Flooded Planet

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Hydroponic Happy

Hydroponic Happy

The three basil ladies you see here started out in life from a very tough place. The attending gardener was doing his best to kill them. I had placed them in a gallon jug container outside with the micro-nutrient mixture I use for my hydroponic efforts. The jug was just a discarded water container, made of plastic, of course, and mostly clear. Me neglecting to darken it so that the algae would not grow was a big mistake. Algae is an amazing organism in that, with a little water and sun, its abundant and rapid growth is virtually guaranteed. I would imagine that the high nutrient content in the water did nothing to help that situation, as well.

By the end of the first day, the algae was already growing in the jug, which was probably no big deal for the moment, but the basil  were noticeably suffering, probably mostly from the shock of being separated from the parent plant abruptly, by way of my scissors. I think a lot of it had to do with the way in which I cut them, leaving absolutely no root growth for them to begin life in a new environment with.  By the end of the second day, I counted the experiment as all but dead in the water (literally and figuratively).

However, life will find a way, and so it went with these three little ladies. I transferred their lifeless and wilted bodies into the three jars you see here, filling each about a third full with clean gravel, then another third of the way with the same micro-nutrient mix I was using outside (not the same stuff…it had been overtaken by the algae…just the same mixture). I placed them in my windowsill, and within a couple of days, they had bounced right back (the aluminum keeps the algae from getting a foothold).  You should see the root system on these plants now! Hundreds of tiny roots growing out of the portion of the plant that I initially cut from the parent. It’s really kind of amazing.

The peppers you see on the table beside the basil are also products of a hydroponic effort and with many more still on the way from the same plant, growing in nothing but expanded clay pellets for support, and the micro-nutrient mixture in which the pepper plants roots are quite happy.

I can safely say that, between my soil-based efforts versus the hydroponic-based planets, the soil-less stuff is winning magnificently. Not to mention that it’s just plain fun!

Evolution of Thought

Robert Scribbler wrote a post a few days ago referencing a new study that confirms the world’s oceans are heating up faster than the scientific community previously thought. Like him, I have said that it does seem a prevalent message within the climate science community—this revelation that events are occurring faster than was earlier established.

Worrisome in the extreme, of course, since it means that we, Humanity, have less time than we assumed to change course, our small efforts to fix our Climate Change Conundrum appearing even less significant when viewed against the looming backdrop of a planet transforming itself into something we may be unable to tamp down. What awaits us all, if we are unable to fix it, is runaway weather. This is the idea that self-reinforcing feedback loops will pick up their own paces, causing weather events that are simply no longer predictable, and with a ferociousness never before seen. If that doesn’t scare you, I can’t imagine what would.

But we’re starting to feel that fear by way of catastrophes that seem to follow closely on the heels of one another. There’s little idle time, if any, between one horrific headline and the next. Floods, fires and famines crowd each other out as one presses in while the other reluctantly exits off the page.

What is Climate Change, after all, but the observable effects of Nature sort of turning themselves upside down, with Humanity offered the court side seat, watching with dismay the consequences of our unbridled growth. But then, many things that we’d readily term as firmly right side up are, in fact, most definitely turned upside down.

What we define as Progress is actually just the piling up of Entropy. Entropy is pollution. It’s the detritus we leave behind us in our march toward an unseen destination. The new car becomes a fixture in the junk yard. The shiny new building is eventually knocked down and hauled off in large scoops to the landfill. Civilization is riddled with the deep holes into which we dump our discarded wealth.

Entropy is the by-product we pump into the atmosphere every single day, 24/7, without let up, heating up the planet more and more, with no end in sight. And how can there be? There are 7 billion of us on this endless roller coaster that isn’t stopping, even as some of its riders beg to get off. It’s inertia. It’s momentum. The heavier the object, the longer it takes to bring it to a halt. Modern day civilization is the heaviest object we can imagine, but it cannot be stopped…and it’s the one thing that must be abruptly reined in if we are to have any kind of a chance for continued and prolonged existence into the future. Decisive action is long overdue.

Evolution of thought is the idea that we have to fundamentally change the mindset we’ve all been taught to embrace since the time we were tiny little children. The whole thing is encased in one word – Capitalism. The basic tenet is this: Grow or die. This is why we are taught to consume, and why we are called Consumers. We’re supposed to wear the label like a badge of honor. This is why we go to work and get our checks and buy with impunity all the things the advertisers tell us we must have in order to fit in. So we grow, so that we will not die.

But we all die, individually. That’s always been the case. The difference now is that we may all die, as a species, which has also always been the case, we’ve just never been faced it in any concrete way. Every species that ever roamed the planet has eventually gone extinct (or is currently in that process). When viewed from the perspective of environmental factors, Climate Change may simply be the stressor that is going to spell the end for Humankind.

In the meantime, the world’s oceans are heating up faster than the scientific community had previously assumed, and there’s less time to fix it. Paradoxically, the growth I see unfolding, both locally and globally, is unprecedented. Civilization continues to sprawl, largely unaware, or unaccepting of the dangers directly ahead.

I suspect that, in the end, we simply may not “get it.” The oceans of the world are a reflection of this.

Sincere thanks for stopping by!



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