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24 December 2016
A wondrous transformation
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
Nine new GigaPans from Team M.A.G.I.C.
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
New GIGAmacro images of rock samples
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
Five new GIGAmacro images
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
Founding Gardeners, by Andrea Wulf
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 …
14 February 2015
Happy Valentine’s Day!
10 November 2014
Root wedging: a recent example
What is Kenny pointing at here? Why, it’s a boulder. Where did it come from? Look uphill: This is as perfect an example of root wedging as I’ve seen! Spotted it last Friday along the C&O Canal towpath.
7 May 2014
Bedding / cleavage relationships in the Edinburg Formation
Here’s a little scene along Route 340 / 522, north of Front Royal and south of Double Tollgate, Virginia, in the Shenandoah Valley: The rock here is limestone and shale of the Edinburg Formation, a late Ordovician unit that records the transition from passive margin sedimentation to the increasingly ‘dirty’ clastic influence of the Taconian Orogeny. Have a look: I hope you’ll notice there are layers of two distinct lithologies …
2 May 2014
Friday fauxld: Pennsylvanian plant fossil
Have a gander at this: Given that this is a Friday on Mountain Beltway, you might expect to see a fold here, and indeed, there’s something wavy and high-contrast running through the center of this sample. But that’s no fold. It’s a fossil plant! A “reed” of some kind, I guess. You can also see a small fern frond in the lower right. This is a sample of the Pennsylvanian-aged …