Explorations with foldscope @ Ashram

The kids enjoyed viewing different samples as they peeped through foldscope. To them it was something so amazing. Sample – 1 Flower (Ipomoea) Sample – 2 Flower (Albizzia)

Germinating fungal spores

Germinating hyphae were little tiny structures noticed in the fermented dough. I had always read about germinating spores but seeing for the first time under the foldscope was unbelievable.

Different stages of sporulation in fungi observed under foldscope

Beginning of sporogenesis is a rare view which I was able to study under foldscope incidentally. Stage-1: The fungal hyphae had spread forming a dense network called mycelium. Stage -2: From these some special reproductive hyphae called sporangiophores were visible. The tips of these stalk-like structures were slightly swollen. Stage -3: These then became big…

CONSORTIUM OF FUNGI ON FERMENTED DOUGH

My winter vacations began with fungal rich samples for my foldscope. Travelling from Chandigarh to Ahmedabad (in Gujarat) to my daughter’s place proved to be an enthusiastic vacation for me. While she was off to her workplace, I was busy cleaning the mess and there I got samples worth to view under a foldscope. In…

Fodder bean @ Foldscope sensitization at a farm in Punjab

Moving through the farms of Punjab we came across the fields where mixed crops were grown – wheat and leguminous crops. Indian bean with its short and flat pods was spotted. We were confused whether it was Indian bean or Lima bean as farmers termed it as Phali in their mother tongue. The plants were…

Tutorial on Spore prints of mushrooms

Spore prints – These are made by the many microscopic spores falling from the mushroom, leaving a photographic impression. Significance – Each mushroom forms a characteristic pattern, so useful in identification and also a source of obtaining clean and homogenous spores for mushroom cultivation. Methodology: Pick out a mature mushroom Remove the stem so that…

Fern fiddleheads seen through foldscope

In the forest adjoining Ropar wetlands, we could see a lot many ferns. These had rhizomes – the underground stems from which the leaves are produced. The leaves of ferns are large sized and called fronds. These have circinate folding in young leaves. The new young foliage is tightly coiled in a spiral which gradually unfurls as…

Wasp Paper nest (Fibers in nature)

A fallen paper nest of wasp was seen outside my bedroom window. It was empty and probably the wasps had flown away. I picked it up to observe its structure through a foldscope. I was able to see a criss-cross of fibers inter-woven to form hexagonal compartments of a wasp nest. There are different kinds…

Pollen of Pink Wild Musk Mallow

From a students’ desk : Mohit Sharma Learning usage and assembly of foldscope @ GGDSD workshop gave me real life-time experience – ‘how amazing the nature is ? On 2nd day of workshop we were taken for a walk to nearby Japanese garden. On the way I spotted a wild plant with beautiful baby pink…

Foldscoping in Japanese Garden, Chandigarh (India)

On the second day of the workshop, the participants were taken for a visit to Japanese Garden which is at a distance of 1 Km from the GGDSD College, Chandigarh. The garden has a lot of unique evergreen plants and has a serene environment for morning walkers and nature lovers.   The layout of the…

Amazing explorations of a flowering weed on my rooftop

A weed was seen growing on my rooftop. It was a succulent plant with linear leaves. All the flowers except one had fertilized giving rise to seeds. The single flower that was seen had not opened up. It was deep pink and I teased it to observe its pollen under foldscope. The seeds were small…

Fibers from Nature -5 (seed dispersal fibers)

  The more we explore, the more fascinating things are revealed. The fibers seen in a weed could be so amazing and strongly woven is beyond imagination. Foldscopy of a weed with its seed entangled in a tuft of cottony fibres  is wonderful. Probably the fibers aid in seed dispersal. The details of this exploration…

Pollen of Gulmohur flower

Gulmohar is a very popular roadside tree of my city beautiful – Chandigarh with its graceful foliage and beautiful flowers.  Delonix regia belongs to Caesalpinioideae of family Fabaceae. It is also called flame tree because of its clusters of flame-red flowers found in typical racemes. The tree is medicinally important and also an inspiration to…

Fibers from nature -4 (Amazing Weaving seen on Tulsi leaf)

I visited my friends’ place last Sunday. There I saw some wooly growth on leaves of tulsi. I plucked the leaves and brought them home to see the wooly thing under foldscope. I was surprised to observe silk like fibres strongly entangled in a criss-cross manner. I pierced through the wooly growth and I was…

Orange fruit segment through foldscope

After observing the fibers of the orange peel, I focused upon the internal parts of the orange hesperidium. Orange fruit is a juicy berry with a thick leathery rind and internally divided into segments. Each segment is surrounded by a membrane which encloses the pulp. The seeds are located towards the inner side of the…

Fibers from nature – Dietary fiber from orange peel

Oranges are a rich source of vitamin C and also provide potassium is well known. Besides they are a good source of fibers too. A large proportion of the fiber material in peeled orange is insoluble fiber. Insoluble fiber helps in regulating bowel movement and is found in the peel part. The soluble fiber is…

Classroom practical with foldscope -Testing Foods for Starch

A simple activity to make science learning interesting and easy was performed by the students in their practical class today. When iodine solution is mixed with starch,  it turns from brown to dark blue or blue-black. This is a simple test to show whether food contains starch. Thin walled cells of many fruits, seeds and…