hyggehaven

biodiverseed:

Scarification (botany): The process of damaging a tough seed coating to hasten germination. It can be accomplished with thermal stress, extended soaking, abrasion, or blunt force.

Many seeds will remain dormant for dozens of years without some form of scarification, because the seed coating forms a barrier that is impervious to both water and gasses, hermetically sealing the embryo.

I am using a small three-sided file to penetrate the tough seed coats of these Canna seeds from kihaku-gato (after failing with a hammer and a small knife). These seeds are so hard, that in India, they have been used as shot! After many strokes of the sharp edge of the file, the white endosperm peeks through.

#garden science #scarification #germination

hyggehaven

botanybecca:

This is driving me mad!

So ginkgos have separate male and female plants, i.e. they are dioecious. This is thought to be in order to prevent self pollination and self fertilisation, thereby guaranteeing that the offspring will be genetically different to the parent plants. 

BUT the ginkgo is a “fossil plant”, and it’s a poster child for evolutionary stasis. It’s barely changed over millions of years of evolution.

WHY has is remained so conserved over evolutionary time despite the genetic variation that should arise from it being dioecious?? 

In the book “Ginkgo” by Peter Crane, some explanations are offered:

1. Ginkgo has tracked the same environmental conditions for more than 200 million years.

2. In spite of genetic variation, the same form has been maintained by stabilising selection.

3. Or there is some kind of developmental constraint that has kept ginkgo almost completely unchanged for a long period of time. 

But I’m not fully satisfied by these explanations and can’t find any literature on the subject. Can anyone help me out?? 

(first image from Zhou, Z.-Y. & Zhang, B.-L. Palaeontographica B 211, 113–133 (1989).

second image from wikipedia)

wenxuejia

burntcandycorn:

littlebluecaboose:

cosmictuesdays:

frenchie-fries:

vergess:

boltonsrepairshop:

PSA - PLEASE READ AND SPREAD HE WORD!!!

IF YOU SEE THIS PLANT AT ALL, DO NOT TOUCH IT!!!

Giant hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum) is an invasive herb in the carrot family which was originally brought to North America from Asia and has since become established in the New England, Mid-Atlantic, and Northwest regions of the United States. Giant hogweed grows along streams and rivers and in fields, forests, yards and roadsides, and a giant hogweed plant can reach 14 feet or more in height with compound leaves up to 5 feet in width.

Giant Hogweed sap contains toxic chemicals known as Furanocoumarins. When these chemicals come into contact with the skin and are exposed to sunlight, they cause a condition called Phytophotodermatitis, a reddening of the skin often followed by severe blistering and burns. These injuries can last for several months, and even after they have subsided the affected areas of skin can remain sensitive to light for years. Furanocoumarins are also carcinogenic and teratogenic, meaning they can cause cancer and birth defects. The sap can also cause temporary (or even permanent) blindness if introduced into the eyes.

If someone comes into physical contact with Giant Hogweed, the following steps should be taken:
  • Wash the affected area thoroughly with soap and COLD water as soon as possible.
  • Keep the exposed area away from sunlight for 48 hours.
  • If Hogweed sap gets into the eyes, rinse them with water and wear sunglasses.
  • See a doctor if any sign of reaction sets in.
If a reaction occurs, the early application of topical steroids may lessen the severity of the reaction and ease the discomfort. The affected area of skin may remain sensitive to sunlight for a few years, so applying sun block and keeping the affected area shielded from the sun whenever possible are sensible precautions
PLEASE, DO NOT JUST READ AND SCROLL! THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT AND POTENTIALLY LIFE-SAVING INFORMATION!!!

Extra note: if you live in Oregon, New Jersey, Michigan or New York and see one of these, call your state’s department of agriculture to report it, and trained professionals will come kill it before it can produce seeds and spread.

Frankly, if you see one in general, probably call your DOA and see if there’s a program in place.

Do not burn it, because the smoke will give you the same reaction.

If for some ungodly reason there isn’t a professional who can handle it for you (and please, please use a professional), the DOA of New York has [this guide] for how to deal with it yourself.

OH MY FUCK I HAVE THESE IN MY BACKYARD.

Fucking invasives. Signal boost.

Re-reblogging because I checked Snopes, and not only is this shit true, but the text on this is pretty much the same as it is there! Stay safe, kiddos.

According to the US Department of Agriculture, these are currently the states and provinces in North America where Giant Hogweed is present. Even if your state/province is “clear” that doesn’t mean that it is not there. If you see Giant Hogweed in your yard or anywhere please call your DOA! This stuff is mad deadly!

[Image Source]