atlasobscura:

Curious Fact of the Week: The Tree That is a Forest

From afar, the Great Banyan Tree in Indian Botanic Garden appears like a whole forest. It’s only once you step into its shade and see the connection of branches that you realize it is one tree.

With a canopy that spreads over 14,400 square meters, the Great Banyan Tree is the widest tree in the world. From this span, more than 2,800 aerial prop roots descend down into the earth, appearing like individual trees. It’s the main draw of the botanical garden, and although no one knows its exact origin, it has been showing up in guidebooks since the 1800s. 

theenergyissue:

Rain Dances of the Jemez Pueblo

The rain dances of the Jemez Pueblo people are documented in a 1947 film from Dudley Pictures Corporation’s “This Land is Ours” series of educational travelogues. Rain dances are a form of weather modification that span a number of cultures across the world. The ritual has deep historical roots and is still practiced in a diverse range of areas, including Zimbabwe, Slovakia, and Native American communities. While many Native American rituals involved only men, the rain dance was unique in that women also participated—an indication of the importance of rain to the entire community. The dance was more common to Native American tribes who lived in dry, Southwestern regions which received little rain. Indeed, the Pueblos, who have historically resided in a very arid region of New Mexico, have a particularly intricate rain dance. Movements, costumes, and instruments are chosen and designed for their symbolic qualities. For example, the beating of a drum might represent thunder; a white woven sash, flowing water; and turquoise appliques, rain droplets.