WHICH IS THE LARGEST NATURAL FLOWER GARDEN IN THE WORLD?

The Dubai Miracle Garden, occupying over 780,000 sq feet, is the world's largest natural flower garden with over 150 million flowers and plants. The flowers are maintained with treated wastewater through a drip irrigation method, with an average of 757,082 litres of water used per day. The Dubai municipality re treats the grey water of the city and sends it directly to the Garden, where it is re-filtered and converted into high-quality water for watering. The Garden holds three Guinness World Records - world's largest vertical garden, world's biggest flower structure (Airbus A380 flower structure) and world's tallest topiary-supported sculpture (59 foot Mickey Mouse topiary). Other floral works of art include the Floating Lady, Floral Clock, Sunflower Field, Smurfs Village, Floral Castle, among others. It is also home to the Dubai Butterfly Garden, the world's largest and the region's first indoor butterfly garden and sanctuary for over 15,000 butterflies from 26 species.

The concept of the first miracle garden project was formed under an agreement between Dubailand and the Dubai Properties Group destination. The project development was done under an agreement with Akar Landscaping and Agriculture Company,led by Jordanian businessman Abdel Naser Rahhal. The cost of the project was estimated at AED 40 million (US$11 million).

The Dubai Miracle garden has achieved three Guinness World Records. In 2013, it was declared as the world's largest vertical garden. Currently an Airbus A380 flower structure in the garden is listed by Guinness World Records as the biggest flower structure in the world. The 18 metres (59 ft) topiary of Mickey Mouse, which weighs almost 35 tonnes, is the tallest topiary supported sculpture in the world.

Credit : Wikipedia 

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HOW TO CREATE A SMALL BUTTERFLY PARK AT HOME?

Creating a little butterfly patch in the garden at home will help you understand butterflies better and their importance to the ecosystem

Do you love butterflies? Have you ever observed them closely? Flitting from one flower to another, these fascinating creatures add beauty, colour and drama to the natural world. But they also serve an important purpose. Extremely sensitive to changes in the environment, butterflies act as indicators of a healthy ecosystem. If you watch them keenly, they can tell you a lot about the biodiversity in your region.

The world is home to over 20,000 different species of butterflies and India has over 1,500. But many of these are under threat of extinction due to habitat loss, environmental pollution and climate change. Some of these pretty creatures have disappeared from our cities altogether. The IUCN has classified 43 butterfly species in India as endangered.

By planting and protecting indigenous native plants and trees, we can bring back the butterflies, experts say.

If you have a wild patch in your garden or backyard. this could be the ideal place for a butterfly park. All you need to do is, ensure the area has a water body, a sunlit area, a shady area and host and nectar plants. Host plants

These act as lifelines for the butterflies. They lay eggs on the host plant and the caterpillars feed on the leaves. These plants provide nutrition to the hungry caterpillars. Without host plants, butterflies would not visit your garden. One of the common and easy-to-find host plants is the curry leaf. which attracts the beautiful common mormon butterfly.

If you can plant lemon or any plant belonging to the citrus variety, you can attract a number of butterflies in the  swallowtail family.

 Nectar plants

If host plants nourish caterpillars, nectar plants provide food for adult butterflies. Butterflies have a sharp sense of smell and they can spot colours from afar, so they are attracted to fragrant and colourful flowers, which are also a good source of nectar for them. From marigolds to ixora, most flowering plants can attract butterflies. If you don't plan to buy them from a nursery. even a common red hibiscus will do: as it attracts the brightly-coloured danaid egafly butterfly. Even the common milkweed and lantana are excellent sources of nectar for butterflies.

Puddling

If your garden does not include a natural waterbody. you could create a muddy. wet patch by watering an area frequently. Or, you could place a plastic sheet under this muddy spot to manage moisture level.Spread sand along the sides of the muddy place along with leaf litter from time to time. Butterflies, especially males, visit such damp areas to get their daily dose of water, minerals and essential chemicals. This is known as 'mud-puddling.’

