Wild plants of Chandigarh – Specimen 4 (Railroad creeper)

Commonly known as Railroad creeper or Ivy-leaved Morning Glory Botanical name – Ipomoea cairica Family – Convolvulaceae (Morning Glory Family) Collection site – Sec-64, S.A.S Nagar (Mohali) Habitat – fast-growing perennial herbaceous vine, that becomes weed in the wild. It rapidly colonizes the nearby trees, poles and nearby vegetation by creeeping Habit – herbaceous perennial…

Fungi everywhere -3

Sample 3 is of dried cake of Henna paste. Henna powder is applied as a natural dye to greying hair in our country (India). The powder is soaked overnight and then applied on hair. Somehow my friend did not get time to apply it and the paste dried up. When she noticed it after 3-4…

Fungi everywhere -2

Sample -2 is of juice, which we normally relish at juice corners roadside. But never have seen whether the vendor washed the utensils or the juicer. The old juice left in the jar normally starts to ferment within a few hours. You can see the thick sporangia isolated from beet and carrot juice left overnight…

Fungi everywhere

Fungi are the organisms that can find a place to grow anywhere. They can cause rotting of fruits, vegetables or juices. I have now starting exploring all such substrates that are suitable for fungal growth. Sample -1 is from a juice corner, where I could spot roughage being thrown as waste serving as an easy…

Planktons of Sabarmati river, Ahmedabad through foldscope

Sabarmati water was collected from the river front from different sites. One of the areas that had planktonic growth was strained through the mesh and sample fixed on a slide to view through the foldscope to find some mobility of planktons that is being shared with the community. Please help identify the organism……. Sample -1…

Foldscope demonstration in a village school-2

Foldscope orientation workshop was organized at S. Baldev Singh Govt. senior secondary School, Majatri (SAS Nagar). Use of audio visual aids is rarely done in classrooms in rural setups. Theoretical explanation and videos on foldscopy raised curiosity in the students. This paper microscope really fascinated them, They want to use it on their own. They…

Foldscopy in a village School of Punjab

A Foldscope orientation programme was organized at S. Baldev Singh Govt. senior secondary School, Majatri (SAS Nagar), Punjab on 7th Jan, 2019 by team Foldscope@GGDSD. The school is situated around 25 km from Chandigarh. While traveling from Chandigarh to village I have seen many stalls selling fresh Jaggery. They are preparing it on roadside from…

Moldy growth on home-made butter

Some bluish-green moldy growth was seen on home-made butter kept in refrigerator. I drew out a sample and fixed it on slide to observe under foldscope.

Foldscope sensitization and exploring brushy anthers – an outreach activity

While I was at my daughter’s place in Ahmedabad, I sensitized her friends on usage of foldscope and how it can help in viewing different samples. As a sample, they plucked a purple coloured flower growing near the society gate and plucked its anthers. They all were fascinated to see how these appeared under foldscope.

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)

Ginger and Turmeric cells as seen under foldscope

Ginger and Turmeric both have medicinally and economically important parts as rhizomes and both belong to family – Zingiberaceae. So I tried to see the difference between the cells of both the types using foldscope by scraping the cells. I could see not much difference in the shape of the two types, except for that…

Foldscope Outreach Activity @ Gandhi Ashram, Ahmedabad

As I was walking across the various cottages and galleries at Gandhi Ashram, I came to a cottage- the Gift shop of the ashram with a corridor where some kids from under-privileged section of the society were making hand painted greeting cards, stickers, key chains and beaded necklaces. As I interacted with them, I came…

A Memorable Visit to Sabarmati Ashram, Ahmedabad (Part-1)

Being in Ahmedabad, I planned to visit Sabarmati Ashram on 4th January, 2019, which was at a distance of about 36 kms from the place of my stay. I hired a cab and within 40 mins., I was at my destination. I pinched myself twice to make sure I was at a place where once…

Class room practical on bread mold experiment contd….(Group -B)

The class was quite excited to post the results. Group B results show an entangled mass of fungal hyphae and sporangia. Rhizopus was seen spreading all over with sporangia formation and also the stolons were clearly visible.  The students were happy to perform the activity and look forward for more foldscope-based activities. Curiosity-driven learning is…

Class room practical on bread mold experiment

A class room practical to study molds on bread was performed by 1st semester undergraduates. Target group – 20 students who worked in batches of 5 each Materials used – 4 slices of bread (any brand) 4 plastic bags Sealing tape Black marker Procedure followed – Each group took a plastic bag and labeled it…

Blue and yellow moldy growth on Amla

Powdery masses of green and yellow spores were seen on bruised surface of Amla ( Phyllanthus emblica). On consulting literature, it was evident that due to rough handling during long distance transportation and storage, the injured fruits are susceptible to fungal infections. The common microflora responsible for the post-harvest losses of fruits usually belong to…

Infected Cucurbita leaf under foldscope

White powder-like substance was seen on Cucurbita leaves. The leaves showed yellow patches also. The infected powder was seen under foldscope to find elongated structures as well as oval-shaped spores/cysts.

Fibers of soft toy under foldscope

Some fibers got loose from my sister’s teddy when it was washed. I stained them in beet juice and mounted them on a slide to see under foldscope. The fibers were quite clear and distinct.

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…

Mycelium growth found on chapati dough

Mouldy growth was seen on stale chapatti dough left un-noticed. On viewing a sample drawn from the white cottony infected portion showed growth of thread-like structures under a foldscope. These are mycelium.   

Foldscope training session in progress @NSS camp, GGDSD College on 28.12.18

An overwhelming response of the participants was seen in the NSS camp on usage of foldscope. The participants were keen to exchange hands at learning foldscope. The time paucity rendered preparation of only few sample slides. The trainers tried to satisfy all the queries of the participants and the enthusiasm of the participants was appreciable.

Using Foldscope in Swachh Bharat Abhiyan

It was a privilege to address about 110 NSS volunteers in a week-long training camp @GGDSD College, Chandigarh. The theme being ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’, the interaction lasted 2 sessions. In the 1st session, the importance of cleanliness was stressed upon and the ways and means for the same were discussed. It was followed by introduction…

Foldscope sensitization@ NSS Camp GGDSD COLLEGE

National Service Scheme (NSS) is an Indian government-sponsored public service program conducted by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports of the Government of India. NSS Camp is a special kind of a weeklong camp which is usually organized by the regional NSS Centers once in a year. The camp is planned in such a way that the volunteers are…