically looks like a flower vase and has three recognizable parts: a stigma, which will receive pollen grains, at the top of the vase; a style, the "neck-like" portion of the vase, which supports and typically elevates the stigma; and an ovary, the swollen part at the bottom. Eggs, the female sex cells, are produced in ovules, which are inside the ovary. It is important to note that the above is a description of a "typical" flower. In many species, some flower parts may be fused with others, extremely reduced, or completely absent. One example of a flower "missing" parts is the Anemone, or windflower, which lacks petals; its sepals have taken on a petal-like appearance (the sepals are colored, not green as in the typical flower). "Perfect" or "imperfect" and "complete" or "incomplete" are terms botanists use to describe the various types of variation in flowers. Perfect flowers possess male (stamens) and female (pistil) parts, while imperfect flowers lack one of these parts. Complete flowers have sepals, petals, stamens, and pistils, while incomplete flowers lack one of these parts. The typical flower described above is both perfect and complete, while anemones are perfect and incomplete. Flowers can be perfect and complete, perfect and incomplete, or imperfect and incomplete, but never imperfect and complete.

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Orchids—Hot New Phalaenopsis Cultivars

Mention orchids and what comes to mind? For me, the word conjures visions of plants festooning branches of trees in a steamy tropical forest where the silence is broken only by the sounds of waterfalls and the calls of rainbow-plumed birds. In reality, however, orchids grow in almost every imaginable habitat all over the world. There are more than 30,000 orchid species, making this family the largest of all the flowering plants. And it is their flowers, which come in myriad colors, sizes, and shapes—often resembling butterflies, moths, or insects—for which these elegant beauties are prized. The first orchid specimens were culled from the wilds of Southeast Asia by early explorers who brought the plants home to Europe, where they were coveted by wealthy hobbyists. Massive wild collecting ended in the late 1920s as attention turned to creating new orchids through hybridization. The search continues in the wild for new species, but collecting is now strictly controlled and special permits are needed to import plants to this country. otanically, orchids are monocots, which means they bear a single seed leaf or "cotyledon" upon germination. Leaves have parallel veins, and flower parts generally come in threes—three sepals and three petals. One petal, the labellum, has a unique formation that serves as a landing pad for pollinators. Although their appearances may suggest otherwise, most orchids are not fragrant. Some actually emit distasteful odors to lure their pollinators—the smellier the better if the pollinator of choice is the fly. Flowers can last for months, days, or only hours. Many orchids will grow and flower as house plants, but perhaps the best candidates are species of Phalaenopsis (pronounced "fail-en-OP-sis"), also known as moth orchids. Phalaenopsis are native to Southeast Asia, extending from the Philippines to Formosa, India, New Guinea, and Queensland. In their native habitats, Phalaenopsis grow as epiphytes (air plants), mostly on tree branches. Epiphytes can also be found growing on rocks on the ground. There are also terrestrial orchids that grow in the soil. Sometimes mistaken for parasites, epiphytes, whether ground or tree dwellers, extend their life-sustaining roots out into the air to collect moisture and nutrients. Trendsetters
Today, growing Phalaenopsis is within the reach of anyone who wants to try it—the exotic is not out of bounds. And current breeding efforts have produced exciting new cultivars, including an increasing variety of beautiful, waxy, yellow blossoms, prized by collectors such as Charles Marden Fitch, who photographs award-winning plants for the American Orchid Society. Current hybridization and breeding efforts also continue to aim at creating stripes, spots, and plants that bloom out of the usual January to March Phalaenopsis season, according to Gene Hausermann of Orchids by Hausermann, a Villa Park, Illinois nursery. Other trends include breeding for fragrance and miniature form. Recent hybridization with related genera has also been producing interesting flower formations. Crosses with Doritis, for example, produce plants with smaller but more numerous flowers on each spike. Phalaenopsis flowers are usually produced on single or on branched spikes. The number of flowers per plant varies from a few to as many as thirty. When in full bloom Phalaenopsis can be truly breathtaking to behold. Traditionally, the flowers have been white with reddish or rosy lips; hybridization is also making possible pinks, lavenders, and the aforementioned yellows. Most bloom in winter or early spring, setting spikes in the fall. Each plant will bloom at the same time year after year. Planting and Care The flowers can last for months, and while the plant is blooming the pot may be placed anywhere in your house or apartment to show at best advantage. When not blooming, plants require bright light, but not direct sunlight, which will burn the leaves, causing black spots. If you do not have enough natural light, Phalaenopsis adapt well to artificial light. Normal home temperatures are ideal. When Phalaenopsis are in spike, close observation of the buds will reveal that the lip (the one petal that is different from the other two) is on the top when the buds are formed. Just prior to opening, the bud rotates on the stem so that the lip is on the bottom. Some species will also produce plantlets on the flowering spikes, complete with leaves and roots. These small offshoots can be pruned and planted, but keep in mind that transition from plantlet to flowering specimen is a long process requiring several years and lots of patience. If you want to extend bloom time, plants can sometimes be coaxed into producing secondary flower spikes. When flowers are spent, feel along the spike for a node that has not produced flowers, but is slightly larger than the others. Cut the spike just above this node and wait for growth. The flowers on this secondary spike may not be of the quality of the original, but the results are still rewarding. To approximate their natural growing conditions, most orchids are planted in pots in a medium composed of bark chips of varying size. There are many mixes -- experiment to find one that works well for you. Phalaenopsis need to be repotted every two to three years. Either plastic or clay pots will do the trick. I prefer clay to plastic because clay gives me a better feel for when plants need water. Moth orchids require even moisture, but the excess water must drain away -- picture the plants growing on a tree branch and you will understand why. When repotting your orchid, wait until just after the plant has flowered. Fertilize with a dilute solution of orchid fertilizer once a week, especially when the plants are actively growing. Good air movement is essential. If you are a beginner, purchase a mature plant from a reputable grower. After you have had some orchid experience, you can buy seedlings, remembering that it takes time and patience to nurture these young sprouts to the flowering stage. But as any orchid lover will tell you, it's worth the wait. Further Reading To learn more about growing orchids, check your local library or bookstore for references. Probably the best source of information will be your fellow orchid growers; consider joining the American Orchid Society. Information is also available on the internet: OrchidWeb.org. The site contains helpful information about Phalaenopsis, including cultural information, book reviews, suggested plants, and more.
by Barbara Pesch

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Tanaman Rambat Yang Berbunga