Avoid pesticides

 Do not spray pesticide in your garden. This will keep away all the butterflies.

Allow weeds

Do not pluck out grass and small herbs and weeds in your garden as these attract a large number of small butterflies. Maintain a wild patch as it is. You could also reach out to the nearest Butterfly Park in your city to learn more about the native plants in your region and the butterflies they can attract.

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How many watts is a lightning strike?

Lightning is a natural electrical discharge created by imbalances between a cumulonimbus cloud and the ground or within itself. Lightning is pure electricity involving small particles with positive and negative charges that pull toward each other like the north and south ends of magnets. Lightnings are scary and of course dangerous, but it is a subject of fascination for scientists. During thunderstorms, scientists  witness a lot of lightning.  On an average, scientists have mapped, there are about 100 lightnings per second worldwide.That's a whopping number. Imagine the amount of energy that's shooting up from the clouds. Each bolt can contain up to one billion volts of electricity. This means a single lightning flash has enough energy to light a 100-watt bulb for three months!  So, How many homes could a lightning bolt power? Every lightning bolt on Earth in one year, captured perfectly with no loss of energy, would contain about 4*10^17 joules of energy. Thus, all the lightning in the entire world could only power 8% of US households. Human body can tolerate a maximum of between 20,000 and 50,000 volts, which might prove to be lethal. In most cases, a person's heart will stop after being struck by lightning, so the key to survival is having someone nearby who can administer CPR. Even if you survive, a lightning strike will have long-lasting effects on your body, including memory issues, muscle soreness and changes in mood.

People often confuse lightning with thunder. To put it simply, lightning is electricity; thunder is sound. In other words, lightning is the sudden flash of light spotted in the sky, while thunder is the roaring, cracking sound that is commonly heard during thunderstorms. And because light travels faster than sound, lightning is seen before thunder can be heard.

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When do glow worms glow?



The glow worm is not really a worm at all. It is a firefly in an early stage of development called the larval stage. Most adult fireflies never eat because they did all their eating when they were larvae. They hide during the daytime among the vegetation. After dark, the female climbs up plant stems and the top of her abdomen glows. The light from a larva’s glowing body attracts tiny flies and mosquitoes for the larva to eat.



The Waitomo Caves in New Zealand house a memorable type of glow worm. Tourists entering the Glowworm Grotto in small boats see thousands of lights on the cave ceiling. The glow worms look like stars in a night sky. If you cough or use a camera flash, the lights instantly go off. But wait quietly for a few minutes and they flicker back on, until the cave-ceiling ‘sky’ is again filled with ‘stars’.










Fact File:



Woodworm, the larvae of the furniture beetle, cause lots of damage to timber both in buildings and in the wild. The damage is evident from the holes they leave behind.




 



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When do bees make honey?



Bees constantly make honey because it serves them as food. So the whole process of making honey is a way of storing up food for the bee colony. The first thing a bee does is visit flowers and drinks the nectar. Then it carries the nectar home in the honey sac. This is a bag like enlargement of the digestive tract just in front of the bee’s stomach. There is a valve that separates this section from the stomach.



The first step in the making of the honey takes place while the nectar is in the bee’s honey sac. The sugars found in the nectar undergo a chemical change. The next step is to remove a large part of the water from the nectar. This is done by evaporation, which takes place because of the heat of the hive, and by ventilation. Honey stored in the honeycombs by honeybees has so much water removed from the original nectar that it will keep almost forever! The honey is put into honeycombs to ripen, and to serve as the future food supply for the colony. Honeys differ in taste and appearance, depending on the source of the nectar.










Fact File:



Honey is removed from the hive by various methods. It may be squeezed from the comb by presses, or it may be sold in the combs cut from the hive. Most honey, however, is removed from the combs by a machine known as ‘a honey extractor’.




 



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