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A Brief History of Tea
A Brief History of Tea
The Birth of Tea in China According to legend, in 2737 BC, the Chinese Emperor Shen Nung was sitting beneath a tree while his servant boiled some drinking water, when a few leaves from the tree fell into the cooking pot. The tree was a Camellia sinensis (sinensis is Chinese for ‘of China’). Today there are over 3,000 different types of tea in the world and they are all produced from...
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Sunlight and Shade
Sunlight and Shade
On a hot summer's day, what could be better than sitting in the garden in the shade of your favourite tree, drinking a nice cup of tea or an ice cold beer? The obstruction of direct sunlight by trees can be a blessing when it provides a cool, shady area but it can also be a nuisance when it blocks the natural light to the main rooms in the house. Five Advantages of Shade The combination...
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The Paper We Vote On
The Paper We Vote On
Between two thirds and three quarters of us will vote in the General Election this week by placing an X on a piece of paper next to the name of our preferred candidate. But what is paper? How is it made? And how many times can it be recycled? A Short History of Paper Making Papyrus was the earliest form of paper, made from reeds in ancient Egypt some 3,000 years ago. Paper, as we think of...
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Ivy - Good, Bad or Indifferent
Ivy - Good, Bad or Indifferent
Ivy is much maligned but is it all bad or does it have some redeeming features? Ivy is our only native evergreen climber and it has two forms. When the ivy is juvenile it has the characteristic lobed ‘ivy shaped’ leaves that are particularly well adapted to living in low light conditions. When it is mature it produces side branches with elliptical leaves and flowering shoots. This...
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Trees, Bees and Honey
Trees, Bees and Honey
The best and most expensive honeys in the world are made from the nectar collected from trees. Manuka honey is made from the nectar of the flowering Manuka tree, which is native to, and grows only in New Zealand. Sidr honey comes from the Sidr tree which is native throughout Asia and Bashkir honey, comes from Linden forests growing high in the Ural Mountains in Russia. What is Honey? The...
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