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Posts Tagged "flower"

Anecdotes from the Archive

Stop and Smell the Attar: Rose Oil Extraction in Bulgaria and France

Gatherin roses in Bulgaria

If you’ve been near a garden lately, chances are your nose has picked up on the unmistakable scent of the roses in full-bloom in many places right now. The sight of the rose certainly holds a great amount of symbolic meaning in cultures throughout the world, though it can be argued that smell is even [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Critically Endangered Plant with Brilliant Purple Flowers Discovered in Hawaii

Cyanea konahuanuiensis

Here’s the crazy thing about living in Hawaii: Even though the islands are home to more than 18,000 unique species that live nowhere else on Earth, the people of Hawaii rarely see those native plants and animals. In no small part, that’s because Hawaii is the site of an ongoing extinction crisis. Thousands of species [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Flower Power: Collaboration Keeps Rare Plant off the Endangered Species List

Georgia aster

Fifteen years ago the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) acknowledged that a rare plant called the Georgia aster (Symphyotrichum georgianum) deserved and needed protection under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Unfortunately, a lot of other species also needed protection—some of them much more urgently. As such, the Georgia aster was determined to be a [...]

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Extinction Countdown

World’s smallest water lily saved from extinction

Nymphaea thermarum, world

Two years ago, the world’s smallest water lily, a plant known as Nymphaea thermarum whose pads reach only one centimeter in diameter, disappeared from its only habitat, a few square meters near a hot spring in Mashyuza, Rwanda. Local agriculture had drained the spring of most of its water, and as a result, the water [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Rare British orchid gets police protection from overzealous collectors

the lady

Police protection for a plant? It makes sense if it’s one of the last wild examples of its species and collectors are willing to pay rhino horn–level prices for its flowers. That’s the situation for the lady’s slipper orchid (Cypripedium calceolus). Just a few of the wildflowers remain in Britain following decades of habitat loss [...]

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A Rose Is a Rose, Until It Isn’t: 5 Reasons Plant DNA Is Totally Crazy


You may not give your houseplants enough credit. What looks like an innocent philodendron gathering dust may actually be a riddle wrapped in a mystery shrouded in potting soil…at least genetically. Turns out plants have some interesting genetic quirks that keep geneticists guessing. As challenges in finding gene-sequencing shortcuts, called barcodes, have made clear, deciphering plant [...]

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