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Biological Tour!

wanhong's picture

Our biological tour was amazing, not only because of the plant species we were shown but also because I found many interesting "natural crafts" around the campus.

So, what are these plants?

Leaf of a Yew


This is the leaf of a yew. It is, surprisingly, slightly toxic, but its toxicity could help treat cancer if used properly.It is more dominate here than many native species and thrives at central east part of the country. Some Tulip Trees grow well around Yews.

Verbinum plant



Verbinum is the theoretically invasive plant here! Its leaves has a smell of green pepper even when they are fading in color.

Pokey Sundra



The green, ignorable plants under our feet are called Pokey Sundra. There are so many of them!

Spicy Bush



The lovely Spicy Bush has a lemon smell, and they looks as yellow as lemon as well. We found some of them right next to Verbinum.

There were so many plants inside and around the campus, and it is exciting for us to learn their names! Apart from these "regular" looking plants, there are weird ones...




For some so-far-unknown reason, this tree has a "fracture" with stick black leakings. We guessed it might be "gum"!




This leaf looks as if it has been sculptured...we "argued" why it looks like this: some of us thought the pattern was created by a bug, worm or some small living creatures, while others thought it was just "natural fading/destruction".












The Cross-sectional area of a huge tree trunk--there were so many annual rings on it and so many of them interfered with each other than we could hardly tell how old it was...Later a worm was found in a brick close to this looked horrible and I didn't have the courage to take a picture of it...

In general the biological tour was different than a geological one--we focused on living things (mostly plants) rather than seemingly motionless&emotionless rocks. I simply feel that plants are amazing--without them the campus would not look as beautiful and vital as it is now. It was an amazing experience for me to learn more about these silent neighbours, and this experience makes me want to do something to protect and take care of plant species.

Also I want to thank Emily Tong and Sarah Macholdt (and a few more biology students who I could not remember all their names) for sharing this biological experience with us and Sarah and Shengjia in our class for making us a great "team of exploration"!




sara.gladwin's picture

"silent neighbors"

I really love your pictural retelling of our botanical tour! It was fun to see our shared sitings here on serendip. I love the phrase "silent neighbors" and I am glad you feel called protection!

wanhong's picture

NICE neighbours! :P

I am so happy you like these photos! I still can't forget the "worm discovery"...but the tour was really amazing--Thanks a lot for showing us around~!