Tanaman rambat banyak digunakan sebagai naungan dan juga menjadi penutup dari satu tempat yang dirasa membutuhkan pelindung dari sinar matahari. Banyak macam dan ragam tanaman hias namun yang mampu berbunga lebat dan punya warna yang indah jumlahnya sangat terbatas. Salah satunya adalah Mandevilla Sandersi tanaman rambat berbunga dengan banyak pilihan warna. Tanaman rambat memang banyak digunakan untuk menciptakan suasana rumah yang asri. Disitu memang tanaman rambat akan lebih mendukung konsep tersebut karena mampu tumbuh rimbun dan mempunyai bunga yang berwarna cerah. Kesan yang muncul selain teduh juga mampu memberikan kombinsai warna yang menawan. Mandevilla sendiri disebut juga sebagai bunga terompet karena bunga yang muncul mirip seperti terompet. Tanaman ini diyakini berasal dari wilayah Florida, Amerika Serikat dengan kombinasi warna yang beragam mulai dari merah, putih, dan pink. Bentuk kelopak juga cukup beragam salah satunya mampu tumbuh menumpuk seperti halnya adenium dokson atau bunga mawar. Tanaman yang cukup melegenda di dunia landscape dan eksterior ini mempunyai karakter membutuhkan sinar matahari penuh untuk tumbuh. Kondisi ini tentu sangat cocok dengan fungsi tanaman sebagai naungan. Apalagi bila lokasi rumah berada di daerah perkotaan yang punya suhu udara sangat panas. Menurut Badrun Sutiyuko dari Aghissa Florist Banjarmasin yang menjual mandevilla, tanaman ini meski berasal dari wilayah yang dingin namun bisa tumbuh baik dengan lingkungan yang panas. Bahkan semakin banyak terkena sinar matahari warna yang muncul akan makin cerah. Secara fisiologis tanaman ini hampir tidak berbeda dengan tanaman merambat lainnya yaitu punya batang yang menjulur dan akar yang menempel pada tempat naungan. Kelebihan yang paling menonjol pada tanaman ini adalah bentuk bunga yang cukup besar. Meski disebut juga sebagai bunga terompet namun bentuk kelopak bunga juga hampir mirip dengan kembang sepatu (hibiscus rosa-sinensis L.) Tanaman yang di luar negeri juga disebut sebagai brazilian jasmine ini punya bentuk yang cukup menarik dimana untuk kelopak bunga akan memutar dan menutup satu dengan lainnya. Bunga akan muncul diujung tangkai sehingga semakin rimbun tanaman maka bunga akan muncul makin banyak dan serempak (bunga kompak). Pada bagian daun mandevilla punya karakter yang meruncing dengan serat daun yang menonjol. Disini daun yang tumbuh tidak terlalu mendominasi dibandingkan mekarnya bunga. Tidak seperti tanaman rambat lainnya yang lebih mendominasi adalah daun sementara bunga hanya muncul di beberapa bagian saja. Suka Panas

Tanaman yang masuk dalam keluarga apocynaceae ini memang membutuhkan sinar matahari secara penuh untuk tumbuh. Sehingga saat menanam mandevilla diusahakan menghadap ke arah timur atau barat untuk mendapatkan sinar matahari yang bagus. Keunikan lain tanaman ini adalah mampu berbunga terus tanpa henti dalam satu tahunnya. Untuk kelangsungan hidup tanaman ini juga mampu tumbuh dengan baik meski sudah berusia antara 3-4 tahun. Jelas kelebihan ini jauh dari jenis tanaman lainnya yang mati setelah berbunga. Bahkan selain merambat mendevilla juga bisa tumbuh secara menjuntai karena mempunyai batang yang lemas. Perawatan tanaman ini hanya perlu sinar matahari penuh dan penyiraman yang rutin. “Bunga akan lebih banyak keluar bila terkena sinar matahari penuh dan air yang cukup,” terang Badrun. Bahkan bila perlu dilakukan penyiraman pada pagi dan sore hari setiap harinya. Meski bisa tumbuh baik dalam media tanah/tanpa pot namun bila memungkinkan lebih baik di tanam dalam pot. Sebab kondisi dalam tanah tidak bisa diprediksi karena bila terdapat cacing atau mikroorganisme yang merugikan bisa menghambat pertumbuhan. Apalagi bila sudah menyerang akar pasti tanaman tidak akan bertahan lama dan mati. Media dalam pot bisa menggunakan beberapa campuran seperti kompos, sekam bakar maupun pakis. “Sekam dan kompos lumayan bagus, bisa juga ditambahakan cocopeat bila lingkungan sangat panas,” imbuh Badrun. Yang harus diingat bahwa semakin besar ukuran pot maka akar akan lebih mudah bergerak dan akhirnya membuat tanaman tumbuh lebih sehat.Perlawanan terhadap serangga maupun penyakit setidaknya satu bulan sekali disemprot dengan insektisida. Sementara untuk pupuk bisa mengunakan slow release dengan kandungan N dan P yang lebih besar atau pupuk daun yang langsung disemprotkan pada seluruh bagian tanaman. Cantik Untuk Pagar Meski banyak difungsikan sebagai tanaman naungan namun tidak baku bahwa mandevilla harus sebagai penahan sinar matahari. Beberapa alternatif penempatan lokasi juga bisa dipilih sebab hasilnya juga tidak kalah menarik untuk menyempurnakan eksterior. Mempercantik pagar banyak dilakukan dengan menanam mandevilla atau bisa juga di rambatkan pada tiang utama teras rumah. Disitu kesan kaku dari bentuk bangunan akan hilang dengan warna hijau daun bunga yang mekar. Bahkan untuk pagar bisa sebagai penyerap debu yang efektif terutama untuk lokasi hunian di samping jalan raya. Selain itu dengan diberikan tanaman merambat maka kesan kaku dan formal dari pagar akan hilang. Karena dengan munculnya bunga akan menimbulkan kesan adem dan nyaman. Membuat kreasi sendiri juga bisa dilakukan dengan membuat penyangga yang dibentuk sesuai dengan keinginan. Bahan yang digunakan bisa beragam mulai dari potongan bambu hingga kawat yang dibentuk sedemikian rupa. Selain bambu dan kawat beberap bahan bisa juga di gunakan sebagai penyangga untuk rambatan seperti tali-temali yang tentunya didesain dengan menarik.Kreasi bentuk penyangga bisa dibentuk sesuai keinginan bahkan bisa menyerupai binatang. “Penyangga berbentuk hewan seperti burung maka mendevilla yang tumbuh juga bisa menyerupai bentuk yang sama,” terang Badrun. Kondisi ini memang menjadi salah satu keunggulan tanaman merambat dimana bentuk tanaman akan menyesuaikan dengan media rambatan.

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A Bird Habitat Garden—Plant Choices and Design Tips

Wild birds are my link to the natural world. In my city garden, I've created a small habitat for them, and they repay me with hours of "cheep" entertainment. Our wild bird populations are threatened by habitat loss, global warming, collisions with buildings, and much more. You too can help ease their plight by turning your garden, or a portion of it, into a pesticide-free bird sanctuary. You'll need to provide the birds with food, water, protective cover, and a safe place to nest. The key is to install a low-maintenance, multilayered habitat of bird-attracting plants—preferably native to your area—which offer year-round shelter and sustenance. Also install a birdbath and a feeder filled with black oil sunflower seeds. (Note: These seeds may inhibit plant growth directly underneath feeder.) Last, place a birdhouse ten feet off the ground, facing east. Make sure the entry hole is 1 1/2 inches wide to exclude starlings, which plunder the eggs and fledglings of many native birds. The plants in the design above are native to woodlands in the eastern U.S. and appeal to humans as well as birds. Grow them in fertile, moist but well-drained soil in sun or partial shade, unless otherwise indicated. by Joan McDonald

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Thursday, March 27, 2008

Horticultural Fleece Hoods - Plant protectors (L)

Protect your trees and shrubs from cold and frost with a 'winter coat' made of horticultural fleece. The large (L) plant protection hoods come in packs of 2 - each winter plant protector is 1.48m x 2.5m in height. (approx 4.8 feet x 8.2 feet) These horticultural fleece plant protectors are put together to withstand harsh German Winters - so you know they are going to be good quality. Protects from frost, chilly wind the pressure put on by snow and the damage caused by wild animals. The micro-climate underneath the fleece also prevents the bark from drying out. This stops cracks from forming - pests and fungi can't get through. Help your plants get through winter without any problems. The hoods are slipped over the plant, the cord on the bottom hem is pulled tight - finished! The UV-stabilised material means it won't degrade like cheaper non-stabilised products, which means it should be good for several years. Each large pack contains 2 winter fleece covers with product details and instructions for use.

