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Your wildflower search engine.

Search for wildflowers by location, color, flower shape, flower size and time of blooming. 3,126 plants indexed. This web site helps those of us with limited knowledge of botany to identify flowering plants that are found outside of gardens. This help is provided by presenting you with small images of plants. You can use a number of search techniques to get to the images that are most likely the plant you are looking for. When you click on a plant image the program shows you links to plant descriptions and more plant images. The site has about 5 ways of searching for a plant. You can use these searches in any combination. Some searches eliminate some plants from consideration. Most searches give a "score" to each plant depending on how well the plant matches the search criteria. The plants with the highest score are displayed at the top of the results. Click here for Instructions. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Jun 5, 2013 - 21 comments

One genome, two plants

Mosses Make Two Different Plants From the Same Genome, and a Single Gene Can Make the Difference
One of the most astonishing secrets in biology is this: every plant you see makes two different plants from the same genome. And, scientists recently reported, a single gene from an ancient, powerful lineage can make the difference.

posted by Joe in Australia on May 12, 2013 - 24 comments

So this is what it's like to be eaten by a plant

How would you like to go on a mindbending 3D journey into the devouring maws of four different carnivorous plants? [more inside]
posted by prize bull octorok on Mar 29, 2013 - 12 comments

Arboreal Art in Nature

"Magnificent and Weird Trees" Also see, Living, Growing Architecture.
posted by zarq on Jul 10, 2011 - 18 comments

Wild plants of Japan

Various Japanese plants (and fungi) spring to life in Omni/ScienceNet's "Action Plant" series of time-lapse videos shot in Kōchi prefecture.
posted by gman on Nov 9, 2010 - 3 comments

plants in sanskrit poetry

Seasonal Poetry in Sanskrit : The blog Sanskrit Literature has been running an excellent series on plants that appear in sanskrit poetry. Some examples : Jasmine (malati), Lotuses and Water Lilies, Mango.
posted by dhruva on Nov 2, 2010 - 6 comments

Lois, you're a tease. And you stink.

During the past 4 days, the Cockrell Butterfly Center at the Houston Museum of Natural Science has stayed open 24 hours to accommodate the record crowds filing into the museum at all hours. Why? A rare Amorphophallus titanium, aka “Corpse Flower,” named Lois is finally about to bloom. Now, Lois is not your average, run-of-the-mill stinky plant. Only 28 Corpse Flowers have bloomed in the US, so Lois has become a local celebrity with her own blog, Flickr feed, live webcam and cupcakes. She even has her own playlist, with songs such as “That Smell” by Lynyrd Skynrd, “I’m Comin’ Out” by Diana Ross and the classic “Smelly Cat” by Phoebe from Friends. And like any trendy Corpse Flower, Lois also has her own Twitter account. She's also a bit of a diva. Yet despite predictions, Lois still hasn't bloomed as of Wednesday morning. In response, Lois makes excuses, bad jokes, complaints and snarky comments.
posted by yeoja on Jul 14, 2010 - 30 comments

Expand Your Plant Knowledge

Whether you're a casual cultivator or gardening guru, PlantCare.com has a wealth of information about the care and feeding of indoor and outdoor plants. You can search the extensive plant database to find information on thousands of house plants, participate in and discuss your favorite gardening topics in the plant forum, and expand your plant knowledge with hundreds of gardening tips and guides.
posted by netbros on Feb 25, 2009 - 10 comments

Language, biodiversity, and a story of salvation

Don Berto’s Garden. "The plants of the ancient Maya whisper their secrets to those who speak a shared language."
posted by homunculus on Oct 28, 2007 - 7 comments

plants and numbers

The Mathematical Lives of Plants "Scientists have puzzled over this pattern of plant growth for hundreds of years. Why would plants prefer the golden angle to any other? And how can plants possibly "know" anything about Fibonacci numbers?"
posted by dhruva on May 7, 2007 - 31 comments

Check out these slides because they are pretty and neat

The architecture of plant tissue. Very cool stained slides of various plant cells. [via Pruned]
posted by billysumday on Apr 14, 2006 - 4 comments

Plants That Kill

Beware, O unsuspecting traveler; for the path you take shall surely lead to your doom. The Galleria Carnivora: A celebration of plants that kill. Also, learn how to cultivate your own Audreys with the help of the International Carnivorous Plant Society (and check out their Members Gallery as well).
posted by Gator on Feb 9, 2006 - 14 comments

