Did you know?
Lichen, that interesting green stuff that frequently grows on rocks and tree trunks, is an algae and a fungus living together in a symbiotic relationship as a composite plant. Lichen only grow where the air is fresh and clean, so if you have some growing in your yard, that’s a good thing!
The Giant Sequoia (Sequoia giganteum), native to the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada, is a tree that holds the record for being the world’s most massive living thing. The largest Giant Sequoia known is named General Sherman. It is 272 feet tall. The base of the trunk is 35 feet in diameter, 109 feet in circumference. At 120 feet up the trunk is still 17 feet in diameter! The trunk of General Sherman is estimated to weigh nearly 1400 tons. In comparison, this is roughly equivalent to 15 blue whales, 10 diesel-electric train locomotives, or 25 military battle tanks!
The Coast Redwood (Sequoia sempervirens), a relative of the Giant Sequoia, holds the record for being the tallest tree. The Coast Redwood is native to California the Tallest Living redwood on record is 367 feet tall – 62 feet taller than the Statue of Liberty!
The smallest known tree is a dwarf willow which only reaches two inches in height. It is native to the tundra of Greenland.
The dandelion has been declared an endangered wildflower in England (many of us wish it were endangered in our gardens!).
A snail can sleep for three years.
Mexican Jumping Beans come from the worm-infested fruit of the Chinese Tallow Tree.
“Pittosporum” (a popular plant found in nearly all of our landscapes) means sticky seed.
The figs we eat are technically flowers, not fruit.
Strawberries are the only fruit with seeds on the outside!
Only the five inside “petals” on roses are really petals; the rest are floral leaves.
Pollen is one of the few natural substances that will not deteriorate (not good news for allergy sufferers). More bad news for allergy sufferers: One rag-weed plant can release as many as one billion grains of pollen. Speaking of pollen, did you know the air expelled from a sneeze can travel at 100 plus miles per hour?