Tag: Flowers and Plants

How Did Plants Conquer Land? These Humble Algae Hold Clues

If you’ve ever noticed a slimy film of algae on a rock, chances are you didn’t pay it much attention. But some of these overlooked species hold clues to one of the greatest mysteries of evolution, scientists have found: how plants arrived on land. On Thursday, researchers published the genomes of two algae that are […]

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How Much Would You Pay for a Houseplant?

MIAMI — They came armed with totes, trash bags, empty strollers and collapsible nylon wagons. They came with wish lists and whispers of their “unicorns,” whose Latin names sounded like incantations: adansonii, patriciae, obliqua. Some of them traveled by airplane to get here. Others, in moving trucks. Because one does not walk into the 42nd […]

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Stalking the Endangered Wax Palm

In 1991 Rodrigo Bernal, a botanist who specializes in palms, was driving into the Tochecito River Basin, a secluded mountain canyon in central Colombia, when he was seized by a sense of foreboding. Two palm experts were in the car with Dr. Bernal: his late wife, the botanist Gloria Galeano, who worked alongside him at […]

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How a Rooftop Meadow of Bees and Butterflies Shows N.Y.C.’s Future

Tall grasses glow in the afternoon sunlight. The last bees and butterflies of the season hover over goldenrod and asters. Silver orbs that look like alien spacecrafts shimmer nearby. The wild-looking meadow is not in a rural outpost, but sandwiched between a sewage plant — the orbs are the tanks — and a parking lot […]

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The Green Revolution Spreading Across Our Rooftops

When David Michaels moved to Chicago this year, he chose the Emme apartment building in part because of the third-floor green roof, which has a lawn, an area for grilling, fire pits and a 3,000-square-foot vegetable garden. “The green space was a huge factor in choosing this apartment,” Mr. Michaels said. “My wife and I […]

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Three Billion Canaries in the Coal Mine

NASHVILLE — During the nearly quarter-century that my family has lived in this house, the changes in our neighborhood have become increasingly apparent: fewer trees and wildflowers, fewer bees and butterflies and grasshoppers, fewer tree frogs and songbirds. The vast majority of Tennessee is still rural, and for years I told myself that such changes […]

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The Honest Beauty of Wild Grasses

SAY THE WORD “grass” and you picture not a lone blade but a mass undulation. It is for all practical purposes uncountable, a tease of the infinite. More than 10,000 species compose Poaceae, the family of grass, and together they cover around 40 percent of the earth’s lands (outside of Greenland and Antarctica). Traders and […]

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How to Cook a Meal (Almost) Entirely Out of Flowers

How do you create a flower-centric restaurant that doesn’t feel like a bridal shower? If you’re Alessandra and Mario De Benedetti, you ask your good friend, the artist and writer Leanne Shapton, to paint your walls with a geometric watercolor mural, and you ask Elizabeth Roberts, the architect known for her light-filled, thoughtfully reworked Brooklyn […]

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In Montauk, a Garden Runs Delightfully Amok

THE GRASS THAT blankets the only sizable expanse of lawn in Robin Standefer and Stephen Alesch’s two-acre Montauk garden is about a hand’s width high and grows in lush whorls, like the coat of an English cocker spaniel. Standefer and Alesch — who in 2002 founded the New York-based design studio Roman and Williams (perhaps […]

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Why Does Everything Smell, So Peacefully, of Lavender?

Not long ago Erin Wexstten, the 35-year-old founder of Oxalis Apothecary, a plant-based skin care brand, ticked off all the ways she uses lavender in her life. “I personally have lavender everywhere,” she said. “Hand soap, dish soap. I have sachets you stick in the drawer. It makes the underwear smell nice. Dried bunches. They […]

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How to Arrange Flowers for an Unexpected, Wild-Looking Table

The Brooklyn-based artist Joshua Werber is best known for his fantastical floral headpieces: wearable creations fashioned from real botanicals. His designs have appeared in several fashion magazines — including in the pages of T — and on celebrities such as Rihanna. Working mostly from a 150-square-foot room in a live-work space he shares with his […]

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The Studio Delivering Exotic, Color-Coded Flowers

To simply call Buunch a flower delivery service would be something of an understatement. The two-month-old offshoot of the floral events studio L’Atelier Rouge does, in fact, offer a streamlined selection of color-coordinated arrangements for delivery throughout New York City. But Buunch’s imaginative, effervescent bouquets — which pair unconventional flower selections with shapely, colorful vases […]

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The New Threat to Endangered Species? The Trump Administration

Endangered species come on lists. But lists obscure relationships. What can it mean that a few mussels, some snails we’ve never heard of, obscure crayfish in marginal headwaters and some island-confined songbirds are vanishing? Some 1,650 species of animals and plants in the United States are listed under federal law as endangered or threatened. But […]

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This Carnivorous Plant Invaded New York. That May Be Its Only Hope.

BIG POND, N.Y. — Across their kayaks, the three men passed the green shoot back and forth. Occasionally, one of them would cradle it in one palm and bring a hand lens to it with the other, inspecting the carnivorous plant that was their bounty. By day’s end, the group — Seth Cunningham and Michael […]

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Watch This Plant Shoot Its Seeds Like Spiraling Footballs

Squeeze tightly on a watermelon seed between two of your fingers, and it’ll shoot out and fly through the air, as generations of delighted children have discovered. The Chinese witch hazel plant does the same thing. CreditCreditBy Poppinga Et Al. Plants, like some animals, want to send their offspring far out into the wider world. […]

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A Designer Who Makes Impossibly Lifelike Flowers From Everyday Materials

In the designer Sourabh Gupta’s studio, in a nondescript apartment building in East Harlem, flowers bloom on nearly every surface. Towers of hollyhock animate one corner with their showy hot-pink-and-white blossoms. On a nearby bookshelf, pale lady’s slippers, Carolina roses and strawberry buds spring from earthenware pots. Gupta moves about gently tending to his nursery […]

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During a Solar Eclipse, What Are Plants Doing?

As the total solar eclipse crosses South America on Tuesday, it won’t just be people oohing and ahhing as the sun is blotted out. Other living things will have their own responses, too — some of which we are just beginning to understand. As some scientists used the Great American Eclipse in August 2017 to […]

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