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other nuts) in various locations and hopefully forget a few along the way. These seeds then have the advantage of actually having been planted in the ground! Small, dark, camas seeds are trapped in the dried remnants of the flowers on the adult plants until the wind, or a child, rattles the shaker and the little black gems are spread far and wide. Parachute seeds, such as that of the dandelion or thistle also rely on the wind to carry off their little darlings to new grounds.

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Renee Cenerini

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Renee Cenerini is the Program Manager at Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary. IslandParent.ca

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Some plants rely on more explosive means such as violets and our infamous invasive plant, Scotch broom. Their pods swell, dry, twist and burst, sending their seeds in multiple directions. Another ingenious means of transportation is hitchhiking on an animal. Seeds covered in burs and spikes easily attach to an animals fur (or your pants) in the hope that they will be removed later on in a hospitable place to grow. Others such as the coconut, rely on water for their transportation to new lands. The outer covering of a coconut acts like a life jacket and helps it float to an exotic destination. Of course, here in Victoria we are unlikely to find a coconut floating around but you never know! Whatever their means of travel, seeds must eventually find enough soil, water and sunlight to survive. Thankfully, their immense numbers almost guarantees that eventually, a seed will thrive and grow to become an adult plant and start the whole life cycle in motion once again. If you are looking for a perfect gift for a nature lover, consider some lovely seeds. While it may not be enjoyed immediately, it holds the promise of gifts to come once spring arrives. Whether it be for flowers, veggies or even a tree, with a little love, sunshine, water and a good place to grow, that small gift may give some great returns.

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Nature Notes

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Send Us Your Stories! Island Parent is looking for articles for upcoming issues. Some of our best content comes from people just like you—Vancouver Island parents who are passionate about their families and are dealing with the day to day issues of raising children in our community. Share your experiences, your thoughts on a particular issue, your ideas on places to see or projects to do—anything related to parenting. Check our Writer’s Guidelines at islandparent.ca for specific information on submissions. We’d love to hear from you. Please email submissions to editor@islandparent.ca. December 2016  53

Island Parent December 2016  

Gift & Book Recommendations

Island Parent December 2016  

Gift & Book Recommendations

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