An Orchard Invisible

A Natural History of Seeds


Author: Jonathan Silvertown

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 0226757803

Category: Science

Page: 224

View: 5338

The story of seeds, in a nutshell, is a tale of evolution. From the tiny sesame that we sprinkle on our bagels to the forty-five-pound double coconut borne by the coco de mer tree, seeds are a perpetual reminder of the complexity and diversity of life on earth. With An Orchard Invisible, Jonathan Silvertown presents the oft-ignored seed with the natural history it deserves, one nearly as varied and surprising as the earth’s flora itself. Beginning with the evolution of the first seed plant from fernlike ancestors more than 360 million years ago, Silvertown carries his tale through epochs and around the globe. In a clear and engaging style, he delves into the science of seeds: How and why do some lie dormant for years on end? How did seeds evolve? The wide variety of uses that humans have developed for seeds of all sorts also receives a fascinating look, studded with examples, including foods, oils, perfumes, and pharmaceuticals. An able guide with an eye for the unusual, Silvertown is happy to take readers on unexpected—but always interesting—tangents, from Lyme disease to human color vision to the Salem witch trials. But he never lets us forget that the driving force behind the story of seeds—its theme, even—is evolution, with its irrepressible habit of stumbling upon new solutions to the challenges of life. "I have great faith in a seed," Thoreau wrote. "Convince me that you have a seed there, and I am prepared to expect wonders." Written with a scientist’s knowledge and a gardener’s delight, An Orchard Invisible offers those wonders in a package that will be irresistible to science buffs and green thumbs alike.

Dinner with Darwin

Food, Drink, and Evolution


Author: Jonathan Silvertown

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022648923X

Category: Science

Page: 320

View: 731

What do eggs, flour, and milk have in common? They form the basis of waffles, of course, but these staples of breakfast bounty also share an evolutionary function: eggs, seeds (from which we derive flour by grinding), and milk have each evolved to nourish offspring. Indeed, ponder the genesis of your breakfast, lunch, or dinner, and you’ll soon realize that everything we eat and drink has an evolutionary history. In Dinner with Darwin, join Jonathan Silvertown for a multicourse meal of evolutionary gastronomy, a tantalizing tour of human taste that helps us to understand the origins of our diets and the foods that have been central to them for millennia—from spices to spirits. A delectable concoction of coevolution and cookery, gut microbiomes and microherbs, and both the chicken and its egg, Dinner with Darwin reveals that our shopping lists, recipe cards, and restaurant menus don’t just contain the ingredients for culinary delight. They also tell a fascinating story about natural selection and its influence on our plates—and palates. Digging deeper, Silvertown’s repast includes entrées into GMOs and hybrids, and looks at the science of our sensory interactions with foods and cooking—the sights, aromas, and tastes we experience in our kitchens and dining rooms. As is the wont of any true chef, Silvertown packs his menu with eclectic components, dishing on everything from Charles Darwin’s intestinal maladies to taste bud anatomy and turducken. Our evolutionary relationship with food and drink stretches from the days of cooking cave dwellers to contemporary crêperies and beyond, and Dinner with Darwin serves up scintillating insight into the entire, awesome span. This feast of soup, science, and human society is one to savor. With a wit as dry as a fine pinot noir and a cache of evolutionary knowledge as vast as the most discerning connoisseur’s wine cellar, Silvertown whets our appetites—and leaves us hungry for more.

A Table in the Wilderness

Forty Days of Forgiveness


Author: Thom Rock

Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers

ISBN: 1498218261

Category: Religion

Page: 190

View: 9774

The joyful premise at the heart of this book is that there is a table lavishly spread for all who hunger for forgiveness--the believer, the doubter, and the famished. The book's journey begins and ends with this assertion: not only is there a table of forgiveness set for us in the many wildernesses of life, there is a seat waiting for each and every one of us at that table. What matters is whether we take that seat and, if so, how we behave at the feast. Rooted in the notion of journeying, of setting out each day to discover some new vista along the many paths to the banquet hall of forgiveness, A Table in the Wilderness draws upon the wisdom of multiple religious traditions, as well as non-religious sources, in order to gain perspective on this long misunderstood subject. Readers are just as likely to encounter Dr. Seuss as they are to read the words of Sri Ramakrishna or Saint Augustine along the way. Anyone who has ever been hurt or has hurt another will find this book a helpful guide.