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Kesalahan dalam perawatan anthurium

Dalam perawatan anthurium sebenarnya tidak membutuhkan langkah-langkah khusus yang sulit dilakukan, tetapi masih banyak para hobiis terutama pemula masih mengeluh bahwa Anthuriumnya mengalami gangguan penyakit hama atau jamur, daun kerdil dan pucat, terjadi kebusukan akar dan batang, tunas daun tumbuh abnormal, tangkai memanjang tidak seperti anthurium lain yang sejenis, tongkol tidak bisa jadi, dan masih banyak lagi.Pada umumnya, berbagai gangguan tersebut disebabkan beberapa kesalahan sebagai berikut : 1. Terlalu sering disiram Para penghobi biasanya terlalu sayang pada tanamannya dan melakukan penyiraman terlalu sering karena takut Anthuriumnya mengalami kekeringan. Memang pada bagian atas media terlihat cepat kering tetapi mereka tidak mengecek kelembaban media dibagian dalam. Hal ini bisa di antisipasi dengan menggunakan media tanam seporous mungkin dan melubangi sisi pot untuk kebutuhan udara pada akar. Anthurium hanya membutuhkan kelembaban yang terjaga, bukan media yang basah terus menerus. Anthurium bisa menyerap makanan melalui udara karena itu berikan media yang tidak terlalu padat untuk menjaga susunan udara pada media tetap terjaga. Sebelum menyiram anda bisa mencelupkan jari anda pada media, apabila terasa masih lembab sebaiknya penyiraman ditunda dulu. 2. Takut memotong bagian tanaman yang sakit Jika mengalami gangguan seperti daun timbul bercak yang cukup parah, para penghobi merasa sayang untuk memotong bagian yang sakit. Mereka melakukan pengobatan berharap daun yang sudah rusak ( kuning,kering ) kembali menjadi hijau. Perlu diperhatikan jika kerusakan sudah parah sebaiknya langsung di potong saja, karena penyebaran penyakit sangat cepat terutama jenis jenmanii. Anthurium yang sakit akan mengakibatkan pertumbuhan yang lambat, jadi lebih baik anda tidak ragu untuk memotong bagian yang sakit tetapi tunas baru bisa tumbuh lebih cepat. 3. Takut untuk mengecek kesehatan akar Seringkali hobiis takut membongkar media untuk mengecek kesehatan akar Anthurium, mereka terlambat membongkar media dan kebusukan akar sudah parah, pada tingkat parah kebusukan akar bisa dilihat dengan pertumbuhan yang berhenti dan daun lama mulai menguning. Akar yang sehat sangat penting bagi optimalnya pertumbuhan Anthurium, apabila akar terlalu sedikit dan masih dalam penyembuhan nutrisi akan digunakan untuk tumbuhnya akar dulu, sehingga pertumbuhan tunas akan berhenti sampai akar tumbuh cukup banyak. Jadi lakukan pengecekan akar secara berkala dan jangan takut kalau Anthurium akan stress apabila dibongkar medianya, yang penting menjaga akar tidak putus ketika media di bongkar. 4. Ragu untuk melakukan repotting Ukuran pot harus selalu disesuaikan dengan besar tanaman, umumnya para hobiis membiarkan Anthurium tumbuh besar tetapi pot tidak diganti. Yang terjadi akar tidak bisa tumbuh bebas dan saling membelit satu sama lain karena pertumbuhan akar sudah menyentuh batas tepi pot, hal ini menyebabkan Anthurium terganggu pertumbuhannya terutama pada ukuran induk yang menghambat pertumbuhan tongkol. Lakukan repotting ketika akar sudah menyentuh tepi pot, hati-hati jangan sampai teralu banyak akar yang putus, ganti media tanam lama dengan yang baru dan sterilkan terlebih dahulu. 5. Ingin yang serba praktis Anthurium berharga mahal tentu saja hanya dimiliki oleh kalangan berduit yang tentu saja menjalani kesibukan dalam rutinitas sehari-hari. Umumnya mereka hanya memberikan pupuk kimia yang praktis dalam kemasan dan meninggalkan pemakaian pupuk organik. Dan biasanya karena ingin Anthurium cepat tumbuh besar mereka memberi pupuk kimia terlalu banyak/over dosis. Pupuk organik juga dibutuhkan untuk lebih cemerlangnya tampilan daun Anthurium ataupun produktivitas tongkolnya, dan terjadinya over dosis pada pemberian pupuk kimia sangat fatal akibatnya. Tetaplah memakai pupuk organik dan pergunakan pupuk kimia sesuai dosis yang dianjurkan. 6. Tidak bisa bedakan variegata dan penyakit Seringkali karena melihat warna daun yang kuning atau putih samar para hobiis mengira bahwa tanamannya mengalami mutasi menjadi variegata. Nah beberapa hari kemudian mereka baru menyadari bahwa itu disebabkan gangguan hama, jamur atau kekurangan unsur yang dibutuhkan. Ini masih sering terjadi terutama pada pemula yang memang belum tahu tentang variegata yang sebenarnya. 7. Lupa untuk menjemur di sinar matahari Bagi para penghobi yang belum punya green house yang memenuhi syarat dengan naungan shading net, umumnya anthurium diletakkan di teras atau dalam ruangan yang teduh di dalam rumah. Apalagi dengan banyaknya kasus pencurian anthurium mereka takut anthuriumnya hilang dan selalu menempatkan didalam ruangan tanpa memperhatikan kebutuhan sinar matahari untuk fotosintesis. Rajin-rajinlah menjemur Anthurium di pagi hari semakin sering semakin baik, untuk menjaga kesegaran warna dan tumbuh roset sesuai harapan. 8. Terlalu rajin mengkilapkan daun Karena ingin Anthuriumnya selalu tampil bersih dan indah, para hobiis mengkilapkan daun dengan cairan pengkilap kimia dengan intensitas terlalu sering. Untuk pengelapan sehari-hari sebenarnya cukup menggunakan air bersih ( air mineral kemasan ) atau air biasa yang sudah diendapkan. Pengkilapan dengan cairan khusus cukup dilakukan dua minggu sekali atau sebulan sekali. Jika terlalu sering akan mengakibatkan terhambatnya proses asimilasi dan fotosintesis pada stomata daun. 9. Pengobatan yang tidak sesuai penyebabnya Para penghobi masih banyak yang belum tahu perbedaan penyakit yang disebabkan jamur, ulat, serangga, bakteri ataupun kurang nutrisi. Sehingga banyak yang melakukan pengobatan tidak sesuai yang menyebabkan penyakit tidak kunjung terobati. Kenali dulu penyebabnya dan gunakan fungisida, bakterisida, insektisida atau pemberian nutrisi yang cukup. Ada juga yang menggunakan antiseptik untuk mengobati penyakit Anthurium, sebenarnya hanya berpengaruh sedikit pada bakteri saja tidak bisa menghilangkan sepenuhnya bakteri, jamur, cendawan ataupun ulat dan serangga.