Indonesia - new species discovered

"Lost World" found in Indonesian Papua (with audio)
posted by Protocols of the Elders of Awesome on Feb 7, 2006 - 21 comments

wooden library

A xylothek is literally a library of wood, a collection of book-like boxes made from trees--the wood and bark with the seeds, leaves, flowers, fruit--or illustrations of the soft parts (site in German), inside.
posted by dhruva on Nov 9, 2005 - 29 comments

On-line Natural History

Wayne's World (an unfortunate name for a great website) is "An On-line Textbook of Natural History." I went looking for information on Vanilla, which I knew is the only commercial food product of an orchid, but which I didn't know is hand-pollinated, and found information on so much more. There are several extensive courses available on basic biology and botany, a huge section on chemicals in plants and animals, and tons of fun stuff like "The Truth about Cauliflory" and "Bat-Pollinated Flowers Of The Calabash & Sausage Tree." The index is extensive and covers everything from "Absinthe: An Herb That May Have Poisoned Vincent van Gogh" to "Ziricote: Beautiful Caribbean Hardwood In The Borage Family."
posted by OmieWise on Aug 4, 2005 - 10 comments

UBC Botanical Garden

News from the world of plants by way of the University of British Columbia Botanical Garden weblog. Beauty in science by way of the photo of the day.
posted by plep on Jun 2, 2005 - 5 comments

Patenting Genes

Monsanto Wins Fight to Control Plant The Canadian Supreme court sets international precedent by ruling that since Monsanto holds a patent on a gene, it can control the use of the plant. So does this mean that in the future that an engineered human gene could be patented, and therefore if you receive this gene you will have to make royalty payments? And if you renege on paying can they repo the gene?
posted by batboy on May 21, 2004 - 34 comments

Rare Botany Books

The Missouri Botanical Garden Library has scanned and posted 46 volumes of its rare book collection. 16,133 pages and 2,050 beautiful illustrations are currently available.
As an example, see this engraving of a foxglove by Pierre Vallet from 1608.
posted by thatwhichfalls on Dec 22, 2003 - 7 comments

Plants in motion

Plants in motion is a comprehensive archive of time-lapse movies (Quicktime format) of plants germinating and growing, flowers opening, tropic responses and circadian movements. Some of the video is quite eerie. The plants really seem...erm...alive... The site also has a guide to making your own time-lapse film.
posted by Jimbob on Oct 19, 2003 - 14 comments

Record Breaking Plants

Botanical Record-Breakers - learn about the world's most poisonous plants, the fastest growing, the most painful, the oldest, the ongoing debate about the largest, and much more. Also discussed is the rare coconut pearl - botanical jewel, or hoax?
posted by Jimbob on Oct 2, 2003 - 8 comments

Enough with humans. Let the flowers talk.

Katinka Matson's scanned flower art : technology lets the flowers speak. "...imagine a painter who could, like Vermeer, capture the quality of light that a camera can, but with the color of paints. That is what a scanner gives you.... In her flowers one can see every microscopic dew drop, leaf vein, and particle of pollen—in satisfying rich pigmented color....." (scroll down for images)
posted by troutfishing on Jun 24, 2003 - 16 comments

Shapely Trees

The delicate art of topiary, or "cutting trees into weird shapes". The people. The history. The outstanding. The bizarre, and the phallic (completely SFW). I grew up with a similar tree to the last one on my street, although ours had...uhugm... a knob on top; I believe the gardener responsible was too short to trim above a certain level...
posted by Jimbob on Jun 5, 2003 - 10 comments

Antique Botanical Prints

Antique Botanical Prints from Panteek, and many more.
posted by hama7 on May 23, 2003 - 3 comments

The Dancing Plant

The Dancing Plant -- Darwin was obsessed by it, although even he never trained his weedy Asian shrub to twitch its leaves to the sound of music. But in a small town in northern Thailand ... [Some people may experience a time-delay ad]
posted by titboy on Mar 12, 2003 - 13 comments

"Feeeeed Me!"

"Feeeeed Me!" Although the physical reality of this "museum" seems a bit sketchy, you simply have to love lush color photos of carniverous plants. I mean c'mon! Audrey II would be proud.
posted by jeremias on Mar 4, 2002 - 2 comments

NASA to send glow-in-the-dark plants to Mars.

NASA to send glow-in-the-dark plants to Mars. While they wait and search for native life form, NASA, in conjunction with Ferl Lab of University of Florida, is sending GM plants that would report back via their glow into the Red Planet. The good doctor has sent his babies into the heavens before.
posted by tamim on May 7, 2001 - 4 comments

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