The object given was a piece of plant matter approximately 5.6 cm in length. It has a small red stem which extends straight. It is covered in short white hairs that present as a small fuzz. After 2cm it branches out in 3 directions. The stem then loses its color and becomes a brownish central support for a trio of leaves which are in forked out at 90 degree angles from each other. The leaves and the stem form a cross pattern when viewed from the front. The twin side leaves are diamond shaped with rounded points on the sides, while the top leaf is more of a fan shape. It extends from a V shape and then ends with an uneven bumpy-edged pattern. The center leaflet is slightly longer than the others at 3.3 cm, while the smaller side leaflets are 2.2 and 2.3 cm. Each is about the same width ranging from 1.9-2.1 cm. Overall it is very thin, with the stem being roughly a millimeter thick and the leaves around ½ mm. Most likely the three leaves are leaflets, and this stem is one leaf off of a larger plant. The front face of the leaves are a dark waxy green, and the backside is pale and light colored.
In class, a green, unidentified compound leaf was given to each participant. With 3 rounded leaflets in total, two protuded in opposite directions, and the third sat vertically in the same direction as the red stem that connected them. All three were small and asymmetrical, with wavy margins and felt mostly smooth. Looking closely at the flat surface, one would notice the yellow veins and scaly etchings that coursed throughout the leaflets. Despite the beauty, there were some signs of decay marked by the brown spots and squiggles that ravaged the plant. Even with the imperfections, it seemingly did not hinder the plant's ability to produce a pleasant, earthy stench.
On initial observations of the leaf, there is a single red/pink stem that further branches out into 3 different leaves. The stem is fuzzy and feels softer, while once the leaves begin to grow out that fuzz is replaced with a waxy coating on the top of the leaf, and the softness of the stem is replaced with slicker, more slippery feeling. The leaves are almost exactly symmetrical in shape and size, with the center leaf being larger in both aspects. They all exhibit a broader shape at the head of the leaf, and all narrow down once they get closer to the stem. The leaves are a dark, shiny green on top and have yellow veins running through them in a very uniform fashion. Every vein has smaller tributary veins breaking off of them, and even smaller ones breaking off of those as well, which seems to go on indefinitely. While the leaves display a rich, dark green color, the middle leaf has a distinctly large brown spot, which is a sign of decay and death. There is also a small “wiggling” pattern coming off of the spot. This is due to a small moth larvae hatching in between the leaf layers and eating its way out of the leaf. Very small dark spots were noticed on every leaf as well, sort of like freckles. While the top of the leaf is shiny and vivid, the underside is more pale and dull and looks its unfinished compared to the top side. The leaves also have some lighter patches of green mixed throughout, and can slightly let light through itself.
As far as more analytical descriptions on the leaf, there were 4 or 5 small dark spots on the left leaf, while 4 were observed on the middle leaf and 3 were seen on the right leaf. The leaf in its entirety measured in at 7.0 cm in length, and 6.0 cm in width. The left leaf alone measured in at 3.3 cm in length and 2.3 cm in width. The right leaf came in almost exactly the same as the left one, with a 3.1 cm length and a 2.4 cm width. The middle leaf was larger, and came in at 4.6 cm in length and 3.3 cm in width. All these measurements relayed that not only were the leaves in a symmetrical shape and size pattern, but also that the length measurements were always approximately 1 cm more than the width measurements.
The sprig I was given is about 73 mm in length from the end of the stem to the top of the longest leaf. There are three leaves on the sprig, one in the center, and two on each side of the stem in the same location. The one in the center is both wider and longer than the side leaves. The cutting seems relatively fresh, the leaves are still firm and not drooping. The cut or torn end of the stem is still green inside and produced a small amount of moisture when pressed against the paper. The stem itself appears slightly hairy and is a brownish-red colour which persists into the main leaf vein, turning to a whitish-yellow about half way up each leaf. The upperside of the leaves appear glossy and deep green resembling leather in appearence and texture. The undersides of the leaves are dark lime green and are noticably more matte than the topside of the leaves. Both sides show dense veins and can be penetrated by light.
The sprig has a noticable scent, likely coming from the leaves and not the stem, which is earthy and slightly spicy. The shine noticed on the top of the leaves could be an oil produced by the plant which also produces the scent. The top of the leaves are slightly oily to the touch supporting this idea. The leaves are oblong and obtuse shaped, with each leaf having 5-6 notches spread over the upper end of the leaf body. The leaf in the center of the leaflet is noticably more symmetrical than the two side leaves. Based on the small size of the leaves and orientation, I think it is a leaflet from a smaller plant like a young tree or a bush.