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If you live near open fields, you may see a speckled wood or a gatekeeper butterfly. Many butterflies of open fields have a habit of moving very fast (so it isn't as easy for them to be caught and eaten by birds) and it can be difficult to get a good look at them, because every time you get to where they've stopped, they fly off again - but do persevere as they can be very pretty to look at close up. The gatekeeper butterfly in the picture is feeding on the rich nectar in clover flowers growing in a field. Even though one of its wings is a bit ragged, it flew very fast in a zig zag pattern that was difficult to keep track of and it took quite a while to get a photograph. Sometimes, it can be easier to take a picture and then look at it at home, rather than trying to examine a butterfly close up in real life. Many woodland butterflies don't move as quickly as field butterflies and are easier to observe. The speckled wood butterfly in the picture has a slower, less erratic flight and also has colours that help it to blend into the dappled shade of its woodland home. I got quite close to this one and it didn't fly away. If you live near grassy chalk hillsides, you may be lucky enough to see one of the UK's beautiful blue butterflies. Moths
There are probably as many moths about at night as there are butterflies during the day. Many of them are a lot duller in their colouring than butterflies but they are still interesting to look at and some of them are very pretty. While most moths fly at night, not all of them do. The moth on the right is a Silver-Y moth - you can just make out the squiggly, creamy 'y' on its right wing. Some breed in the southern UK but many migrate here in summer and can arrive in large numbers. In 2006 there was a huge migration of Silver-Y moths to the UK, and we had hundreds of them in our garden for several weeks. They spent most of their time around oregano and lavender flowers. Another day-time flyer is the hummingbird hawk moth. Like the Silver-Y, it is also a migrant and the ones we see in the UK have often flown over from France.

The humming-bird hawk-moth is so called because it looks and behaves much like a hummingbird. Its wings flap so fast that they are just a blur and it moves very quickly from flower to the next, always hovering over the flowers it feeds from. The humming-bird hawk-moth in the picture was seen in September 2005, which was a good year for them. You can just see its proboscis sticking out as it moves in to feed on a honeysuckle flower. Burnet moths also fly in the day time and are worth looking out for to see their striking colours. Their heads, bodies and legs are black, while their wings are a dark charcoal colour with six bright red spots on each wing. They live in areas with plenty of wild flowers for the adults and caterpillars to feed on. The moths in the picture are feeding on knapweed flowers. These moths favour grass land, with many wild flowers, as their home. They don't 'do' much, as far as humans are concerned, but they are an important part of the food chain and provide part of the diet of many birds. Many field moths and butterflies are in danger because of the loss of grassland due to farming and building development. The plume moth is another one to look out for. This is my favourite kind of moth, because I find it so strange and beautiful. When this type of moth is resting, it's wings appear very narrow, but when they take flight the wings open up into five or more segments, with each segment overlapping the other. Plume moths can be found in many gardens in summer as well as in grass land and on waste ground. They will sometimes be found indoors on summer and autumn evenings, where they will show up as a small 'T' shape on a wall, ceiling or window. Somewhere to hibernate As well as needing food and shelter in summer, butterflies and moths also need somewhere to hibernate. This should be somewhere sheltered and unheated so that they can sleep through the winter till spring without being disturbed. Some will find gaps in walls or in piles of wood. Others may get into barns, open sheds, outbuildings or greenhouses where they will tuck themselves into gaps and go to sleep. The butterfly in the picture was in our house, sleeping amongst the leaves of a house plant. This wasn't really a good place for it because, although it was in a room which isn't used a lot, it does sometimes get heated which will wake the butterfly up. Hibernating butterfly If a butterfly wakes up from hibernation, then it will need to eat something if it is to survive till spring. If you find a sleeping butterfly in your house, and it wakes up, give it some sugar water and then put it in an unheated, sheltered place so it can continue to hibernate. If you do need to move a butterfly, try not to touch its wings if you can avoid it, as they are very delicate and are easily damaged.

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Wildlife gardening - Butterflies and Moths (1)

Butterflies are amongst the most beautiful of our wild creatures and almost never fail to bring a smile to your face (unless, of course, it's a cabbage white butterfly laying eggs on your cabbages). Their bright colours and delicate wings are a joy to be behold and, if they stay still for long enough, you can clearly see their furry bodies and the patterns on their wings. Moths are not as easy to spot as most of them fly at night, but there are a few that fly in the day time and some are both interesting and lovely to look at. Both butterflies and moths help to pollinate flowers so that the plants will have fruit and seed, so they are good for your wildlife garden. What do they feed on? Butterflies and moths live on the nectar from flowers and in autumn you can also see them drinking the juice from fallen fruit. A strange thing about butterflies is that they have taste buds in their feet, so that they can sample a flower by walking on it, without needing to stick their 'tongues' out first. The butterfly and moth tongues are called a 'proboscis'. The proboscis is surprisingly long and when it isn't sticking out, it is curled up into a tight spiral. When they want to drink nectar they uncurl it and dip it into the flower. In the picture is a small tortoiseshell with its proboscis partly uncurled. We found it in a cool room in our house, where it had been hibernating. It had woken up so we gave it some sugar water before finding it somewhere else to sleep. Unfortunately, because of the reduction in the plants that feed them, there are not as many butterflies and moths about as there used to be. If you plant your garden to attract them, you can help to safeguard their future. What butterfly where? You'll find that you get different types of butterfly in your garden depending on where you live and what sort of plants are growing nearby. In most urban gardens with plenty of flowers you'll see the 'usual suspects': cabbage whites, peacocks, red admirals, commas and small tortoiseshells. The comma butterfly gets its name from a white dot mark on the underside of each of its wings.

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Professional Gardening Services

Get the most out of your garden; It doesn't matter if your garden is large or small, you can transform it through 'soft landscaping'. After an initial free consultation, you can choose between different options to best meet your needs. For example, here are three options:
* you may want seasonal maintenance because you are happy with your existing garden
* you may choose to have existing beds reshaped and re-planted
*you may choose to have an in-depth garden survey and then 'remodel' rather than re-design
Whatever your choice, the aim is to make your garden more attractive and enjoyable.
Gardening for homes If you don’t have the opportunity to do the work needed to keep your garden beautiful, or if you have ideas of what you’d like but don’t know how to carry it out, you can take advantage of a friendly, professional service to do all the necessary jobs throughout the year. There is always something to be done in the garden and whilst you love your garden, you might not have the time to keep it looking its best. In today’s busy world, employing a professional gardener to carry out the hard work necessary to keep your garden beautiful will let you and your family enjoy it all the more.

