Dragonflies can fly up to 20 miles per hour!
The Allium genus is one of the largest plant genera in the world, with over 1,250 species. Onions are also one of the oldest vegetables used as a food source. Historical citations list onions as a leading ingredient for infertility, impotence, headache, hair loss, and in muscle liniments. You can tell the temperature outside by listening to a cricket!
Count the number of chirps in 15 seconds, then add 37. The sum will be the approximation of temperature in degrees Fahrenheit. The male cricket does most of the singing by rubbing his wings together, usually to attract a female, but often to sound an alert when danger is near. 2 Figs were the first domesticated crop in the Near East about 11,400 years ago!
Archaeologists found carbonized figs in a village north of ancient Jericho, and compared the fruits to modern specimens. Through this comparison, they determined that the fruits had been intentionally propagated. 3
Rafflesia arnoldii grows in the rainforests of Indonesia. It is a parasitic plant which uses a host plant to gather water and nutrients. Though beautiful to behold, the bloom has an odor similar to that of rotting meat.
Though not welcome inside the house, these predators consume large quantities of aphids and scale insects, and are responsible for benefiting the pecan industry by controlling the pecan aphid.
Generally, the female lays a clutch of 2 eggs. The nest is never left unattended; the male sits on the nest from mid-morning until late afternoon, then the female takes over for the night.
Chlorophyll is the green pigment needed for photosynthesis. In variegated leaves, the cells that are genetically unable to produce this pigment appear white; some pigments in the mutated cells can produce pink or yellow. These interesting and attractive plants are prized by most gardeners, and highly cultivated by nurseries. A variegated plant will grow more slowly because of its reduced ability to produce food energy.
Ever sit out at dusk and suddenly notice a heavenly scent on the air? Chances are, you or your neighbors have one or more of the common night-blooming species such as Flowering Tobacco (Nicotiana alata), Moonflower (Ipomoea alba), or Angel's Trumpet (Datura inoxia). Petunias bloom during the day, but release their scent at night. August Hosta (Hosta plantaginea) fills the evening air with heavy perfume, and the Lemon lily (Hemerocallis lilioasphodelus) and Citron Lily (Hemerocallis citrina) release a crisp, refreshing scent. Shrubs that are known for night scent are the Ear-leaved Umbrella Tree (Magnolia fraseri) and Sweet Bay (Magnolia virginiana).
(Editor's Note: This article was originally published on October 30, 2008. Your comments are welcome, but please be aware that authors of previously published articles may not be able to promptly respond to new questions or comments.)