Blog Archives

Call for Submissions: Backyard Plants to Save the Planet

Hello friends and fellow bloggers!

We’re hosting the May edition of Berry Go Round here and we want your articles. What better time to talk about important backyard plants than first thing this spring? We realize that calling it “Backyard Plants to Save the Planet” might be a lofty title, but the plain truth is that backyard gardeners have an incredible amount of power in the race to support failing populations of native birds, insects, and more. We can also support ourselves and reduce our dependence on the industrial food system by growing some of our own food, even if it’s just a little!

We want to focus on plants and projects that are accessible to the average gardener. The more we know, the more we can do!

Get creative and send us up to 3 of your articles (start writing!) on the following topics by posting a link in the comments section or tweeting it to us @RoamngNaturalst. Deadline is April 30th!

1. Plants that support reptiles/amphibians in your backyard.
2. Plants that support mammals in your backyard.
3. Plants that support native birds in your backyard.
4. Plants that support beneficial insects and especially pollinators in your backyard.
5. Plants you can eat that will contribute to reducing dependence on food system.
6. Plants that support the soil in your backyard.
7. Plants that support water conservation and purifying in your backyard.

Your article will be linked in the final post, published towards the end of May, and will be available for lots of new readers to see. We hope you’ll join us!

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Nature News & Tweets for December

So, since only the primitive portion of my brain (responsible for breathing and peeing in a private facility rather than on the floor) is functioning from four days of poor nutrition and an awful lot of Netflix Instant, I thought I’d share some neato things going on in the world of.. well. The world.

A 400,000 year old tooth was discovered in Israel. One doc says “HUMAN!”, another says “Probably not, you over-zealous sonofabitch.” Typical. (According to the article, the oldest Homo sapiens tooth discovered so far is half that old so if it IS human, well, it’s a big deal.) I’d like to suggest that for just a few minutes, sit back and picture what it would be like to have another HOMINID SPECIES (not another race, culture, or other kind of group) wandering around. Another hominid species. Hominid. Mind-blowing.

Tickling may have some evolutionary benefit. Or at least, it may have used to. It may have been a way for families and friends to bond and taught youngsters to protect vulnerable parts of their bodies during play-fighting, like the neck and belly. Primates that participate in tickling pant a certain way, and the article suggests we may have the roots of modern-day laughter in this vocal behavior. Still doesn’t explain why I occasionally laugh so hard that I pee my pants.

Ed Yong reports on research that points to the absorption of marine bacteria into human guts to help process sushi. Japanese people utilize seaweed like nori in a variety of dishes, and the high prevalence of seaweed in their evolutionary diets provided for sushi-eating bacteria to enter into – and survive! – their digestive tracts. Which means that Japanese people can actually better digest seaweeds thanks to a bacteria that wasn’t originally there (and isn’t there in other groups). Unfortunately there are no cupcake-eating bacteria that can help me with my, erm, problem.

Bryan over at FieldHerper wows me again with his intense photos. It was hard to pick just one to highlight, but I’m SERIOUSLY partial to thunderstorm photos. I swear to God his photos are like naturalist porn. (Maybe that brings to mind something different than I’m thinking. That would be weird. *ponder* Super weird.)

HAPPY TUESDAY!! :)