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How to find the best outdoor lighting idea

Having lights outside your house is a must nowadays for security reasons. Oftentimes though, homeowners are also interested in a good outdoor lighting idea for aesthetic reasons. Here are some great ideas for excellent outdoor lighting: - How do you start? It is a fact that there are thousands of different outdoor fixture designs and styles. This can make it even more difficult for you to come up with a great outdoor lighting idea. The best thing to do is to first of all know exactly what you want out of your outdoor lighting. Is it something that you just wish to have for security reasons or do you want your lights to highlight and accent your outdoor property? Do you have a specific theme to your home and outdoor area? Your answers to these questions are crucial in determining the best outdoor lighting idea for you. - If you are intent on making a grand show of your outdoor property and lighting, then you probably cannot do things on your own. Consider getting the professional opinion and help of a lighting consultant, landscaper and a licensed electrician. An electrician in particular may not be able to add an aesthetic outdoor lighting idea but he can make sure that your fixtures and wiring are compliant with government electrical codes. - Some say that you can still make great plans for your outdoor lighting idea even after your entire home structure and landscape are done. It would make sense though to try to incorporate outdoor lighting plans with your entire residential plan if you are still about to build your home. This can help determine the proper placement of not just electrical receptacles but pipes and wires as well. - Before you finalize your outdoor lighting idea, assess your property first. Aside from a possible theme, you should also look for the focal point or points of your property. What exactly do you want people to notice first when they enter. Is it the large tree in your yard, a pool, a statue, a fountain, a walkway or an entrance arch? Once you have determined this, you can pick the right outdoor lighting idea. - Try experimenting and mixing elements. You shouldn’t have just one kind of lighting for your outdoor property. Different areas require different kinds of lighting. Arches and entrances for example would look wonderful in uplights while statues would look better with downlights as would pathways, driveways and walkways. Patios and decks on the other hand would look wonderful with well designed lamps, lanterns, scones, table lighting and floor recessed lighting. - One thing that you should never forget about your residential outdoor lighting idea is that you should be able to achieve a toned down and soothing effect. In other words, direct glaring lights should be removed. Select lighting with soft or natural glow. - Consider using portable and movable fixtures. This will allow you some flexibility when it comes to choosing lights for specific events or seasons. You may for example temporarily replace your lawn lamps with tiki torches if you are in the mood for a tropical themed gathering. You can easily do the replacement without necessarily removing your present wiring or socket placement.
by Febbe Wallace

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Wildlife Gardening for Children

Wildlife gardening isn't just about helping other creatures to survive. If you have a thriving population of birds, beetles, insects, worms, frogs and small mammals in the garden, they will naturally carry out many of the jobs that you wouldn’t particularly want to do yourself. Wildlife gardening - food-chain. Birds, frogs, toads and hedgehogs will eat slugs and snails and birds, ladybirds, wasps and hoverfly larvae will eat green and blackfly. This means that you don’t need to automatically reach for the slug pellets or the spray gun, just wait for nature to do the job for you. Remember that even the creatures you don’t like are part of the food chain and provide a meal for something else. So, a greenfly will feed on a leaf, be eaten by a ladybird, which may then be eaten by a bird. A well balanced garden is a mass of food chains and the more wildlife friendly it is, the more creatures it will feed. It will also be a lot more interesting for you and a lot more attractive and comfortable for the creatures who live there. Wildlife garden in Winter In winter, it’s easy to stay indoors and turn our backs on the garden. It’s cold and if it isn’t icy, it’s damp and foggy, and not half as much fun to be outside as it was in summer, when the air was nearly always warm and the garden full of scent and colour. We humans are lucky. We can shut the door on all that and turn the heating on, but the wild creatures that live in our gardens don’t get that choice and, with most of the winter still ahead of them, may find it hard to survive the cold months till spring. There are many ways you can help the wildlife in your garden, and many are surprisingly easy and quick to do. Something to think about at bedtime When you get ready for bed at night, think about all the other creatures that share your world who are also getting ready for bed. As it gets dark, the wildlife you have attracted to your garden like birds, bees, hoverflies, butterflies, ladybirds and other insects will all be falling asleep. Some will be tucked into bushes, or nests if it is breeding season, while others are under leaves or flowers, in wood piles or in tiny gaps in walls. As their day ends, so it begins for a host of other creatures whose daytime is our nighttime. Hedgehogs will be waking up and thinking about breakfast - if you look into the garden just after it gets dark you might be lucky enough see one trundling about through the flower beds or trotting across the lawn, though it might be more likely that you'll hear one as hedgehogs can be quite noisy little animals, rustling and snuffling as they go about their business. Along with the hedgehogs, frogs, toads and newts will be waking in their shelters under rocks or logs and will start to explore the garden looking for insects, slugs and worms to eat. Foxes, badgers, bats, shrews, voles and mice are also active at night. In fact, there is a whole world of animals living very close to most of us that we hardly ever see. By helping them, you are helping all life around you to thrive.

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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Analisa Komposisi Kimia Air Hujan dan Agroklimat terhadap Produksi Tanaman Buncis di Bandung Menggunakan Analisis Numerik

This research aimed to learn acid rain and agroclimate influence to bean plant crop result. Research location was Sukajadi district in Bandung. Data which obtained from Meteorological and Geophysical Agency contained from chemical composition and acidity of rain water, and bean plant crop result from 1994 until 1995 was obtained from Bandung City Agriculture Service. From numerical analysis result at local species bean plan crop result which soil species was alucial of Sukajadi prefecture, it could be gained that there were hare unsure in rain water which needed as nutrient for beams plant growing nd as toxic neutralizer. So some of those with its configuration with agroclimate could be ascend bean plant crop result. In beans production depending to parameters, there were some which could be correlated perfectly depend to its parameter. There were some of hare unsure which dominant for growing. The necessaries of hare unsure concentration respectively were varies, this was proved by fertilizer weight supply ratio which different.
Toni Samiaji, Rosalina Naitutu, Nurlaini, Siti Asiati

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Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Why Purple Flowers Make Such Great Choices When It Comes To Decorations

The explanation comes first and foremost from the impact purple has on the psyche: this is considered to be the color of luxury and power, also associated with mind strength and spiritual accomplishments. According to the vibrational scales by which colors are classified, purple occupies a top place being synonym with the openness towards the invisible reality beyond the material realm. Lots of purple flowers grow all over the world, and they are often included in the most sophisticated and daring decoration patterns. The aesthetic effects of such bouquets often depend on the happy combination of purple, indigo and lilac tints that maximize any artistic flowery design. In such cases the great advantage of purple flowers used in various combinations comes from the fact that they create the illusion of arrangements being somehow airy and a lot lighter than other similar ones. Opinions about purple flowers are definitely shared: some people simply hate the color, others adore it, and from a certain point of view this is the fashion victim effect triggered here. Purple carnations or violets and pink rose blossoms could be true mood boosters on a rainy day for instance; a person open to the secret language of colors could not not remain untouched by the vivid message purple flowers generally send. Lots of great arrangements can be made right at home by anyone interested enough to learn how to make the perfect flowers combination. For instance, in a room where you have used dark-colored furniture, purple flowers are definitely not a match; yet, in light-colored spaces where beige, orange and yellow tints are present, purple flowers definitely look great. And in case you wonder about when and whom to offer purple flowers, here are a few suggestions. As a general rule, purple flowers are both daring and optimistic, they should be sent or offered to very energetic people who'd perceive all their power. Though red is the favorite love color, for unconventional couples who don't care too much about color symbolism, purple flowers are a great way of expressing a variety of messages: from “I love you” to “You complete me”. Purple flowers also work great for family anniversaries since they can be offered to the in-laws with a respectful congrats message. What we mean here is that there are actually no restrictions for offering lavender roses and purple dahlias on a variety of occasions. By Muna wa Wanjiru

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Hydroponics Kits Simplify the Process of Hydroponic Gardening

