Author - Alun Salt

Wollemia Nobilis in a small pot

The Wollemi Pine and Jurassic* Bark

"It's the equivalent of finding a Tyrannosaurus rex in your back yard,” said Jimmy Turner, Director of Horticultural Research at Dallas Arboretum. His words echoed those of . It's either a triumph of marketing or a...

Puppy and Wine

Dogs, blossom and wine

The life led by the ancients was rude and illiterate; still, as will be readily seen, the observations they made were not less remarkable for ingenuity than are the theories of the present day. Pliny the Elder Kamoun...

Heart-shaped potato

Go to work on a potato

I didn’t do modern history at school so my impression of the industrial revolution is largely a mish-mash of pop history and some misremembered Industrial Archaeology courses. What I do recall is that the emphasis...

Entrance to the seed vault

Schrödinger’s History (TIME 100)

How can you say something is historically important or not unless you observe it? What happens if you set up conditions where you intentionally cannot observe a site’s historical importance? I said in the opening...

Mendel's garden in St. Thomas's Abbey, Brno.

In search of the Platzgeist (TIME 100)

It’s easy to pin scientific credit on a person. He or she usually has a name on the key publication, but how do you credit a place? Science is a human activity, so is it just the humans that matter or are there...

A gift for the anti-Botanist

With a world full of fascinating life-forms, it’s always easy to find a gift for a botanist. There’s so many plants to choose from, but what can you get for a friend without green fingers? What can you get...