Taking my work home with me?!

After a day of working in our research plots in the fall I often find weed seeds in my pockets, shoes, and even in my hair. Today we were pulling our final Palmer amaranth plants from two of our studies in Middleville, MI, where we have been studying the growth and development and potential control …

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Everyone Wants a Hero

Everyone wants a hero. But our approach to finding them is a bit skewed. Commonly we look to politics for our heroes; consistently, we’re let down. Former U.S. President Bill Clinton has been hailed as one of the more brilliant minds, at least in a political arena, of our time. The former governor and talented saxophonist …

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Nobels for Higgs and Englert

Congratulations to Peter Higgs and François Englert on their Nobel prize. A bit of background from an earlier post How the Higgs boson became the Higgs boson: IIRC, I met Peter Higgs in Erice in 1990. He was quite a nice fellow, but the story below by Steve Weinberg illustrates how capricious is the allocation …

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Enlightening Conversation

Two 79 year-old wise gents got together recently for a conversation that would be worthy of forty minutes of your life to view. Bill Moyers and Wendell Berry’s conversation was recorded and broadcast on Moyers and Company this weekend and is now available here for viewing online. This one-on-one conversation was taped at Kentucky’s St. …

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A Matter of Scale

I would be hard pressed to choose between my two favorite authors these days. You’ve been hearing about and from Colin Tudge and have heard, not infrequently, from Rebecca Solnit. Today she published another fervent, prosaic piece on the challenge of climate change The Age of Inhuman Scale: On the ‘Bigness’ of Climate Change…. Some …

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Gras List

Now that “food songs month” is behind us it’s time to get serious again in the Thornapple blog. And so to demonstrate just how serious we can be, we turn from the hit list to the grass list. This turn of mind was brought on by John’s comment to the last entry in food songs …

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A Book of Possibilities

Perhaps my favorite book on the state of our food system is Colin Tudge’s Feeding People is Easy. Tudge a scientist and writer has been a regular contributor to the British publication, Resurgence, which I have written about recently. In that recent issue he has a short piece that introduces the reader to his newest book: Why …

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A Limited View of Protection

A parent naturally tries to protect her/his child. They feel a responsibility to do so. It is a measure of the person how well they protect their own. In the Quest for Security by Stiglitz and Kaldor introduced in last week’s blog, one sees a rebuttal to the idea of protection, one that argues that individuality is …

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