Berry Go Round in August.

Welcome to the August 2014 edition of Berry Go Round!

Kinnikinnick Berries  (Arctostaphylos spp.) 27 August, 2014

Kinnikinnick Berries (Arctostaphylos sp.) 27 August, 2014, Halfmoon Lake Natural Area.

You may well ask, ” Why is a bug-biased macro photography blog hosting a botanical blog carnival?” (Say that quickly 5 times!)

While my interest is bugs, my background is in horticulture and gardening. The plant world is (almost) as fascinating as the bug world, so when I saw that Berry Go Round was short of hosts for the summer, I decided to offer Splendour Awaits as the host site. After all, we know that plants and bugs get along great! (Said the ant to the aphid…)

I’ll start off with some of the bug-free submissions…

  • Can we grow plants on the moon? Well, not without a lot of help.  Emma the Gardener looks at the science around the possibilities at Growing plants in lunar soil.
  • And staying on the astronomical theme for just one moment, please ask yourself, “Why do they do that?” These massive annuals have attracted artists for generations, and now the Sarah Shailes tells us more about why Sunflowers are turning heads.
  • Tim Havenith tells us of the history and folklore of the apple. And, if the mere suggestion of apples has you yearning  to sink your teeth into crisp, juicy flesh, first visit Anatomy of an apple – A Short Study to find out what just what an ‘enlarged hypanthium‘ is, and what it can do to you!
  • For plants, ESA protection is applicable only on federal land.  So while that means any plant on private land is subject to the whims of the land owner, plants on federal land get the royal  federal treatment! In the Colorado Butterfly Plant and the US Air Force, Hollis Marriott gives us an overview on the ups and downs of this protected pocket of plants.
  • Most people know that almost all dinosaurs were wiped-out in a massive cataclysmic event 66 million years ago, but few think of the effect it had on other lineages of life. In Planting the Cenozoic Garden, Brian Switek looks at how fossilized pollen gives us clues to how plants did–and didn’t–survive the Earth’s fifth mass extinction.

Of course, this blog is bug-centric, so what can I contribute to the Berry Go Round?

Yellow-jacket holds berry in high regard...

Yellow-jacket holds berry in high regard…  Vaccinium myrtilloides (Common Blueberry) 27 August, 2014, Halfmoon Lake Natural Area

After hours of searching (Honestly? I stole them off  Malcolm at Morsels for the Mind!) I managed to dig up a few blog posts which featured plant/bug relationships…

  • Sun grown coffee can produce up to 3 times more crop than shade grown coffee, however it is considered less environmentally sustainable due to the practices involved in raising it. Organic coffee is usually shade grown, where the plants grow under a canopy of trees which allows natural interactions to help protect the plants. See the how shade and ants help provide us with a more sustainable cup of coffee in Nsikan Akpan’s article, Feisty Ants and Coffee Plants.
  • Five years ago, coconut palms started dying in the Philippines. The culprit was thought to be Aspidiotus destructor, a scale insect already known to cause damage to palms in Indonesia.  Author Nsikan Akpan again, on how the real Killer bug behind coconut plague was identified, and which counter-tactic is being used to halt the destruction.

Ending this edition of Berry-go-round…

  • We know about plant galls and the insects that create them, but have you ever heard of jumping galls? See what’s going on under Californian oak trees in by Michael Marshall’s article in The secret hop of the Californian flea seed.

Thanks everyone for participating! See you at the September edition of Berry Go Round at Mostly Science.

This entry was posted in Berry Go Round, Blog Link, Blog Roundup, Bugs, photography, Science, Summer and tagged , , , , , , , .

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