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Glass in the Garden

Vitreous Parallel Botany
in the Show Me State


I used to think I might be the only fan of Leo Lionni's exquisitely eccentric 1977 book Parallel Botany, which describes fanciful plants such as Tirils, Giraluna, and Woodland Tweezers which by all rights ought to exist; perhaps some time before the singularity, advances in biotechnology will permit us to remedy these lacunæ of terrestrial biology. Until that day, perhaps the next best thing is a stroll through a garden enhanced by artist Dale Chihuly's glass sculptures which seem to have inflitrated our reality from an alien biosphere in a universe next door.

I happened to see an exhibition of this work at the Missouri Botanical Garden in St. Louis in May 2006. So well do these alien flora blend in with the exotic terrestrial species in the climate controlled greenhouse that you leave the exhibition wondering how many you missed. The frog is not made of glass.

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Obligatory Gateway Arch Photos



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by John Walker
May, 2006

This document and the photographs it contains are in the public domain.

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