Leaves 10 May 2014

Leaves (3)

Leaves links out to the very best plant-related content I’ve found on the world wild web this week.

Chemicals in your food? I hope so

Life is a chemical cocktail and Compound Interest is exploring everyday chemical compounds in lovely infographic detail. You might want to find out why coriander tastes as it does, or why beetroot or asparagus can do strange things to urine? Why is tea best without milk? Or discover hallucinogenic nutmegs and why cloves can guard against toothache and premature ejaculation. Chemicals are awesome – just in the right concentration!

Backyard permaculture

Kay Baxter has done an update on the Koanga 200m2 urban permaculture garden design. Inspiring stuff for those food warriors in a suburban setting.

Our Easter bunny is a botanist

The time for easter egg dying is over but there’s always time to learn about plant dyes. So many uses…  I do so enjoy The Botanist in the Kitchen.

Getting frondly with ferns

New Zealand has nearly 200 species of native ferns so it’s patriotic to brush up on your fern knowledge. Te Papa is holding an online Science Live event May 16 and engaging citizen scientists. The website has lots of great fern content. More great blog posts about ferns here and at Te Ara – the encyclopaedia of New Zealand.

NZ Food Bill

You must have seen that article that gets shared around about once a month that there is a new Food Bill that will make growing your own food illegal? People, please stop sharing that link. It’s BS. Well, the actual real NZ Food Bill is being updated and the scaremongering is hopefully over. Greens MP and ex Organics NZ main man Steffan Browning tells us why he’s voting for the Food Bill, in the first of a series looking at what’s up.

Omaha Conference on Cover Crops and Soil Health

When it comes down to it we shouldn’t be focussing on growing plants but instead growing soil. Plants really do grow themselves when there is good soil. There was a big Soil Health Conference in the US and they’ve made videos and pdfs of each presentation available. Some incredible stuff from the tiny amount I’ve already seen.

Secrets of Svalbard

Seeds aren’t just sexy, they are sex itself. One of my favourite seed scientists Luigi Guarino interviewed about the Svalbard Seed Vault and the politics behind the future of global crop diversity And for those who want to know why a global bank is necessary, have a look at the Philiipine National Genebank. As a bonus, an amazing photo of Svalbard’s cliffs from National Geographic Photo of the Day just cos…


Svalbard cliffs, Norway

Sea cliffs of Svalbard, Norway. National Geographic Photo of the Day

Missed last week’s must-reads? Don’t, get your dose of vitamins and minerals here.