Business Ecology


Author: Joseph M Abe,David A. Bassett,Patricia E. Dempsey

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1136013296

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 256

View: 1148

Business ecology is a new field that synthesizes centuries of cultural wisdom, a close observation of natural systems, and proven business success strategies, such as strategic planning and total quality management. It emulates nature's systems design to provide a harmonious, relationship-oriented approach that reveals how your organization really works. This book applies these principles to help you integrate profitability, stakeholder relations, and environmental performance ¦ giving your organization the natural edge in emerging ecological economy. Business ecology measures not just financial but overall viability by revealing vital flows and relationships that sustain your business. It is a lens for seeing those intangible elements of your organization's design -- such as core values, value-creation cycles, and innovative thinking ¦ that are essential factors shaping its success. The Business Ecology Network (BEN), founded in 1995, is a catalyst for life-sustaining enterprise. BEN is a learning community for leaders and managers who want to apply a new way of thinking ¦ business ecology ¦ to create new, sustainable opportunities for their businesses and non profit organizations. Visit the BEN web page at

Monday Morning Musings

Java for the Soul


Author: Cindy Vance

Publisher: Author House

ISBN: 1468573667

Category: Religion

Page: 158

View: 1339

Monday Morning Musings, Java for the Soul serves up a cup of inspiration and encourages the reader to look beyond the bump and grind of working from 8-5 and shift the focus of making a living to making a life. This collection of reflections shares with the reader the scriptural truths that are nestled in our day-to-day routines and points out the relevance of God’s unchanging word in a fast paced and ever changing 21st century. Each morning begins with renewed mercies and an opportunity to discover those gifts that are woven into our routines while guiding the reader to look for the lesson. This side of heaven we need to understand that contentment is a peaceful place to be and the world that surrounds us is constant affirmation that there is a God and he cares about us. Each morning, arise, live abundantly, live well and live balanced.

News from the Invisible World

Or, Interesting Anecdotes of the Dead. Containing a Particular Survey of the Most Remarkable and Well-authenticated Accounts of Apparitions, Ghosts, Spectres, Dreams and Visions


Author: John Tregortha

Publisher: N.A



Page: 451

View: 860

The Orchard Keeper


Author: Cormac McCarthy

Publisher: Pan Macmillan

ISBN: 0330475002

Category: Fiction

Page: N.A

View: 2822

Set in a small, remote community in rural Tennessee in the years between the two world wars, The Orchard Keeper is an early classic from one of America's finest and most celebrated authors. It tells of John Wesley Rattner, a young boy, and Marion Sylder, an outlaw and bootlegger who, unbeknownst to either of them, has killed the boy's father. Cormac McCarthy's debut novel is a magnificent evocation of an American landscape, and of a lost American time.


The Heart of Holy Wisdom


Author: Todd Erick Pedersen

Publisher: Balboa Press

ISBN: 1452569967

Category: Poetry

Page: 178

View: 6496

As with the subtle starlight of the soul, Sophia: The Heart of Holy Wisdom is above all an uncovering of the sacred wisdom of the divine, as it is pervasively present everywhere within our world. Thus, here in this collection of original poetry in prose are themes such as the sublimity of nature, along with the weaving together of this world and the otherworld, and so the convergence of a genuine spirituality with our daily living, as an evocation of what it means to discover at last a home beneath the stars.

Reaching for the Invisible God

What Can We Expect to Find?


Author: Philip Yancey

Publisher: Zondervan

ISBN: 0310247306

Category: Religion

Page: 301

View: 7096

Author Philip Yancey asks the question: How does a relationship with God work? And then he answers it with an investigation that turns up surprising and satisfying answers about life and communication with an invisible God.