Topic: plants

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How are luffa/loofah sponges made?

The luffa or loofah scrubbing sponge found at spas and eco-friendly stores is made from a giant Egyptian cucumber. The fibrous xylem of the fruit can be harvested after the fruit has matured, browned, and dried. Natha...

Travel deep inside a redwood tree leaf

Travel down into a small flat redwood tree leaf through a stoma, a tiny opening in its surface. This animation from the California Academy of Sciences takes us on a scientifically accurate journey into a palisade cell...

How are tomatoes grown and harvested?

Plum-style tomatoes are grown and harvested in California, where 95% of America's processing tomatoes are grown. The process in the term 'processing' is a combination of tomato type—plum tomatoes are low on seeds and ...

A Pumpkin’s Life

A Pumpkin's Life is a Sesame Street-style pumpkin time-lapse filmed in 2011 by Jon Fletcher at Sykes-Cooper Farms in Elkton, Florida. To capture each stage, he built a solar-powered camera to capture the pumpkins from...

Florida’s mangrove swamp ecosystem illustrated

Go on an illustrated adventure through a Florida mangrove swamp. New York Times best-selling author Rachel Ignotofsky has teamed up with animator Leo Thom and The Mangrove Action Project for this quick animated introd...

Attack of the Tumbleweeds

Witness what one commenter calls "a comically absurd amount of tumbleweeds" as they blow across a desert road. The gathering of spiny skeletal balls was captured on a phone cam by Tim Tower while he was driving in Owy...

Which life form really dominates Earth?

In 2018, there are around 7.6 billion people on the planet, but weigh us all together on a giant scale and we only make up 1/10,000 of Earth’s biomass. What is biomass? And what life forms dominate the rest of the pla...

Hydrophytes, 4D-printed aquatic ‘plants’ for the future

Tentacles wiggle. Filaments expand. Tails spiral. Looking like coral polyps, sea pens, crustaceans, and other colorful aquatic lifeforms, these multi-material 3D printed 'plants' come alive. Triggered by air that's pu...

Soil Life in Action: Bioturbation with and without soil fauna

Bioturbation is the mixing of (plant) residues into soils and sediments by biotic activity. It is one of the fundamental processes in ecology, as it stimulates decomposition, creates habitats for other (micro)fauna an...

Animanimals: Ant

This team of leafcutter ants seems to be working well together, staying in step and following orders. But one ant is marching, bouncing, floating, and playing to its own beat. Can this team have fun and get the job do...

How to turn garden clippings into striking insect sculptures

How does Montreal-based designer Raku Inoue create his striking ‘Natura Insects’ series of plant sculptures on Instagram? It starts with collecting and sorting interesting materials from his garden, going with the flo...

The ancient Mayan tradition of chocolate making

Of all its delicious offerings, chocolate is Guatemala’s most divine treat. The ancient Mayan tradition of chocolate making is a 2,500-year-old cultural legacy kept alive by dedicated farmers, roasters and chocolatier...

The Wood Wide Web: How trees secretly talk to and share with each other

Trees secretly talk to each other underground. They're passing information and resources to and from each other through a network of mycorrhizal fungi—mykós means fungus and riza means root in Greek—a mat of long, thi...

In Search of Forgotten Colours – Sachio Yoshioka and the Art of Natural Dyeing

Sachio Yoshioka is the fifth-generation head of the Somenotsukasa Yoshioka dye workshop in Fushimi, southern Kyoto. When he succeeded to the family business in 1988, he abandoned the use of synthetic colours in favour...

Freaky Flowers 3: Echinopsis flowers bloom in time lapse

“Echinopsis” is the name for a large family of cacti that originally hails from the hills and mountains of South America, not the desert setting we often associate with cacti. “Echin” comes from the Latin word Ekihnos...

Why Do Tumbleweeds Tumble?

When we think of a desolate plain or a foreboding frontier town in the wild west, we might think of the iconic tumbleweed rolling through the scene. Or they might roll through as a joke. But for people who live in dry...

Rafflesia kerrii, the world’s largest, smelliest flower?!

Take a walk in the rainforest of Thailand's Khao Sok National Park with Maddie Moate and Greg Foot. They're on the lookout for Rafflesia kerrii, one of the world's largest, smelliest flowers. It's also a rare flow...

Stems, a bittersweet celebration of stop motion puppetry

Building with parts of plants, leftover technologies, and mechanical tidbits, stop-motion animator Ainslie Henderson creates unique puppets that take on a life of their own in his work. This video short, Stems, is a b...

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