I forgot to mention that all of the photos here on the Nature Assassin blog are now linked to their larger counterparts on Picasa. So click away for seven glorious megapixels of detail! That's right, SEVEN!

Ok, so seven isn't that many, but it still looks cool enlarged.

Update Schmupdate

Yes, the season of suck-ass has begun here in the Midwest. If it weren't for holiday lights, Chicago would look like The Swamps of Sadness. You know what I'm talking about.

Thank god for our beloved tropical and/or evergreen plants! If you can't get any place equatorial, then its time to hit your local greenhouses, conservatories, or any closed ecological system to get a good humanizing dose of plant life. I don't know about you, but when I see lush greenery and smell warm, humid dirt, I feel totally renewed.

New pink bracts on an Anthurium

New growth on Leptinella squalida 'Platt's Black'

New leaves on Monstera deliciosa

And then there are, of course, terrariums. What could be better than a whiff from your own miniature biosphere? Unless of course you're growing a lush crop of botyritis, which doesn't have the greatest smell, as I have discovered. But I digress. Look, gametophytes!

And moss! The arrow on your left indicates some unidentified volunteer spikemoss (selaginella), and the arrow on the right points to new growth from cultivated Kyoto moss. The rest is algae, which is doing terrifically well considering that I am making every effort to kill it. Don't worry, algae, as soon as I get my hands on some Physan, it will be your turn for a dose of delicious murder.

Well, that's all for now. Here's hoping that your houseplants are bringing you lots of happiness.


Dirty Book Club, Pt. 2

Title: The Complete Book of Cacti & Succulents: The definitive practical guide to cultivation, propagation, and display
Author: Terry Hewitt
Published: 1993, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Format: Lightly laminated and GODDAMN GIANT, this book does not mess around when it comes to cactus know-how. The cacti and succulents that the book covers (there are approximately 1000 A.S.* of said specimens) are not organized into little tidbits of repetitive categorical rhetoric; instead they are each discussed in their own paragraph. Informational organization is sacrificed for just a few precious nuggets of highly specific advice, and in addition to the plant profiles, there are many chapters dedicated to the history and biology of cacti and succulents.

Pictures: THEY RULE. If there are any categorical errors in this book, then 1) whatev because Terry Hewitt knows a lot more about this stuff than do I, and 2) I don’t care because even if they’re wrong, the pictures still FUCKING RULE.

Nominal organization: Like I said… randomly arranged. It is alphabetical by Latin name, thank Jesus.

Plant background info: Sweet! There’s random inclusion about the history and geographical origin of any particular plant. The radical part is the segment titled “Anatomy and Discovery,” which spans pages 10-25.

Plant care info: Like I SAID.

Display/decoration info: Just right.


Notes: Could be better organized and give more information on each plant ; pictures are spectacular and format has great appeal. Get it! It will be an awesome book to peruse in many, many situations.

*AS.; ass-loads.