Saw Palmetto is a small palm tree, normally reaching a height of around 3–6 feet. Its trunk is sprawling, and it grows in clumps or dense thickets in sandy coastal lands or as undergrowth in pine woods or hardwood hammocks.
The light green leaves of the palm have a bare stem terminating in a rounded fan of about 20 leaflets. The upper stem is armed with sharp teeth or spines that give the species its common name. The spines are easily capable of breaking the skin, and protection should be worn when working around a Saw Palmetto.
The fruits of the Saw Palmetto are highly enriched with fatty acids and phytosterols, and extracts of the fruits have been the subject of intensive research for the treatment of urinary tract infections. This extract is also commonly used for other medical conditions.
Aboriginal Americans used the fruit for food and in the treatment of a variety of urinary and reproductive system problems. The Mayans drank it as a tonic, and the Seminoles used the berries as an expectorant and antiseptic. The extract has been suggested as a potential treatment for male pattern baldness.
Zosimos was an alchemist from the end of the 3rd century AD. He provided one of the first definitions of alchemy as the study of the composition of waters, movement, growth, embodying and disembodying, drawing the spirits from bodies and bonding the spirits within bodies.
One of Zosimos’ texts is about a sequence of dreams related to alchemy. In his dream he comes to an altar and meets a priest of inner sanctuaries, submitting himself to an unendurable torment. The priest fights and impales Zosimos with a sword, dismembering him “in accordance with the rule of harmony”.
Returning to the same altar, Zosimos finds a man being boiled alive, yet still alive, who says to him, “The sight that you see is the entrance, and the exit, and the transformation. Those who seek to obtain the art enter here, and become spirits by escaping”. Zosimos also dreams of a place where all who enter immediately burst into flames.
Carl Jung believed these visions to be a sort of alchemical allegory, with the tormented personifying transmutation, burning or boiling itself to become something else. In ancient alchemy, dual nature is constantly emphasized, two principles balancing one another, active and passive, masculine and feminine, which constitute the eternal cycle of birth and death.
Mexican Clover or Richardia grandiflora is a persistent groundcover that can make area lawns in southern Florida appear to be dusted with snow. The viney ground cover plant has flowers about 0.8 inch long and forms thick mats, spreading by seeds.
Although Mexican Clover is not in the clover family, the flower heads remind one of spent red clover seed heads. The flowers form in a terminal cluster from a four leaf bract. Each flower consists of six narrow lobes joined at the base to form a tube. The petals are white with shades of pink or lavender and are funnel-shaped.
The range is continuous from the Carribean through Mexico and Central America and it blooms in any month that lacks frost. It is grown as forage and a cover crop in the southern states, responds well to mowing, minimizes the need to irrigate and fertilize, spreads quickly and adds color.
Each flower typically produces three nutlets which function as a food source for small animals and insects. In addition, Mexican clover serves as a significant nectar source for butterflies and bees.
Ludwigia arcuata, or Long-Stalked Seedbox, is a species native to the southeastern United States, where it grows creeping or submersed in swampy environments and along the edges of rivers and ponds.
It is a reddish stemmed plant that has a strong tendency to branch. Easily grown emersed in damp soils, it produces a stunning flower. The beautiful yellow flowers have four comparatively large petals and are a distinguishing characteristic of the species
Though it is one of the most delicate Ludwigia species, Ludwigia arcuata is somewhat of a mainstay among aquatic plant hobbyists. It is normally available as “Needle Leaf Ludwigia” and can be procured through most internet aquatic plant retailers.
The pollen grains are loosely held together by viscin threads, meaning that only bees that are morphologically specialized to gather this pollen can effectively pollinate the flowers. It is easily propagated from the seeds as well as from cuttings.
Pigeon plum, sometimes called doveplum and pigeon seagrape, is one of the larger seacoast trees found in central and southern Florida, the Keys, and the Northern Caribbean. It is tolerant of salt spray and often grows well in sandy, rocky, or broken coral soils near tidewater areas. Pigeon plum is recommended as a good hurricane resistant species for barrier plantings.
It is a medium sized, evergreen tree that can reach heights of 80 feet but more commonly averages from 30 to 40 feet. It has dense, spreading branches and a round-topped crown. The fruit is a thin walled, light brown seed encased in a tubular, dark red, berry-like pulp.
The fruit is eaten by numerous wildlife species, especially doves and pigeons, hence its common names. The white-crowned pigeon is a frequent visitor. Other wildlife that is known to eat the fleshy fruits and seeds include raccoons, small rodents, mockingbirds, catbirds, robins, and woodpeckers.
The heavy, dark, reddish-brown wood has limited use in furniture manufacture and cabinetry. The wood is hard and strong but can be brittle, so its commercial value is limited. Being a well-behaved tree, it is commonly used in parking lots, where its shade provides relief from the reflected heat of the asphalt.
Spanish moss is a bromeliad with thin, thread-like leaves that reach up to 10 feet in length. It ranges from the southeastern United States across the West Indies, Central America and as far south as Chile and northern Argentina. It is the most well known bromeliad in the world after the pineapple.
Found extensively in tropical trees, Spanish moss foliage prospers in dappled sunlight under tree leaves. Although tolerant of occasional exposure to heat and sun, the foliage is lush and succulent especially when humidity is high.
It is commonly associated with the live oak and bald cypress trees in the American South. If humidity is high year round, Spanish moss can germinate and clasp onto rock surfaces and cliffs. This ability to grow from any coarse surface manifests itself in human settlements, where the bromeliad grows on roof eaves, fences and telephone lines.
Spanish moss has been used for various purposes, including building insulation, mulch, packing material, mattress stuffing, and fiber. In 1939 over 10,000 tons of processed Spanish moss was produced. It is still collected today in smaller quantities for use in arts and crafts, or for beddings for flower gardens.
Roystonea regia, commonly known as the royal palm, is a species of palm which is native to southern Florida, Mexico and parts of Central America. A large and attractive palm, it has been planted throughout the tropics and subtropics as an ornamental tree.
It is a large palm which reaches a height of 66 to 98 feet, with heights up to 113 feet reported. Trees have an average of 15 leaves or fronds which can be up to 13 feet long. The flowers are white with pinkish anthers. The fruit are green when immature, turning red and eventually purplish-black as they mature.
The seed is used as a source of oil and for livestock feed. Leaves are used for thatching and the wood for construction. As a medicinal plant, the roots are used as a diuretic and are added to Tifey, a Haitian drink, by Cubans of Haitian origin. They are also used as a treatment for diabetes.
The fruit is eaten by birds and bats which disperse the seeds. It serves as a roosting site and food source for a variety of animals. It is the national tree of Cuba and has religious significance in Christianity where it is used in Palm Sunday observances.
Roystonea regia is named in memory of Union Army general Roy Stone for his contributions during The Good Roads Movement in Puerto Rico between 1880 and 1916.
Allometry is the study of the relationship between size and shape. It is a well-known study in biology for practical applications to the differential growth rates of the parts of a living organism’s body. One application is in the study of various insect species where a small change in overall body size can lead to an enormous and disproportionate increase in the dimensions of appendages such as legs, antennae, or horns.
It often studies shape differences in terms of ratios of the objects’ dimensions. Two objects of different size but common shape will have their dimensions in the same ratio. Take, for example, a biological object that grows as it matures. Its size changes with age but the shapes are similar.
In addition to studies that focus on growth, allometry also examines shape variation among individuals of a given age, which is referred to as static allometry. Comparisons of species are used to examine interspecific or evolutionary allometry. An example is found in frogs – aside from a brief period during the few weeks after metamorphosis, frogs grow isometrically. Therefore, a frog whose legs are as long as its body will retain that relationship throughout its life, even if the frog itself increases in size tremendously.
Psychology depicts love as a cognitive and social phenomenon. Psychologists have formulated a triangular theory of love and argued that love has three different components: intimacy, commitment, and passion.
Intimacy is a form in which two people share confidences and various details of their personal lives, and is usually shown in friendships and romantic love affairs. Commitment, on the other hand, is the expectation that the relationship is permanent. Passionate love is shown in infatuation as well as romantic love. All forms of love are viewed as varying combinations of these three components.
Following developments in electrical theories such as Coulomb’s law, which showed that positive and negative charges attract, analogs in human life were developed, such as “opposites attract.” Research on the nature of human mating has generally found this not to be true when it comes to character and personality, and that people tend to like people similar to themselves.
However, in a few unusual and specific domains, such as immune systems, it seems that humans prefer others who are unlike themselves, since this will lead to a baby that has the best of both worlds.
Some Western authorities disaggregate into two main components, the altruistic and the narcissistic. This view is represented in the works of Scott Peck, whose work in the field of applied psychology explored the definitions of love and evil. Peck maintains that love is a combination of the “concern for the spiritual growth of another,” and simple narcissism. In combination, love is an activity, not simply a feeling.
Healing of the body is accomplished through restoration of damaged cells to normal function. It is the process by which cells regenerate and repair. Healing incorporates both the removal and replacement of damaged areas in the body.
Living organs will heal using a combination of regeneration and repair. Regeneration occurs when damaged cells are replaced by the same cell structure that was originally present. Repair is the process by which injured areas are replaced with scar tissue, a natural part of the body’s reaction to wounding or injury that is deeply correlated with healing.
In order for an injury to be healed by regeneration, the cell type that was destroyed will replicate. This process occurs by use of a cellular framework along which to grow known as collagen. Collagen is the main component of all connective tissue that guides cell growth. It continues to exist even when the cells around it are damaged.
The existing cells replicate, using the collagen framework as a guide, eventually bringing the damaged area of the body back to normal. After regeneration is complete, the damage to the original cell area is undetectable. Ultimately, a scar made of collagen containing a small number of assistive healing cells is left.