Friday, September 21, 2012

Sophomore Shenanigans

Hello readers!
Sorry I've been MIA lately. The beginning of my second year of college is proving to be much more busy than I expected it to be. My excursions into horticulture are much different than they were last year, and this, along with my other classes and extra curriculars, have been keeping me on fast forward for the past three weeks. On top of my course work, every Saturday for all three weeks of the semester so far has been a football game which I'm required to rehearse for and play at for marching band. Needless to say, I've had few breaks.
The little break I have now before tomorrow's football game is the little window of time I've found to write.
Like I said before, this semester's horticulture courses are nothing like last semester. Instead of work in the greenhouse, this class is completely plant identification. Our labs consist of excursions outside around campus, learning the Latin and common names of plants. We then have to memorize these names and are quizzed every week. It's pretty tough work, but I've managed to get by pretty well so far. We have midterms next week already, so we'll see how the 20 plant identification goes. Thankfully the class is broken into sections and the final exam isn't cumulative. Instead, it's broken into herbaceous plants and woody plants, with another section that hasn't been quite determined yet for once it's to cold and snowy out for identifying plants outside to be effective.
The one setback to my year so far has been my other requirements to the horticulture major, algebra in particular. I've never been very good at math, so college algebra, a class I'm required to take to enter into the college that offers the horticulture major, has been very difficult for me. Chemistry is going somewhat better, but it's a hard class to keep track of with everything else happening.
With that update, I'll leave you with some pictures of the plants we've been identifying in class.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Back to School!

After many muscle aches, terrible allergies, and many long, hot days on the game field, I've managed to survive my second pre-season "spat camp" for marching band. Now that I've slept it off, it's time to go back to school. In the morning I'll be back in the greenhouse for my "Woody and Herbaceous Plants" class. I'm actually really excited that it's my first class of the new semester.
On the downside, my books (combined) weigh 8.8lbs and have 2,433 pages. I did, however, start reading the authors notes in "Herbaceous Perennial Plants" by Allan M. Armitage tonight and really loved what he wrote. I'll leave you with a snippet before I turn in for the evening.

"On the Meaning of Gardening"
"When gardeners are asked to describe reasons for gardening, three words emerge time and again: therapeutic, creative and exciting...
Therapeutic, because of the feeling that all is well with the world when our hands are in Mother Earth. Therapeutic because when a seed is sown, a cutting rooted, or seedling planted, we have accomplished something important.
Creative, because artistry is an inescapable part of gardening... Each grouping creates vistas of beauty. We do not require a degree in landscape architecture to create such beauty; all we need is the simple love of gardening.
Exciting is a word seldom attributed to gardening. But is it not exciting to watch a garden change with time? To watch Asarum, wild ginger, bull through the soil in early spring, anticipate the popping of the buds of a balloon flower, and anticipate the magic of the re-emergence of resurrection flower, is truly exciting."

I really loved this. I did skip a few sentences, so I apologize. But I'm writing this post from my iPhone so it's much harder to type than on my computer.
Happy September all!