TAG: Plants

EPA Receives Protests Over Plant Labeling – and Listens

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If you’ve been keeping up with current news concerning the staggering rate of bee die-offs (or viewed Blackle’s recent post on the matter), you’ll be well aware the detrimental impact of insecticides on the global bee population. In addition to the decline of bee populations, this month’s coverage of insecticide-treated “bee friendly” plants from Home Depot and other garden centers has invoked powerful responses from environmentalists and concerned consumers alike. The insecticides used on these plants were neonicotinoids, a class of pesticides proven as harmful to pollinators and the food supply. After months of neglecting to respond to public concern,… read more

Power To The Plants!

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Despite the importance humans place on our own existence, there’s another life-form that eclipses our presence on the planet: the humble plant! From an environmental education perspective, it’s critical that we promote increased awareness of and appreciation for the value of plants within the broader spectrum of biodiversity. Plants are the primary life on Earth. Everything else depends upon them to survive. From terrestrial plants to aquatic plants, the green kingdom is profoundly important to the health and well-being of the planet’s biodiversity. Whilst many plants are not particularly glamorous, their function through photosynthesis is essential; indeed, Earth offers no… read more

“Bee Safe” Plants Found to Contain Harmful Insecticides

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Despite the efforts of home gardeners to grow plants in a manner that is safe for bee,  many gardeners are actually filling their yards with deadly insecticides. Bee die-off rates have reached staggering proportions within recent years. Last winter, beekeepers reported a loss of 40-90% of their bees. There are a few known causes contributing to this death toll, from commercial insecticide use to Colony Collapse disorder, a phenomenon discovered in France in the 1990’s, in which the adult bees mysteriously abandon the hive, leaving even their queens behind. Now it seems some of the problem is coming from the… read more

The Miracle Of Life

The Miracle of Life

Nature is a powerful creative force. You’d be hard-pressed to identify any invention greater than the miraculous creation of all life on the planet! Yet in promoting (and conserving) biodiversity, are our priorities the same as those that nature itself might identify if given the opportunity and voice? The term “biodiversity” basically refers to the enormous variety of life on Earth. It is the totality of life-forms, plants and animals and micro-organisms alike. As environmental educators sharing knowledge about biodiversity, we need to communicate the value(s) of biodiversity in its own right. We also need to understand and communicate how different… read more

Glowing Plants For Your Home

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A new sustainable energy project on the crowd-funding website Kickstarter just received their funding goal. The project is a natural lighting plant for your home, aka awesome glowing plants. Check out the video below to learn more and watch an interview with the creators of the project. Have a thought? Share it in the comments below.

The Edible Wild

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Whether you wish to expand your palette with more adventurous fare or simply want to be informed in case you should encounter a period spent with limited resources, foraging the wilderness for subsistence can be an enlightening and perhaps even life-saving experience. But first, you must know which plants are suitable sources of nutrition and which to avoid. While there are a variety of fungi and other edible plants dotting forests and sometimes your own yard, their credentials are extensive, and it is all too easy to mistake a poisonous species for a harmless one. Thus, we shall focus our… read more

Green Anxiety Therapy

Green Anxiety Therapy

Green spaces are places with natural features, such as trees, plants, flowers, and grass. Research suggests that they are critical not only to the sustainability of our environment and by extension, our physical health, but also to our mental health. Recent research has shown that the prevalence rates of anxiety disorders and depression are significantly lower in areas where 90% of the space is green than in 10% green areas. It’s not known for sure how green space exerts its anti-anxiety and anti-depressive effects, though opportunities to engage in recreation, exercise out in the fresh air, socialize, and relax in… read more

Plants Perform Arithmetic To Survive

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An intriguing discovery was made just the other day in the field of biology in regards to how plants function during the evening. Plants have the ability to make precise, and complex, mathematical solutions in order to ensure they have enough food to last the evening until the next day. Even if the night ends up coming sooner than the plants had calculated, such as an overcast evening, certain phases of the moon, etc, they can still prepare for the next day. In simple terms, the plants perform arithmetic division to help them decide how to use their starch resources… read more

Synthetic Biology: Our New Best Friend

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Plants offer an amalgamation of solutions to problems we face everyday, including depleting oxygen levels, oil spills, and food shortages. Birger Lindberg Moller, a research biologist who hails from the University of Copenhagen, suggests that synthetic biology can become our “new best friend” when it comes to going green. Check out his TED Talk below to learn more about his important research.

Fashions Inspired By Nature

Fashions Inspired By Nature

Environmental artist, Anni Rapinoja, has created some attention-grabbing works. Among her collections are a series titled Wardrobe of Nature. This assemblage of art meets attire takes on clothing in a way that gently mocks the synthetic and commercially mass produced for profit frocks. The shapes of each piece are reminders that humans are part of the natural world, but also as a concept that has been lost due to modernization that focuses mostly on monetary goals. One of the intentions of this collection is to remind that we need a natural balance that should also be mimicked throughout, and not… read more