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Epiphytic plants growing on a sheer vertical granitic wall of El Peñón de Guatapé, a rock formation in the region of Antioquia, Colombia.
Just about everywhere we look in the world, there is something beautiful to see. Each organism is a masterpiece and its relationship with others is beautiful. The bee is given nectar by the lavender while returning the favor by carrying pollen from one flower to the next. Biology is full of these mutually beneficial relationships, reminding us that—while we see the horrifying results of sin in death and suffering—life could not exist without cooperation between organisms.
Forest of Scalesia. Scalesia is a genus of plants in the Asteraceae family that is endemic to the Galápagos Islands.
In the Galapagos Islands there are several areas with dense mangroves. Mangroves and beach bells disperse thanks to their seeds dragged by ocean currents.
The genus name Glossopteris comes from the shape of these leaves: it means "tongue-shaped feather." These leaves are a typical fossil of Permian strata from continents of the southern hemisphere and were important for the development of the theory of continental drift. Specimen on display at the Chicago Field Museum of Natural History.
Candelabra Cactus. The flowers of this plant provide food for a species of Galapagos finches.
Opuntia Cactus: Opuntia is a genus that includes 200 species of cacti, all with broad, flat leaves. Of those species, only six grow in the Galapagos: Opuntia echios, Opuntia galapageia, Opuntia helleri, Opuntia insularis, Opuntia saxicola, Opuntia megasperma.
Fossil branches and leaves of an araucarian tree from the Cretaceous of the Crato Basin, Brazil. On display at the Paleontological Museum of Santana do Cariri
Flowering plants appear abruptly in the fossil record in Mesozoic strata. Here is an example of an exquisitely preserved sycamore-like leaf from the Cretaceous of Kansas. Specimen (several cm in size) on display at the Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago.
Stasis and plants: specimens of fossil maple leaves and fruit from the Miocene of Oregon. On display at the Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago
Trimerophytes were leafless vascular plants, with branches departing from the stem in a spiral pattern. This specimen containing multiple stems (several cm in size) is from the Devonian of Quebec, on display at the Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago.