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Posts Tagged ‘California’

tumbleweed_by_phoebe

Today’s photo comes courtesy of reader and sister Phoebe, who writes from California: “In a town covered in pavement, aka Redwood City, the origins of this 4 foot wide tumbleweed is a mystery.” (more…)

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Traveling back each year to the place I grew up, I notice changes in the commercial and residential landscape: bookstores that have gone, chains that have moved in, friends’ families who have moved away, the spreading of the suburban perimeter. I notice new traffic lights and speed bumps while driving through the old neighborhood. But until the birth of Urban Plant Research, I largely took for granted the strangeness of American suburban landscaping and the role plants play in setting the tone of this environment. This time I began to look.

suburbanflametree

Among tidily-kept lawn-shapes and bush sculptures, rock gardens and cement-scapes, here and there I found an errant wildness, like this lovely tree spouting fiery plumes from within the confines of a nondescript roof.

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