Topic: plants

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A New Republic: The portrait work of artist Kehinde Wiley

Blending and contrasting contemporary clothes and objects with ornate fabrics, lush plant life, detailed patterns, and bold colors that reference earlier eras of art history, Kehinde Wiley's heroic portraits are large...

The Exhale Bionic Chandelier: Microorganism-filled ‘leaves’ that ‘breathe’

An air purifier, an art object, and a piece of lighting design all in one living, 'breathing' chandelier. This is London-based inventor and bioengineer Julian Melchiorri's Exhale Bionic Chandelier, a microorganism-fil...

This giant plant looks like raw meat and smells like dead rat

This gigantic flower, native to western Sumatra and infamous for smelling like something rotten, is the corpse flower or titan arum, and it's not really a single flower. The flowers are at the base of the tall spadix ...

The Link Between Japanese Samurai and Real Indigo

Real indigo-dyed clothing is not like the blue you know. Richer than the chemical blues used on most fabrics today, real indigo dye comes from a plant and has a surprising range of qualities: on fabric it is antibacte...

How Do Tropical Rainforests Make Clouds?

What is a tropical rainforest and how do they make clouds? Maddie Moate and Greg Foot visit the world's largest indoor tropical rainforest at The Eden Project in Cornwall, United Kingdom. There, while crossing the pro...

1000s of Bugs, 100 Islands, 1 Happy Entomologist

Community ecologist, biodiversity scientist, and entomologist Crystal Ernst is cataloging insects, spiders, and other tiny creatures for the 100 Islands Project, a multiyear island biogeography study across the Centra...

Carl Linnaeus’ Systema Naturae and Herbarium Cabinet

How did scientists and naturalists organize their artifact collections in the 1700s? How could these systems, long before we began to rely on computers to help us organize data, improve our understanding of the natura...

Pottery, a stove, and a palm frond dome hut – Primitive Technology

Since buying new land in Australia's dense tropical rainforest, the man behind Primitive Technology has had access to better clay, good stone, and other abundant materials for building. In the video above, he makes sm...

Why Do These Monkeys Have Such Outrageous Noses?

Though they might look unusual to humans, proboscis monkeys are well-adapted to their tree-dwelling life in the mangrove swamps of Borneo. Their large fleshy noses are thought to create a resonating chamber for their ...

How Yodoe oil-paper umbrellas are crafted in Japan

There's a long tradition of making oil-paper umbrellas in Yodoe, a city in the Tottori Prefecture of Japan. The process involves over 70 steps, crafted on a variety of specially-made tools by skilled artisans, includi...

Harvesting cork in rural Spain

At the Las Varas del Zumajo estate in the La Mancha region of Spain, expert axemen carefully harvest the thick exterior bark from cork oak trees. This cork extraction occurs every nine years, in July and August when t...

Making a rice straw animal sculpture, a time lapse for the Wara Art Festival

A wooden framework and curved plastic pipes provide a solid structure for 'knit' bundles of wara or rice straw, the byproduct of the season's rice harvest. As volunteers work together to tie and wrap the bundles into ...

Why is syrup sticky?

Water isn't sticky, and sugar on its own isn't sticky either. So why is syrup—a heated, melty combination of water and sugar—so very, very sticky? Emily Elert of MinuteEarth explains the sticky molecular structures of...

Why Is The Very Hungry Caterpillar So Dang Hungry?

Monarchs are ravenous for milkweed. California pipevine swallowtail caterpillars want lots of pipevine. Why are these very hungry caterpillars so hungry? “Caterpillars have to store up incredible reserves of prote...

Sandals – Primitive Technology

If you find yourself in the bush (or your back yard) without any footwear and your feet need some primitive protection from the rough terrain, try making your own sandals from scratch. Primitive Technology's anonymous...

Beavers: The Smartest Thing in Fur Pants

Beavers have done more to shape North American landscapes than any animal beside humans. We don’t notice them much today because there aren’t many left, but before colonization, North America was home to hundreds of m...

The Pseudo Fossil Challenge

Pseudo means that something isn't real. A fossil is "the preserved remains or traces of animals, plants, and other organisms from the remote past." A pseudofossil might be mistaken for a fossil, but was actually creat...

Witnessing butterflies emerge at the California Academy of Sciences

Within the California Academy of Sciences' rainforest exhibit, butterflies and moths emerge from their chrysalis and cocoons in a specially designed emergence display. Biologist Tim Wong shows how they set up the clim...

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