Sunday, March 5, 2023

Ice Flowers

Environmental & Science Education, STEM, Earth & Space Science, Earth Systems, Biodiversity, Nature, Art & Environment

Ed Hessler

On January 3, 2023 an event occurred on a plant at the Arnold Arboretum that was documented for us in this brief photo essay by William (Ned) Friedman, the director of the arboretum.

Nature and the ironclad rules of physics combined with biology to produce ice flowers of unique shape and beauty.

Friedman comments on an explanation which he finds unsatisfactory and develops his own hypothesis (to be tested) for how the flowers formed. He heard about the ice flowers on January 3 and went the next day. He found "dozens of ice flowers on the stems of these plants--looking a bit like ribbon candy--but made of ice. Totally amazing and most ephemeral." They reminded me of the sail of the Portuguese man o' war (Physalia physalis).

No comments:

Post a Comment