There are many advantages to hydroponics, the popular soilless gardening system. It is a way to practice indoor gardening when gardening outdoors is not an options, such as in remote locales like Antarctica, outer space, or even in an apartment building high above your city. Because hydroponics uses no soil, plants are not bothered by diseases that incubate in the soil, and neither are they crowded out by weeds. Because the environment is strictly controlled in order to produce the best results with the plants being grown, hydroponics gardening usually uses less water, energy and fewer pesticides while requiring less space than conventional outdoor gardening. Hydroponic kits take all the guesswork out of growing indoors, because all of the major components are included.
What are some of the different hydroponic kits available?
1. Deep water culture kits
One method of hydroponics is deep water culture. The crown of the plant is suspended over the nutrient solution by a net. The net is placed in a hole in the center of a plastic lid, which fits on top of a plastic bucket. The roots remain in the solution to soak up nutrients, which is the plant's food. In order for plants to thrive with this gardening method, the solution must be aerated in some manner, because the movement of the liquid helps to bring the nutrient to the plant roots, allowing them to feed and oxygenates the liquid as well.
You can have one bucket or several buckets linked together in deep water culture gardening. When several buckets are used, the water is typically recirculated through all of them using spray nozzles, which helps to aerate the liquid.
2. Aeroponic gardening kits
Aeroponics is a subset of hydroponics where plants' roots, rather than being suspended in the liquid nutrient, are instead suspended in air. The roots are regularly misted with nutrient, as an alternative to floating in solution typically found in hydroponics systems. Plants grow very quickly using this type of growing system.
3. Ebb and Flow kits
This method of hydroponics was inspired by large farms that use irrigation as a means for watering outdoor crops. With ebb and flow kits, there is a pan of nutrient solution and above this pan is a tray that holds plants that are planted into some type of growing medium, such as rockwool or coir. A pump is called into play to fill the tray holding the plants with nutrient solution, and after it fills the solution drains back down into the pan. Because of the movement of the solution into and out of the tray, ebb and flow provides its own means of aeration of the nutrient solution.By Susan Slobac

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Indoor gardening supplies overcome weather and soil conditions.

Indoor gardening supplies make it possible to garden no matter the weather or soil in your locale! Whether you garden indoors professionally or as a fun hobby, indoor gardening supplies such as grow light kits with the appropriate digital ballast and LED grow lights can be used with soil based or soil-less indoor gardening systems. Gardening without using soil is a practice known as hydroponics. Because typically no soil is involved, this style of indoor gardening with a controlled growing environment can be practiced virtually anywhere--in a high-rise apartment, in the cold North where temperatures dip well below freezing, in the desert with its accompanying sweltering heat, and it even has been tested by astronauts in outer space. There are some basic indoor gardening supplies common to every style of indoor gardening, including hydroponic systems, that you might wish to pursue. All plants need light in order to survive, so you will want to provide your indoor plants with appropriate grow lights. What indoor gardening supplies do I need to get started? One major component of any hydroponics gardening system is the lighting you will use. The appropriate lighting depends on several factors, including the types of plants you are growing indoors and in which stage of their life cycle the plants are. Young seedlings require light that falls within the blue color spectrum in order to grow and reach maturity. Mature plants, such as flowers or fruiting plants like tomatoes or strawberries, need a light spectrum in the red to orange range in order to get the plants to set fruit or flower. You can find grow lights that offer specific light spectrums, so that you can provide your plants with exactly the correct light that they need to respond in the way you want. Grow lamps are also used in conjunction with a suitable digital ballast. The ballast is the device that controls the amount of electrical current flowing to the light bulb in order to get it to not only spark, but once lit, to keep a steady light emerging from the bulb. Each ballast is specifically designed to work with its own specialized grow lamp, so it is important to know whether your grow lamp is an LED (light-emitting diode),or is one of the HID(high-intensity discharge) lamps, which can include mercury vapor, low-pressure sodium, zenon short-arc, metal halide and high-pressure sodium.
There are a wide variety of indoor gardening supplies suitable for any type of indoor gardening you practice, whether a traditional greenhouse, hydroponics, or others. By Susan Slobac

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Pink Flowers That Save Your Garden Or House From A Dull Look

Pink flowers are some of the best sold plants in markets, shops and even on the Internet; the reason for their great popularity is explained by their very positive and optimistic color. Here are just a few ideas about how to use pink flowers to color your life. Do you want to save your garden or house from a dull look? Flowers are always an ideal way of bringing color and beauty even to the grayest corner of all; purple and pink flowers are often the right choice when it comes to creating a daring vivid look. Small pink flowers are ideal for children's room, particularly if you have a little girl, for the kitchen as well as for the living room or family room.
In case you plan to revive your garden with some pink flowers, you should definitely alternate several species in order to avoid creating a very blank look. Pink and red roses for instance make an excellent combination, most particularly since they stay in bloom all summer long. Pink flowers in pots make great decorations for garden alleys, the patio or the gazebo, they are fresh in appearance and seem to pass their energy onto their viewer. Moreover, depending on the plant species you'll have to take some extra care during the cold season, and even take the pots indoors. Pink flowers make excellent gifts to young ladies and teenagers, as they carry that girlish and innocent look about them. Many flower arrangements for birthday parties or proms use a combination of various pink flowers; the color in itself stands for good health, blushes and optimism. It is also the active symbol in the fight against breast cancer and it is recognized and worn as such by millions of women all over the world. The color intensity for pink flowers depends on your choice: light pink is somehow suave whereas darker tones have a more striking visual effect. For weddings and girl baptizing ceremonies pink colors often make excellent arrangements both in church as well as at the party afterwards. In the case of themed weddings pink flowers can be alternated with other daring tones like purple as they make a great match together; even the design of the wedding invitations could include the stylized picture of pink roses. The splendid decorative effect of pink flowers relies on the ability of this color to suggest a mood and create the elegant effect that not too many shades would. By Muna wa Wanjiru

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Monday, March 17, 2008

Life processes Fossils

Growth Most of the solid material in a plant is taken from the atmosphere. Through a process known as photosynthesis, plants use the energy in sunlight to convert carbon dioxide from the atmosphere into simple sugars. These sugars are then used as building blocks and form the main structural component of the plant. Plants rely on soil primarily for support and water (in quantitative terms), but also obtain nitrogen, phosphorus and other crucial elemental nutrients. For the majority of plants to grow successfully they also require oxygen in the atmosphere and around their roots for respiration. However, a few specialized vascular plants, such as Mangroves, can grow with their roots in anoxic conditions.
Factors affecting growthThe genotype of a plant affects its growth, for example selected varieties of wheat grow rapidly, maturing within 110 days, whereas others, in the same environmental conditions, grow more slowly and mature within 155 days.
Growth is also determined by environmental factors, such as temperature, available water, available light, and available nutrients in the soil. Any change in the availability of these external conditions will be reflected in the plants growth.
Biotic factors (living organisms) also affect plant growth.
Plants compete with other plants for space, water, light and nutrients. Plants can be so crowded that no single individual makes normal growth.Many plants rely on birds and insects to effect pollination. Grazing animals may affect vegetation. Soil fertility is influenced by the activity of bacteria and fungi. Bacteria, fungi, viruses, nematodes and insects can parasitise plants. Some plant roots require an association with fungi to maintain normal activity (mycorrhizal association).Simple plants like algae may have short life spans as individuals, but their populations are commonly seasonal. Other plants may be organized according to their seasonal growth pattern: Annual: live and reproduce within one growing season. Biennial: live for two growing seasons; usually reproduce in second year. Perennial: live for many growing seasons; continue to reproduce once mature. Among the vascular plants, perennials include both evergreens that keep their leaves the entire year, and deciduous plants which lose their leaves for some part of it. In temperate and boreal climates, they generally lose their leaves during the winter; many tropical plants lose their leaves during the dry season.
The growth rate of plants is extremely variable. Some mosses grow less than 0.001 mm/h, while most trees grow 0.025-0.250 mm/h. Some climbing species, such as kudzu, which do not need to produce thick supportive tissue, may grow up to 12.5 mm/h.
Plants protect themselves from frost and dehydration stress with antifreeze proteins, heat-shock proteins and sugars (sucrose is common). LEA (Late Embryogenesis Abundant) protein expression is induced by stresses and protects other proteins from aggregation as a result of desiccation and freezing.
Internal distributionVascular plants differ from other plants in that they transport nutrients between different parts through specialized structures, called xylem and phloem. They also have roots for taking up water and minerals. The xylem moves water and minerals from the root to the rest of the plant, and the phloem provides the roots with sugars and other nutrient produced by the leaves.

