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FutureStarrBird Ox Plant
The beauty of nature inspires strong feelings. The power of nature is on us every day, but most of us don’t stop to think about the importance of what’s around us. These plants, found all across the world, are living examples of nature’s immense power. The plants, themselves, are what we see.Plants of the genus Arctium have dark green leaves that can grow up to 70 cm (28 in) long. They are generally large, coarse and ovate, with the lower ones being heart-shaped. They are woolly underneath. The leafstalks are generally hollow. Arctium species generally flower from July through to October. Burdock flowers provide essential pollen and nectar for honeybees around August when clover is on the wane and before the goldenrod starts to bloom.
The taproot of young burdock plants can be harvested and eaten as a root vegetable. While generally out of favour in modern European cuisine, it is popular in East Asia. Arctium lappa is known as niúbàng (ç‰›è’¡) in Chinese, the same name having been borrowed into Japanese as gobÅ, and is eaten in Japan, Korea and Taiwan. In Korean, burdock root is called u-eong (ìš°ì—‰) and sold as tong u-eong (í†µìš°ì—‰), or "whole burdock". Plants are cultivated for their slender roots, which can grow up to about one metre long and two centimetres across. Burdock root is very crisp and has a sweet, mild, or pungent flavour with a little muddy harshness that can be reduced by soaking julienned or shredded roots in water for five to ten minutes. The roots have been used as potato substitutes in Russia.
After taking his dog for a walk one day in the late 1940s (1948), George de Mestral, a Swiss inventor, became curious about the seeds of the burdock plant that had attached themselves to his clothes and to the dog's fur. Under a microscope, he looked closely at the hook system that the seeds use to hitchhike on passing animals aiding seed dispersal, and he realized that the same approach could be used to join other things together. His work led to the development of the hook and loop fastener, which was initially sold under the Velcro brand name. Bird ox is the most annoying stuff you can find outside. It sticks to all your clothes and your animals’ fur. My house is surrounded by fields and a little bit of woods, so there’s an abundance of this plant all around my house. It doesn’t really grow in my yard, except for around the edges. For some reason, my dogs just love finding this stuff. Instead of staying in the middle of our big yard and going to the bathroom there, they venture out to all the sides and even into the fields. Most of the time, they come back with bird ox all over their bellies and feet. (Source: medium.com)