asakiyume: (more than two)
Well well well. Common names get thrown about and applied pretty randomly, so maybe **some**one calls mountain laurel shad tree, but I'd misunderstood my father: he wasn't saying that mountain laurel = shad tree; he was saying that there's another tree that blooms at the same time that's called that.

Searching on Wikipedia, I find that the genus Amelanchier has several species that get called shad tree or shadbush (they also get called things like serviceberry, a name I know I hear a lot).

As you'll see, there's alder-leaved shadbush, lovely shadbush, downy shadbush ... pick a shadbush to suit your mood! Maybe red-twigged?

But don't confuse it with mountain laurel!

Mountain Shadbush

(source site)
asakiyume: (glowing grass)
On this day in Pen Pal, nothing particular happened, but in the note that Kaya wrote her mother on July 4, she mentioned the research station in W--, where she used to work. At the research station, they test and develop new strains of cash and subsistence crops, as well as work on plants for soil replenishment, etc.

In Timor-Leste, Seeds of Life does this work. Here are two crops that were developed in Baucau, Timor-Leste, and that are among 11 being tested with local farmers:

"Deep purple" sweet potato; photo by Alexia Skok

Red rice; photo by Alexia Skok

“[These] varieties are locally sourced and already popular among farming families for their taste and colour,” says Research Coordinator Luis Almeida.

Photos and quote from Kate Bevitt, "Music to the Tastebuds: Deep Purple Sweet Potato and Other Varieties Coming Soon" June 26, 2014.

Near me, similar work goes on at Cold Spring Orchard, which is a test orchard for the University of Massachusetts. Sometimes when you go there in the fall, you can taste-test new varieties of peaches or apples--sometimes they don't even have names yet, just numbers.

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