Close up of leaf with veins appearing as black silhouettes

It is my firm belief that plants are intelligent—that in fact, all life is infused with a creative intelligence. Life has to be intelligent to adapt, each form in its own way, to its own circumstances. To explore that belief, I set up an online conversation with Dr. Monica Gagliano, a brilliant plant scientist. The conversation didn’t go at all as planned. In my mind, I was going to speak with a world-renowned scientist about the intelligence and awareness of plants. Instead, we talked about darkness and light; about her being called by plants to go to Mexico and meditate in a room in total darkness for 39 days; of going intensely inward and then out to a stage with bright lights and...

Seeds in various stages of germination

Seeds are tiny, magical packets of latent energy and potential, ready to burst forth when conditions are right. They contain the very essence of Life itself: ancient wisdoms and future hopes, exquisitely designed to adapt and evolve as needs arise. Part of Earthfire’s mission is to be a seed center. Here we gather selections of what we would like to see to germinate, take root, and unfurl into the light; stories that educate, inspire, inform and embrace hope and action. We invite you to partake, swap and share them. May they all bear fruit. An incredible new discovery may uncover the mystery of the day dinosaurs died---and paints a vivid picture of what the Earth overcame to...

— by Susan Eirich, Ph.D. — We have a tiny cactus here in the office that I have had for years. It was being originally sold as a souvenir from Arizona. It was potted in a blue pot glued to a magnet and destined to become a refrigerator decoration. I couldn’t stand life being treated that way, so I rescued it. Over the years, it has had quite an adventurous life. When it first came, a round little ball the size of a quarter, it covered itself with dozens of tiny blooms year after year. How did it produce such amazing beauty and profusion from a bit of dry soil? Then one summer, when I put it out to enjoy the Idaho sun, apparently some mice came and threw it on the ground. They...

Cactus in a tiny pot

— by Susan Eirich, Ph.D. — I don’t quite know how to explain it. Maybe it is normal, but that little cactus I rescued from a souvenir shop (see The Cactus) is blooming again. It started blooming just before Easter (I thought of it as a thank you) and continued, bloom after huge bloom on this tiny plant, for three months before it went dormant. Then a few days ago I went to water it---and it was blooming again! As if it stopped just long enough to gather more strength and then burst forth once more. It not only burst into bloom, but the magnet glued to the pot---the very same magnet that was supposed to attach it to a refrigerator as a curiosity---had broken off, along with part of...

Tiny blooming cactus

— by Susan Eirich, Ph.D. — I saw it on a dark counter at a camping store. There were a couple of dozen little cactuses in tiny painted pots with a magnet attached. They were being sold as curiosities, to be placed on a refrigerator. They had been forced in a greenhouse (climate conditions manipulated to time their blooming) , and brought for sale just as they were starting to bloom. Life, raised for human’s frivolous and momentary pleasure. The chances of survival were slim, as their destiny was to be placed as a magnet on some appliance. It made me mad and sad and I bought one as a plant “rescue.” I didn’t know if it would survive a dark Idaho winter but at least I was giving...

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