by Julie Everett Growing up, I had a forsythia bush in my backyard. For some reason, each spring my sister and I would always eat the flowers from it while we were playing outside. I’m not sure why we kept doing that, and I’m not sure if the flowers are even safe to eat, but we both turned out fine (and with an appetite to consume science in a more appropriate way). Back then, plants were something for me to use and play with, similar to my toys inside, but provided by nature
by Charles W. Bier I don’t know when I first began to really know trees. As a youngster, I was literally a snake-in-my-pocket sort of kid. Yeah, could not get enough snakes in my life. I was blooming as a broader young naturalist in my later elementary years, and I do remember leading a walk for a small group of people on some open land near where I grew up north of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. On that walk I remember being asked the identity of a smooth, light grey barked tr
by Briana Jasinski I was first introduced to cloudberries via the name of a man-made structure. This structure was a slowly dilapidating bed-and-breakfast called The Cloudberry, located in Fairbanks, Alaska, and its wooden turrets rose up like an enchanted castle above the stunted boreal black spruce forest. It was used as field housing in the rainy summer of 2014 when I received my first botany technician job. Little did I know, the Cloudberry would recur in my life, over an
by Rachelle the Drunk Phytologist Looking back, my whole childhood was a plant and nature love story, complete with a 20 acre playground. Growing up on a show rabbit farm in Northeastern Indiana allowed me to explore, dream, and get dirty. I made little moats in the mud of my mom's garden to water her bedding plants, picked fruits out of our orchard, and jumped into our pond on a hot day to gather pond weed and algae for an impromptu Loch Ness monster costume. As a nerdy kid
by Matt Candeias The first time I saw lupine blooming in the wild, a blanket of purplish blue flowers swaying softly, covering an Indiana dune, I had to sit down. We had just come through a clearing in the trees, following a trail down to the lake front that allowed us to hike through 10,000 years of dune succession in a single afternoon. I saw the blue spikes off in the distance, but until I came to them I didn’t realize what I had been seeing. The view was stunning. Wild l
by Lizz Waring Lizz shares the story of learning to love plants on a school field trip... Transcript: This is Lizz Waring from Texas Tech and she is going to tell us her plant love story. This is my plant Love Story involving a 19th century president and how he made me fall in love love with plants. So when I was in Middle School I lived in Northwestern Ohio in a little tiny town called Oak Harbor, which was near the city of Fremont, which you’ve also probably never heard of.
by Jeremie Fant That I chose a species I once hated for my first “Plant love Story” was a surprise even to me. However, given the thin line which separates love from hate, maybe it was to be expected. Yet it was clear as I was thinking of a subject for this story, the one image I keep returning to was a small tree growing in the thin strip of garden which separated our driveway from our neighbor’s. This tree stood around 40 feet tall, straddling the two sides of the property.
Summer is winding down in our half of the world, so we thought we would take some time to reminisce on our summer travels. Plant Love Stories (PLS) hit the conference circuit this summer, attending the North American Conference on Conservation Biology in Toronto (NACCB), and the Ecological Society of America’s meeting in New Orleans (ESA). At NACCB, we had a big crew of PLS co-founders. We gave out swag and hosted Plant Love Stories LIVE - our first ever live storytelling eve
by Caitlin McDonough MacKenzie Our second audio story is here! You can hear Caitlin's story using the video link below. A transcript is also available below: I fell in love with alpine plants at the bottom of the mountain. In college I worked as an environmental educator at a backcountry hut in New Hampshire’s White Mountains. Many of these huts are “high mountain,” perched just at treeline for beautiful hikes through alpine communities with Sound-of-Music-style panoramic vi
by Mikayla Mason My name is Mikayla Mason and I have absolutely no memory of a time in my life when I did not love working with plants. My grandmother tells the story of how, when we were walking through a mall when I was three, I stopped at a planter where a small plant had been pulled out and spent ten minutes replanting it. My grandmother always ends this story with the comment that she was surprised at how gentle and careful I was with the plant. For whatever reason, this
by Thomas Oberbauer Growing up in San Diego County in Southern California, I was exposed to a wide variety of habitats during weekend drives with my parents. Early on, I began to appreciate the diversity of California’s vegetation, from coastal scrub and chaparral to the forests and deserts. One summer in high school, I took a biology class that had an assignment to create a botany booklet. The booklet had to contain 20 species of plants with photographs and descriptions. P
by Emmi Kurosawa I was working at a pharmaceutical company for the longest time, saving lives and making a happy living for myself... Well, until I met "carnivorous plants" at the Boston Flower Show. They were weird, wild and wonderful! They come in different shapes and colors. Venus flytraps, pitcher plants, sundews, bladderworts, and corkscrew plants. Each has developed a unique way of attracting, capturing, and digesting insects. I was completely awed by their singularity
by Andrew Hipp "And so, when his prescribed devotion to boyish beauties has carried our candidate so far that the universal beauty dawns upon his inward sight, he is almost within reach of the final revelation. And this is the way, the only way, he must approach, or be led toward, the sanctuary of Love. Starting from individual beauties, the quest for the universal beauty must find him ever mounting the heavenly ladder, stepping from rung to rung--that is, from one to two, an
by Lucy Zipf Black needlerush (Juncus roemerianus) is the dominant plant species in the wide, flat marshes that surround the Pamlico Sound in Eastern North Carolina, where I found myself working a few years ago, as well as much of the US southeastern and gulf coasts. And yet, the vast majority of marsh ecology takes place in cordgrass-dominated marshes. This could be due to the high concentration of research universities in New England and California, where cordgrass marshes