An inspiring video for lovers of fungi and macrophotography

When I was in 7th grade, my science teacher gave the class several project options, one of which was to collect specimens of fungi. I liked being outside, and was keen to do this particular assignment. Mom helped by suggesting a trip to Philippe Park in Safety Harbor (FL). Philippe Park is now manicured, butContinue reading “An inspiring video for lovers of fungi and macrophotography”

Pineapple to the rescue! Surviving amoebic dysentery and reducing eye floaters.

Once upon a time, pineapple saved my life. I was touring in Kenya and staying at a lodge near Lake Nakuru. I sat down to dinner and the first course was served—a cup of beef bullion. I held the spoon to my mouth, but couldn’t swallow. The thought of swallowing filled me with nausea. IContinue reading “Pineapple to the rescue! Surviving amoebic dysentery and reducing eye floaters.”

The Hairy Fungus That Wasn’t

I found this interesting, hairy fungus during a trek at Tillie K. Fowler Regional Park. Except it isn’t a fungus. It’s Myxogastria stemonitis, or Hairy Brown Slime Mold, or Chocolate Tube Slime Mold, or Pipe Cleaner Slime.  Hmm. But molds are fungi! True, but slime molds were only differentiated from fungi in the late 1800s.Continue reading “The Hairy Fungus That Wasn’t”

Trees Infected by Spirits (or Cancer)

I was captivated by these trees, which have a mystical, storybook quality. This spirit tree appears to have flowing hair. It spreads its arms and blesses the world. However, this many-eyed tree is a quiet observer. What do you see? I see an old man’s face growing from this tree, although the tree itself isContinue reading “Trees Infected by Spirits (or Cancer)”

Sesbania punicea, a deadly invasive plant

At Sweetwater Wetlands Park in Gainesville, FL, I noticed a pair of wispy trees along the boardwalk. They had orange-red blooms, but it was the draping compound leaves that caught my attention. Other people have noticed the plant’s beauty as well, and Sesbania punicea has been widely imported from South America as an ornamental gardenContinue reading “Sesbania punicea, a deadly invasive plant”