oldest living trees

Herb of the Week-Ginkgo

Common names

Bai Guo
Ginkgo Biloba
Ginkgo Nut
Maidenhair Tree

The famous herbal plant the ginkgo biloba L. or the gingko tree is the only extant member of the Ginkgoaceae family of plants, which used to contain many other species - that are all extinct now. The gingko herb existed in the Chinese mainland for more than 200 million years; it has a long historical and traditional use as an herbal remedy in the Chinese system of medication. Europeans were first introduced to the ginkgo plant in the year 1730. In the west, the gingko attained its fame as a popular ornamental tree in parks and gardens, where it is still used in this role in cultivated gardens all around the world. The gingko is a rather hardy plant and its hardiness such that wild populations of the plant are even seen along heavily trafficked streets in some major cities of the American continent. Since at least 2800 B.C., the Chinese have valued the fleshy seeds of the gingko for their medicinal properties; traditional Chinese medication used the seeds in many remedies for a wide variety of conditions. The plant can be considered a living fossil as it belongs to an ancient family of plants, this extant fossil plant has gained a reputation in western medicine during the past forty years - remedies made from the leaves of the gingko are gaining recognition in the west. The gingko is mostly taken in a highly processed form, contrary to the way the majority of herbs are used today, ginkgo leaves are almost always used in the form of a concentrated and standardized ginkgo biloba extract or GBE in short - the fresh leaves are almost never used. Europeans have popularized the use of this standardized gingko extract in treating circulatory system related disorders. The beneficial effects of the gingko gauged by the fact that physicians in Germany, in the year 1988, prescribed approximately 5.4 million prescriptions for GBE to patients - this number is higher than the prescription for any other medication. Germany has also permitted the sale of GBE as an over the counter or OTC medication in drug stores around the country.

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Death Cannot

This is for @upthenorthmountain, and I want to state for the record that it is all her fault :P This started as an anonymous fic in her inbox, because she promised that she could handle the angst when I told her I had an idea that would make everyone would hate me. But then life got out of control and I never finished the story, so I collected the bits and rewrote them a bit and added a conclusion. And I’m very sorry, in advance, please direct complaints to @upthenorthmountain because did I mention that this is her fault? This is her fault (also it is dedicated to her, thanks for putting up with my plot bunnies, Anna <3)

EDIT: Also, this fic has a short epilogue–Reunion.

  • Death Cannot 
  • Rating: G
  • Words: 4025
  • Warning: Character death
  • KA Harvest Fest Prompt: Haunting
  • “Death cannot stop true love. All it can do is delay it for a while.” - The Princess Bride

Kristoff crouched down on the floor and surveyed the area under the bed critically. “No monsters here,” he announced.

A chubby little finger pointed to the closet. He got up with a grunt and went to open it, revealing a row of brightly colored dresses, a few shelves of folded clothes, an overflowing bin of blocks and other toys. Kristoff solemnly examined them all.

“No monsters here either,” he said, but he left the light on anyway.

The little girl in the crib was three and a half, her red hair just long enough to form two little pigtails. It was very important, he had learned, for her hair to be in pigtails before bed. Ella’s hair had an amazing capacity for knots, and there had been a few times when he’d worried that he’d be forced it cut it off. Kristoff stroked a hand over her head. He bent down to kiss her forehead and tucked up her blanket.

“You’re always safe,” he promised. “There’s someone watching over you.”

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The trees shadowed in the second half of this are the bristlecone pine forest, some of the oldest organisms on Earth. Let’s let the caption cover this one:

The Eastern Sierra Mountain Range offers an extremely diverse range of unique natural features, from some of the oldest living trees in the world to extraordinary desert arches. Beyond its incredible terrain, this area of California also offers stunning, vivid views of the Milky Way and the Night Sky.

Its crazy to think that the Galaxy can be captured with this much detail, only a few hours away from Los Angeles and San Francisco. I hope that seeing some of this footage with influence more people to get out there any witness the magic of the night sky. I have met people in SF and LA that have never seen the Milky Way in their entire life. Why not?! Its within such a close reach!

Having been born and raised in California, I have a special affinity for the Eastern Sierra region. It was one of the first areas that I featured in my early photography projects. I wanted to re-visit this beautiful region and showcase some of my favorite views through Timelapse photography.