Our news bulletins are released for Spring, Summer and Autumn each year. Some items from the Spring 2018 bulletin are given below.
2018 Spring Show
This will take place in the Atrium at Nailsea School on Saturday 7 April.
2018 Summer Show
This will take place in the Atrium at Nailsea School on Saturday 4 August.
These have not yet been chosen.
Eating Your 5-a-day
Most Society members, and in particular those with vegetable plots, will be closer to this target than the British average. But we have a long way to go to match our ancestors.
Excavations at a Stone Age site in the Middle East, dating from 780,000 years ago, show that the occupants (probably homo erectus) ate 55 different kinds of nut, seed, fruit and tuber. (With acknowledgements to New Scientist, 10/12/16)
Slow High Plants
Above 6000 metres in the Himalayas grow tiny and slow-growing cushion plants. Some have reached 1 centimetre in diameter, with roots 1 millimetre in diameter showing 20 annual growth rings. (With acknowledgements to New Scientist, 10/12/16)
Homer Simpson the Botanic Trailblazer
You never expected to see that said, but it is tru(ish)!
Back in 1999 (Series 11) Homer created a tomato/tobacco hybrid that he called tomacco, which proved intensely addictive to the citizens of Springfield and made him rich. A few years later in the real world, Rob Baur of Oregon wanted to replicate this feat. Using the techniques of a 1959 academic study, he successfully grafted tomato plants on to tobacco rootstock, and the leaves of what seemed a normal tomato plant contained nicotine, as determined by the local county analyst. Only one fruit developed, which Rob feared contained poisonous levels of nicotine, and he hasn’t taken the idea forward. The grafting is possible because both tomato and tobacco are members of the family Solanaceae. (Acknowledgements to “The Simpsons and Their Mathematical Secrets” by Simon Singh)