Geo-Joint: The Saguaro Cactus

The TeamAll, Geo-Joint0 Comments

The saguaro cactus, Carnegiea gigantea, can’t be missed. Not only are they everywhere in western design, symbolic of the desert landscape, but in real life, they are huge. The largest cactus in the United States, they can tower above the surrounding landscape, a bold form in a climate where the residents tend to be smaller, struggling in the blazing sun … Read More

Geo-Joint: No-snake zones

The TeamAll, Geo-Joint0 Comments

Being reptiles, snakes are cold-blooded. That doesn’t mean they’re out to kill you with nary a pang of guilt (though of course that could happen!), but it does mean that they need a climate that affords at least enough ambient heat to get themselves up and running for a sufficient portion of their day, season, or year. They do best … Read More

Geo-Joint: The Darien Gap

The TeamAll, Geo-Joint0 Comments

If you’re feeling like a major road trip, the longest point-to-point, motorable road you can undertake is the Pan-American Highway, a jaunt between Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, and Ushuaia, Argentina. That’s the length of two continents, for a total of close to 30,000 miles. But this long-drive record holder comes with a qualifier. Unfortunately, as you head south, the road sputters … Read More

Geo-Joint: The Science of Twinkle

The TeamAll, Geo-Joint0 Comments

For stargazers older than first-graders, it’s no news that stars are giant balls of flaming gas, just like our Mr. Sun. That they’re so tiny to our eyes only clarifies how very far away they are. We group them into convenient constellations for easy reference (and to illustrate great stories of the gods or creation myths), but of course, the … Read More

Geo-Joint: Official State Icons

The TeamAll, Geo-Joint0 Comments

California just named its official state fabric: denim. An official fabric? Really? Having been born in a hospital next to the original Levi Strauss factory in San Francisco, I kinda like the designation. But states have “official” items of many, many kinds. From rocks and mammals to flowers and food dishes, legislatures love to elevate the status of things in … Read More

Geo-Joint: The Curious Placement of the S.S. Warrimoo

The TeamAll, Geo-Joint1 Comment

We mark the passage of time by seconds, minutes, hours, etc., up to centuries and millennia. Of course, there are much longer periods used by geologists and astronomers, but for human purposes the shorter ones are sufficient for common use. While counting time, we all live on a big ball, and to make sense of that home we have made … Read More

Geo-Joint: The End of Hawaiian Sugar

The TeamAll, Geo-Joint0 Comments

The intrepid canoe sailors who first came to the shores of Hawaii brought all the foodstuffs they had eaten in their native islands: pigs, chickens, taro, sweet potato, and among other plants, sugarcane. Sugarcane was valued for its sweetness and high caloric content, but production was done on a small level, along with other crops. The prominence of sugarcane in … Read More

Geo-Joint: Cueva de los Cristales

The TeamAll, Geo-Joint, Get Inspired0 Comments

Crystals must have baffled early humans. They’re some of the few things in nature that look man-made. That is to say that they often come with the kind of flat, smooth surfaces and arrow-straight lines that make them look like they were processed on a machine. Pre-machine Stone Agers would have found them strangely unique and mysterious. Where could they … Read More

Geo-Joint: The Toledo Strip

The TeamAll, Geo-Joint0 Comments

Here in the United States of America, we’re all one big happy family, right? We all know the fifty states and just exactly where the borders lie. Nowadays that’s pretty true. But as the country was being assembled, there was plenty of political wrangling over border placement, and sometimes it got pretty heated. Back in the late 1700s, the Northwest … Read More

Geo-Joint: California’s “New” Aquifer

The TeamAll, Geo-Joint1 Comment

It’s no news to anyone that California is trudging into its sixth year of drought. Last year’s El Niño brought relief to the northern half of the state, and left some good snowpack in the Sierra Nevada, but down south things are still pretty crispy. Central Valley farmers, who produce the majority of many crops for the whole nation, are … Read More