Human Flower Project

Orrington, MAINE USA

flag flower bed

parker basket thumb
Princeton, MAINE USA

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The Flower of Prog Rock

Musician Ted Thomas turns us on to a human flower project of the 1970s. When you decode it, send word (250 or less, please).


Peter Gabriel performs “Willow Farm” with Genesis

Photo: Peter Gabriel Scrapbook

Back about 1972, the pop music scene started diversifying way too wildly and broadly for us to keep up on all fronts (having one’s head in a Gratefully Dead cloud didn’t help things). So except for “Tommy” by the Who, we completely missed, among other genres, the Progressive Rock scene. Our friend Ted Thomas, a founder of prog rock band Thirteen of Everything,  is gently trying to educate us some 35 years later.

Recently, he treated us to a segment of concert footage—the band Genesis playing its opus “Supper’s Ready.”


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Posted by Julie on 03/31 at 01:31 PM
Art & MediaPermalink

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Whatever Floats Your Duck

BioHaven island gardens were a hit with spectators and waterfowl alike at Christchurch’s Festival of Flowers.


A duck hunkers down on a “BioHaven”

on the Avon River, Christchurch, N. Z.

Photo: Rodney Love

Wildlife gardening is a bit of an oxymoron. More than a bit. Here we go tearing things up, having boulders “installed.” We’ve hybridized the scent (and flavor?) out of flowers, meanwhile mixing up red sugarwater to seduce a few hummingbirds.

Ducks on the Avon River in Christchurch, New Zealand, suggest we’ve been rather narrow and condescending where wildlife gardening is concerned. Who’s to say that wildlife always prefers wilderness?

Marise Richards sent along these fabulous photographs taken by Rodney Love—of local fowl enjoying the recent Festival of Flowers. Marise forwarded an excerpt from the Festival’s official statement about the glorious island gardens created for the event:

“As part of the Festival of Flowers 20th Anniversary Season, the Christchurch Garden City Trust is bringing back a much loved event: floats on the Avon River. For 2009, the floats will actually be floating ‘BioHaven’ islands, each measuring 2 square metres.”

BioHaven is right! Local ducks decidedly preferred these splendid, unnatural nests to the wild rushes along the riverbank. 

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Posted by Julie on 03/29 at 04:26 PM
EcologyGardening & LandscapePermalink

Friday, March 27, 2009

Blooms for the Pope in Angola

Floral gifts for honored guests need not always be corsages or bouquets.


A young admirer holds out a floral welcome to the Pope

Luanda, Angola, March 21, 2009.

Photo: Reuters

Greeting foreign dignitaries with flowers is a custom in many parts of the world, both honorific and disarming. A floral welcome strikes a magic balance by confronting power with simple delicacy.

With local variations, the gesture takes on cultural significance, depth, as with these floral greetings for Pope Benedict XVI in Angola.

A bold, smiling girl stuck a dramatic red blossom (proteas?) under the pontiff’s nose last Saturday, March 21,  before the Pope addressed a youth gathering in Luanda. Can you imagine this in the Netherlands or Polynesia?

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Posted by Julie on 03/27 at 05:31 PM
Culture & SocietySecular CustomsPermalink

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Listen Up: SF Garden Show 2009

Some people want to see garden exhibits. But Georgia Silvera Seamans takes notes on the garden-show-goers’ commentary. Enjoy the spikes and snarks of her fine experiment in participant observation.

Field notes and all photos by Georgia Silvera Seamans

Five things I learned at the San Francisco Garden Show


• Orchids

Orchids are a big deal.  Orchids attract a lot of attention and verbal responses like “Ooh” and “Aah.”  I used the pedestrian entrance and once I got past the lobby, I was greeted by a large ORCHID banner and numerous orchid vendors.  On the way to the “Marketplace” building I overheard two women coo at a gentleman who was pulling a wagon filled with orchids – purple, white, and pink.  To be clear, they were ogling the orchids, not the man.

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Posted by Julie on 03/25 at 09:13 PM
Art & MediaCulture & SocietyGardening & LandscapePermalink
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