Sunday, June 25, 2006

Carlos is a student finishing his thesis on orchids. He's become remarkably well-versed on the scores of different orchids in and around Carmen Pampa -- including one with flowers only 2 milimeters across and another that flowers once a year for a few timid hours (and will fall over and die if it's touched.)

He took Ginger, Mike and I on a tour the other morning. No esta el tiempo por flores he told us, but we came across a few delicate examples anyway. And most of all we chatted in Espanglish and learned about the craziest orchids he'd come across: one that resembles a lady bee's, um, lady parts so that the male bee will -- in a too-good-to-be-true twist on the birds and the bees story -- pollinate the orchid by trying to copulate with it. Oh, and another that gives off the exact pheromone of a specific male insect so that the neighborhood male insects of that species think somebody new is trying to elbow in on their territory -- the resulting kerfuffle between the miffed males and the crafty orchids results in a happy pollination.


At Mon Jun 26, 12:08:00 AM CDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hola Zac,
I've spent a little time catching up on your site. What a fascinating diary you have! Hope to see you soon.

Cousin Andy


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