Nature’s Depths

Walking through nature with John Palka, a neuroscientist who loves plants and ponders big questions

Exploration

Freedom!

New Life on Our Doorstep

Exploration

It was April 20th of this year. We were sitting in our lovely three-season sun porch enjoying the coming of spring, I on the couch and Yvonne, opposite me, in her favorite gliding rocker. All of a sudden she exclaimed, “Look. There’s a duck on our railing!”

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Magnolia buds in Seattle

The Buds of Spring

Exploration

While the colors of the winter months are mostly muted, spring brings fresh greens, pinks, yellows, and soon the full, vibrant palette of freshly emerged flowers. Where do all those fresh leaves and brilliant flowers come from? The buds.

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Drops of sap forming, Eastman Nature Center

The Sap Is Rising

Exploration

Among the annual changes that occur in the deciduous forests of the Upper Midwest, the Northeast, and many parts of Canada is the extravagant production of the sweet sap of sugar maples (Acer saccharum, Family Sapindaceae) and a handful of other tree species.

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LeConte Iceberg, Alaska

Water and the Dynamic Life of Molecules

Exploration

Water is abundant on our Earth and is also essential for all of life as we know it. It is part of our daily experience—we see it, we drink it, we feel it on our skin. But what is water? How does it get the properties that are so familiar to us? Why is it central to the processes of life? Let’s take a look.

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