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Embryophytes

Dicksonia antarctica, a species of tree fern.Most familiar are the multicellular land plants, called embryophytes. They include the vascular plants, plants with full systems of leaves, stems, and roots. They also include a few of their close relatives, often called bryophytes, of which mosses and liverworts are the most common.
All of these plants have eukaryotic cells with cell walls composed of cellulose, and most obtain their energy through photosynthesis, using light and carbon dioxide to synthesize food. About three hundred plant species do not photosynthesize but are parasites on other species of photosynthetic plants. Plants are distinguished from green algae, which represent a mode of photosynthetic life similar to the kind modern plants are believed to have evolved from, by having specialized reproductive organs protected by non-reproductive tissues.
Bryophytes first appeared during the early Palaeozoic. They can only survive where moisture is available for significant periods, although some species are desiccation tolerant. Most species of bryophyte remain small throughout their life-cycle. This involves an alternation between two generations: a haploid stage, called the gametophyte, and a diploid stage, called the sporophyte. The sporophyte is short-lived and remains dependent on its parent gametophyte.
Vascular plants first appeared during the Silurian period, and by the Devonian had diversified and spread into many different land environments. They have a number of adaptations that allowed them to overcome the limitations of the bryophytes. These include a cuticle resistant to desiccation, and vascular tissues which transport water throughout the organism. In most the sporophyte acts as a separate individual, while the gametophyte remains small.
The first primitive seed plants, Pteridosperms (seed ferns) and Cordaites, both groups now extinct, appeared in the late Devonian and diversified through the Carboniferous, with further evolution through the Permian and Triassic periods. In these the gametophyte stage is completely reduced, and the sporophyte begins life inside an enclosure called a seed, which develops while on the parent plant, and with fertilisation by means of pollen grains. Whereas other vascular plants, such as ferns, reproduce by means of spores and so need moisture to develop, some seed plants can survive and reproduce in extremely arid conditions.
Early seed plants are referred to as gymnosperms (naked seeds), as the seed embryo is not enclosed in a protective structure at pollination, with the pollen landing directly on the embryo. Four surviving groups remain widespread now, particularly the conifers, which are dominant trees in several biomes. The angiosperms, comprising the flowering plants, were the last major group of plants to appear, emerging from within the gymnosperms during the Jurassic and diversifying rapidly during the Cretaceous. These differ in that the seed embryo (angiosperm) is enclosed, so the pollen has to grow a tube to penetrate the protective seed coat; they are the predominant group of flora in most biomes today.

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Plant

Definition Aristotle divided all living things between plants (which generally do not move), and animals (which often are mobile to catch their food). In Linnaeus' system, these became the Kingdoms Vegetabilia (later Metaphyta or Plantae) and Animalia (also called Metazoa). Since then, it has become clear that the Plantae as originally defined included several unrelated groups, and the fungi and several groups of algae were removed to new kingdoms. However, these are still often considered plants in many contexts, both technical and popular. Indeed, an attempt to perfectly match "plant" with a single taxon is problematic, because for most people the term "plant" is only vaguely related to the phylogenic concepts on which modern taxonomy and systematics are based.
When the name Plantae or plants is applied to a specific taxon, it is usually referring to one of three concepts. From smallest to largest in inclusiveness, these three groupings are:
Land plants, also known as Embryophyta or Metaphyta. As the narrowest of plant categories, this is further delineated below. Green plants - also known as Viridiplantae, Viridiphyta or Chlorobionta - comprise the above Embryophytes, Charophyta (i.e., primitive stoneworts), and Chlorophyta (i.e., green algae such as sea lettuce). It is this clade which is mainly the subject of this article. Archaeplastida - also known as Plantae sensu lato, Plastida or Primoplantae - comprises the green plants above, as well as Rhodophyta (red algae) and Glaucophyta (simple glaucophyte algae). As the broadest plant clade, this comprises most of the eukaryotes that eons ago acquired their chloroplasts directly by engulfing cyanobacteria. Informally, other creatures that carry out photosynthesis are called plants as well, but they do not constitute a formal taxon and represent species that are not closely related to true plants. There are around 375,000 species of plants, and each year more are found and described by science.

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Morphology

The umbrella style flower of the Sarracenia genus. Flowering plants are heterosporangiate, producing two types of reproductive spores. The pollen (male spores) and ovules (female spores) are produced in different organs, but the typical flower is a bisporangiate strobilus in that it contains both organs.
A flower is regarded as a modified stem with shortened internodes and bearing, at its nodes, structures that may be highly modified leaves.[1] In essence, a flower structure forms on a modified shoot or axis with an apical meristem that does not grow continuously (growth is determinate). Flowers may be attached to the plant in a few ways. If the flower has no stem but forms in the axil of a leaf, it is called sessile. When one flower is produced, the stem holding the flower is called a peduncle. If the peduncle ends with groups of flowers, each stem that holds a flower is called a pedicel. The flowering stem forms a terminal end which is called the torus or receptacle. The parts of a flower are arranged in whorls on the torus. The four main parts or whorls (starting from the base of the flower or lowest node and working upwards) are as follows:
Calyx: the outer whorl of sepals; typically these are green, but are petal-like in some species. Corolla: the whorl of petals, which are usually thin, soft and colored to attract insects that help the process of pollination. Androecium (from Greek andros oikia: man's house): one or two whorls of stamens, each a filament topped by an anther where pollen is produced. Pollen contains the male gametes. Gynoecium (from Greek gynaikos oikia: woman's house): one or more pistils. The female reproductive organ is the carpel: this contains an ovary with ovules (which contain female gametes). A pistil may consist of a number of carpels merged together, in which case there is only one pistil to each flower, or of a single individual carpel (the flower is then called apocarpous). The sticky tip of the pistil, the stigma, is the receptor of pollen. The supportive stalk, the style becomes the pathway for pollen tubes to grow from pollen grains adhering to the stigma, to the ovules, carrying the reproductive material. Although the floral structure described above is considered the "typical" structural plan, plant species show a wide variety of modifications from this plan. These modifications have significance in the evolution of flowering plants and are used extensively by botanists to establish relationships among plant species. For example, the two subclasses of flowering plants may be distinguished by the number of floral organs in each whorl: dicotyledons typically having 4 or 5 organs (or a multiple of 4 or 5) in each whorl and monocotyledons having three or some multiple of three. The number of carpels in a compound pistil may be only two, or otherwise not related to the above generalization for monocots and dicots.
An example of a perfect flower, this Crateva religiosa flower has both stamens (outer ring) and a pistil (center).In the majority of species individual flowers have both pistils and stamens as described above. These flowers are described by botanists as being perfect, bisexual, or hermaphrodite. However, in some species of plants the flowers are imperfect or unisexual: having only either male (stamens) or female (pistil) parts. In the latter case, if an individual plant is either female or male the species is regarded as dioecious. However, where unisexual male and female flowers appear on the same plant, the species is considered monoecious.

