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25 April 2018
A visit to a natural sandstone arch (or “bridge” as the locals call it) in eastern Kentucky yields unexpected bonuses, like fossil wood, Liesegang banding, and the honeycomb-like weathering pattern called “tafoni.”
9 October 2017
Braiding Sweetgrass is a collection of thematically-linked essays by Robin Wall Kimmerer, an environmentalist, academic, and Native American. The themes that unite them are plants, the human relationship to the natural world, and love. I’ve read Kimmerer’s essays in Orion before, but there’s a sort of literary force multiplier when you get a whole book full of her thoughtful insights, story after story, back to back. Braiding Sweetgrass is a …
29 September 2017
The Friday folds are small soft-sediment deformational features within a dismembered, folded sandstone (a “ploudin”) from a mass transport deposit from the latest Devonian of West Virginia.
2 May 2017
It’s getting green outside – what’s it mean for the planet? Find out in this blog post contemplating the relationship between spring leaves and atmospheric CO2.
24 December 2016
It’s bonfire season here in the Fort Valley. I live in a forest, and that forest is full of dead and downed wood. Motivated by a desire to (a) reduce forest fire risk and (b) clear out some of the area under the trees for unobstructed recreation, I gather it up and periodically burn it off in batches. We time these blazes to the weather – before or after after …
10 September 2016
Not only does it turn out that peat grows on hill tops, not just valley bottoms, but it can slough off and create “peat slides” too!
24 May 2016
Alethopteris fern fossil: Link GIGAmacro by Robin Rohrback Rapid River Canyon, Idaho: Link GigaPan by Callan Bentley River cobble of brecciated Columbia River Basalt, Hammer Creek (Salmon River), Idaho: Link GIGAmacro by Callan Bentley Petersburg Granite exposed at Belle Isle, Richmond, Virginia: Link GigaPan by Jeffrey Rollins Ammonite: Link GIGAmacro by Callan Bentley Slickensides in ultramafic rocks of the Wallowa Terrane, just outboard of the paleo-Laurentian tectonic margin, Salmon River, …
7 April 2016
Another week, another batch of new images produced on my home-based Magnify2 imaging system from GIGAmacro. Leptaena brachiopod in (Mississippian?) limestone from Montana: Link Here’s the flip side of the same sample, with a lot of fenestrate bryozoans to see: Link Fault breccia from the Corona Heights Fault of San Francisco: Link Amygdular metabasalt from the western Sierra Nevada of California: Link Araucaria mirabilis gymnosperm cone fossil, from the Cerro …
2 April 2016
Here are a few new images I’ve been working on with my home-based Magnify2 imaging system from GIGAmacro. Strophomenid brachiopods from Mississippian Mauch Chunk Formation, West Virginia: Link Boninite from New Caledonia: Link Lepidodendron scale-tree bark from Poland: Link Potassium feldspar crystal, from a pegmatite: Link Catoctin Formation greenstone from a feeder dike east of Linden, Virginia: Link Enjoy exploring them for details.
21 February 2016
I just finished this book, about the botanical and agricultural predilections of United States ‘founding fathers’ George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and James Madison. Three of these farmed and gardened in Virginia, one in Massachusetts. Some were federalists, others republicans who championed the rights of the states. Some were slave owners, others not. All saw gardening as foundational to a sustainable democracy. This history examines the revolutionary war and …