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Chapter I How To Identify Trees There are many ways in which the problem of identifying trees may be approached. The majority attempt to recognize trees by their leaf characters. Leaf characters, however, do not differentiate the trees during the other half of the year when they are bare. In this chapter the characterizations are based, as far as possible, on peculiarities that are evident all year round. In almost every tree there is some one... more...

WAYS OF NATURE I was much amused lately by a half-dozen or more letters that came to me from some Californian schoolchildren, who wrote to ask if I would please tell them whether or not birds have sense. One little girl said: "I would be pleased if you would write and tell me if birds have sense. I wanted to see if I couldn't be the first one to know." I felt obliged to reply to the children that we ourselves do not have sense enough to know... more...

WILD FLOWERS WATER-PLANTAIN FAMILY (Alismaceae) Broad-leaved Arrow-head Sagittaria latifolia (S. variabilis) Flowers—White, 1 to 1-1/2 in. wide, in 3-bracted whorls of 3, borne near the summit of a leafless scape 4 in. to 4 ft. tall. Calyx of 3 sepals; corolla of 3 rounded, spreading petals. Stamens and pistils numerous, the former yellow in upper flowers; usually absent or imperfect in lower pistillate flowers. Leaves: Exceedingly... more...

UNDERTHE MAPLES I THE FALLING LEAVES The time of the falling of leaves has come again. Once more in our morning walk we tread upon carpets of gold and crimson, of brown and bronze, woven by the winds or the rains out of these delicate textures while we slept. How beautifully the leaves grow old! How full of light and color are their last days! There are exceptions, of course. The leaves of most of the fruit-trees fade and wither and fall... more...

The Freedom of the Black-faced Ram   n the top of Ringwaak Hill the black-faced ram stood motionless, looking off with mild, yellow eyes across the wooded level, across the scattered farmsteads of the settlement, and across the bright, retreating spirals of the distant river, to that streak of scarlet light on the horizon which indicated the beginning of sunrise. A few paces below him, half-hidden by a gray stump, a green juniper bush, and... more...


PREFACE Mushrooms and their extensive and profitable culture should concern every one. For home consumption they are a healthful and grateful food, and for market, when successfully grown, they become a most profitable crop. We can have in America the best market in the world for fresh mushrooms; the demand for them is increasing, and the supply has always been inadequate. The price for them here is more than double that paid in any other... more...

PREFACE. At the present time there is a growing desire to patronise perennial plants, more especially the many and beautiful varieties known as "old-fashioned flowers." Not only do they deserve to be cultivated on their individual merits, but for other very important reasons; they afford great variety of form, foliage, and flower, and compared with annual and tender plants, they are found to give much less trouble. If a right selection is made... more...

INTRODUCTION. This book is intended for those who, though ignorant on the subject, desire to know something about mushrooms. The first question which such an one asks upon finding a mushroom is, “What is its name?” If there is no one near to tell him, then follows the second inquiry, “How can I find it out for myself?” If wild flowers were concerned, Gray’s little book, “How the Plants Grow,” could... more...

To this day it is hard to understand how any eyes could have found them, they were so perfectly hidden. I was following a little brook, which led me by its singing to a deep dingle in the very heart of the big woods. A great fallen tree lay across my path and made a bridge over the stream. Now, bridges are for crossing; that is plain to even the least of the wood folk; so I sat down on the mossy trunk to see who my neighbors might be, and what... more...

CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION I think that some of you have been with me at Willow Farm before to-day. When we were there we went into the farmer's fields in early spring, and saw the men and horses at work with ploughs and harrows. A little later on we saw some of the crops sown, such as barley and turnips. In summer we were in the hay-and corn-fields, and later still we saw the ricks being made.To-day we are at Willow Farm again, and I want to show... more...