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Earth's oldest trees are almost unfathomably ancient

We can't get enough of this stunning piece of arboreal data visualization. Created by Vienna-based graphic designer Michæl Paukner, the interwoven lines of this chart connect over 20 of the world's oldest trees and clonal colonies to their geographic origins. Pictured above: Paukner's chart, bookended by a photo of … » 12/11/12 12:43pm 12/11/12 12:43pm

During World War I, fake trees for snipers would pop up overnight

The "O.P. Tree" was an Observation Post Tree deployed during World War I. Its "goal," as author Hanna Rose Shell explains in Hide and Seek, her newly published history of the relationship between camouflage and photography, "was to craft a mimetic representation of a tree-and not just any tree, but a particular tree… » 6/07/12 6:25am 6/07/12 6:25am

Cities of the Future Will Make a Place For Wilderness

All around the world, cities are spreading out into the surrounding land — but nature is unexpectedly asserting itself in the heart of the metropolises, as well. A number of carnivores are not just adapting to cities around the globe, but actually thriving. And meanwhile some urban trees can grow as much as eight… » 5/04/12 8:00am 5/04/12 8:00am

These Amazonian ants build one of the freakiest deathtraps in the…

The Amazonian tree known Hirtella physophora looks rather unassuming, but it is the site of several grisly spectacles. Amid its leaves and branches, an animal, a plant and a fungus conspire to create a nightmarish trap where trespassers become meals, robbers get the death penalty, and assassins are assassinated. » 5/03/12 8:00am 5/03/12 8:00am

Scientists still puzzled by a fractal discovered 500 years ago

In between painting the Mona Lisa and idly designing flying machines for fun, Leonardo Da Vinci occasionally got outside and looked up every now and again. Because he was Da Vinci, the moment he did, he discovered a new natural law. This one was about trees, and after five hundred years, scientists are still trying to… » 12/09/11 11:40am 12/09/11 11:40am

What happened to all those "Moon trees" whose seeds went into space?

Even if humanity never returns to the Moon, veterans of the lunar missions will still be around for hundreds, maybe even thousands of years. That's because the Apollo 14 astronaut Stuart Roosa brought hundreds of seeds with him to the Moon, and many of these were later planted to create the so-called Moon trees. The… » 2/11/11 1:00pm 2/11/11 1:00pm