Additional discussions on floral modifications from the basic plan are presented in the articles on each of the basic parts of the flower. In those species that have more than one flower on an axis—so-called composite flowers—the collection of flowers is termed an inflorescence; this term can also refer to the specific arrangements of flowers on a stem. In this regard, care must be exercised in considering what a ‘‘flower’’ is. In botanical terminology, a single daisy or sunflower for example, is not a flower but a flower head—an inflorescence composed of numerous tiny flowers (sometimes called florets). Each of these flowers may be anatomically as described above. Many flowers have a symmetry, if the perianth is bisected through the central axis from any point, symmetrical halves are produced—the flower is called regular or actinomorphic, e.g. rose or trillium. When flowers are bisected and produce only one line that produces symmetrical halves the flower is said to be irregular or zygomorphic. e.g. snapdragon or most orchids.

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Symbolism

Lilies are often used to denote life or resurrection Flowers inspire decorative motifs Flowers are common subjects of still lifes, such as this one by Ambrosius Bosschaert the Elder Chinese Jade ornament with flower design, Jin Dynasty (1115-1234 AD),
Shanghai Museum. Flowers are beloved for their various fragrances Many flowers have important symbolic meanings in Western culture. The practice of assigning meanings to flowers is known as floriography. Some of the more common examples include:
Red roses are given as a symbol of love, beauty, and passion. Poppies are a symbol of consolation in time of death. In the UK, Australia and Canada, red poppies are worn to commemorate soldiers who have died in times of war. Irises/Lily are used in burials as a symbol referring to "resurrection/life". It is also associated with stars (sun) and its petals blooming/shining. Daisies are a symbol of innocence. Flowers within art are also representative of the female genitalia, as seen in the works of artists such as Georgia O'Keefe, Imogen Cunningham, Veronica Ruiz de Velasco, and Judy Chicago, and in fact in Asian and western classical art. Many cultures around the world have a marked tendency to associate flowers with femininity.
The great variety of delicate and beautiful flowers has inspired the works of numerous poets, especially from the 18th-19th century Romantic era. Famous examples include William Wordsworth's I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud and William Blake's Ah! Sun-Flower.
Because of their varied and colorful appearance, flowers have long been a favorite subject of visual artists as well. Some of the most celebrated paintings from well-known painters are of flowers, such as Van Gogh's sunflowers series or Monet's water lilies. Flowers are also dried, freeze dried and pressed in order to create permanent, three-dimensional pieces of flower art.
The Roman goddess of flowers, gardens, and the season of Spring is Flora. The Greek goddess of spring, flowers and nature is Chloris.
In Hindu mythology, flowers have a significant status. Vishnu, one of the three major gods in the Hindu system, is often depicted standing straight on a lotus flower. Apart from the association with Vishnu, the Hindu tradition also considers the lotus to have spiritual significance. For example, it figures in the Hindu stories of creation

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Algae

Most algae are no longer classified within the Kingdom Plantae; they are now included among the protists.[2][3] The algae comprise several different groups of organisms that produce energy through photosynthesis,
each of which arose independently from separate non-photosynthetic ancestors. Most conspicuous among the algae are the seaweeds, multicellular algae that may roughly resemble terrestrial plants, but are classified among the green, red, and brown algae. Each of these algal groups also includes various microscopic and single-celled organisms.
Only two groups of algae are considered close relatives of land plants (embryophytes). The first of these groups is the Charophyta (desmids and stoneworts), from which the embryophytes developed.[4][5][6] The sister group to the combined embryophytes and charophytes is the other group of green algae (Chlorophyta), and this more inclusive group is collectively referred to as the green plants or Viridiplantae. The Kingdom Plantae is often taken to mean this monophyletic grouping. With a few exceptions among the green algae, all such forms have cell walls containing cellulose, have chloroplasts containing chlorophylls a and b, and store food in the form of starch. They undergo closed mitosis without centrioles, and typically have mitochondria with flat cristae.
The chloroplasts of green plants are surrounded by two membranes, suggesting they originated directly from endosymbiotic cyanobacteria. The same is true of two additional groups of algae: the Rhodophyta (red algae) and Glaucophyta. All three groups together are generally believed to have a common origin, and so are classified together in the taxon Archaeplastida. In contrast, most other algae (e.g. heterokonts, haptophytes, dinoflagellates, and euglenids) have chloroplasts with three or four surrounding membranes. They are not close relatives of the green plants, presumably acquiring chloroplasts separately from ingested or symbiotic green and red algae.

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ASESORÍAS

Con compras de material vegetal superiores a us$ 8000 la asesoría es gratuita, el cliente solo deberá pagar los gastos de transporte y viáticos del asesor.

En caso de contratar únicamente el servicio de asesoría, este tiene un valor de us $ 400 diarios mas gastos de transporte y viáticos
La asesoría abarca todos los procesos productivos y de mercadeo, desde el analizar y escoger las especies que se deben sembrar según el tipo de explotación y mercado objetivo hasta los procesos de postcosecha y empaque.

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THE INGREDIENTS FOR LIFE

1) Liquid water 2) Chemical building blocks like carbon, oxygen, hydrogen and nitrogen3) An energy sourceIn one corner of the Solar System, life abounds.
From the frozen lakes in Antarctica to the boiling ocean-floor springs of the Pacific, planet Earth is teeming with life. But these diverse locations all share some common ground. They all contain the essential ingredients needed to create life.1) Liquid waterBiologists studying primitive organisms all agree on one thing. Liquid water is absolutely essential for life to evolve and survive. The search for life on other worlds is a search for places where water can exist in liquid form. But why is water so precious? For life to evolve, simple chemicals must combine to form more complex ones. Many chemicals dissolve in water allowing them to mix together and react Liquid water is the right temperature for chemical reactions to happen Many chemicals have parts which are attracted to water and parts which are repelled by it. These forces also help reactions happen 2) Chemical building blocksCarbon is important because of its ability to form long chain-like molecules. Carbon chains form the backbone of organic molecules. Hydrogen and oxygen can both bond with carbon in lots of different ways. These two elements make up water molecules. So if water is present, hydrogen and oxygen will already be there. Like hydrogen and oxygen, nitrogen can also combine with carbon in lots of different ways. Large molecules made from carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen also tend to be very stable. Sulphur, phosphorus, sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium, manganese, iron, cobalt, copper and zinc are all needed for life as we know it on Earth.3) An energy source
All chemical reactions need an energy source to drive them.
On Earth, most primitive animals and plants get their energy by absorbing ultra-violet light from the Sun. This is called 'photosynthesis'. Humans and other animals get their energy by eating plants, or other animals. So all animals ultimately rely on energy from the Sun to live.Stage 2: combining these ingredients to make lifeLife finds a wayUntil recently, it was thought that life couldn't exist anywhere that was shaded from the Sun's light. However, scientists have recently discovered organisms living deep beneath the ocean. These organisms absorb energy directly from chemicals in the water around them.

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