There are abnormaities presented on two of the three leaves. The center leaf has a black/brown winding pattern on the left side, which I had guessed was due to some boring insect and turned out to be correct. It also has a protruding nodule close to the base of the leaf. The left leaf has these same abnormalities as well. The bore pattern on this leaf is far less large, but there are three nodules spread over the leaf body. The nodules are small, around the size of the head of a pin, their base is whitish green coming to a brownish-red point. The nodules protrude from both sides of the leaf but primarily from the topside. It looks like the nodules could be some type of other organism such as a fungus or the eggs of the insect that created the bore marks. However, the identical colouring of the stem and leaf to the nodules lead me to believe the plant produced them itself and they are not due to another organism.
The leaf had a thin stem with three green leaves jetting out in different directions, along with a very evident sweet yet minty smell. The red stem had thin, hair-like projections all over and its color extended to a certain point after the stem divided into main veins. The edges of the leaves are straight at the bottom unlike the top. Each vein had a reddish tint like the stem, but it gradually turned greenish-yellow moving to the pointy top. On one side of the leaf, the surface had a matte effect and was paler in color. On the other side, the leaf was a darker green and had a shiny surface. Placing the leaf on its pale end, certain size and shape differences were very clear. The left leaf was slightly smaller than the right leaf - later when measured, a 0.2cm difference was found. However, they were both very similar in shape - rounded. Conversely, the leaf in the center was much bigger (5.5cm) and was wider at the top than the bottom. Furthermore, the red tint, originating from the stem, started to disappear earlier in the smaller leaves in comparison to the bigger leaf. There were brown discolorations on the leaves. Surprisingly, the two side leaves had them in the same spot as each other (left of the main vein, towards the bottom). The center leaf had it in the top right corner.
The object that we observed in class today was three small, light green leaves attached to a thin red stem. The leaves are all attached at the same spot on the stem. The leaf in the middle is symmetrical in it's shape, but the other two are not. This is due to the curved edges of the leaves. The two side leaves have four curves on the bottom half and only two curves on the top half whereas the middle leaf has four curves on both sides. This makes the entire leaflet symmetrical down the center. One characteristic that I find most fascinating is the dark dots and squiggly patterns on two of the leaves. I did not know the cause of this discoloration until our discussion afterwards, and I learned that these spots are caused by a species of parasitic moth. I also observed that the top side of each leaf is smoother than the bottom side, and they have a fragrant smell. After using a ruler to measure the size of the leaf, I determined that the leaflet is longer than it is wide. I did not write down the exact measurements of its size because I was unsure if the ruler was in centimeters or another scale of measurement.
I was given a leaf to write about today. The leaf I was given reminded me of a shamrock because of its three leaves. The two leaves attached to the root were similar in shape. The leaf at the center had an upward curving leaf. The texture was noticably different on both sides. The top of the leaf had a smooth wet surface. In contrast, the bottom of the leaf had a chalky texture. The leaf colors also varied. The top of the leaf had a darker green color, while the bottom leaf was a lighter green color. The texture and color differences may be due to photosynthesis. The leaf must be adapted to absorb light so the top of the leaf problably has more chlorophyll. I noticed that each leaf has a midrib going through the center. The midrib starts thick near the petiole, but then decreases in thickness as it travels near the apex. The leaf I was given was noticeably veiny. Each leaf had around eight veins coming out from the midrib. The veins themselves had additional veins coming out of them. This reminded me of a blood under a microscope. The leaf had a musky, skunk like smell. It kind of reminded me of back home where we had lots of skunks running around. The unpleasant smell of the leaf might play a role in repelling insects and birds. What was very interesting for me were the quantitative measurements. The total width of the leaf was 7.2cm wide. The total length of the leaf was 7.2cm. I also noticed that the leaf always felt cold. It seems that the leaf does not hold to heat well.
At first glance this small cutting appears ordinary. With three leaves that diverge from the same point from a sturdy pink tinted stem. One of the leaves grows directly out of the end of the stick, whereas the other two leaves are perpendicular to the stem. The pinkish tint extends down from the stem into the leaves, showing the movement of the "veins" in the leaves. The two perpendicular leaves appear slightly smaller at approximately 30 mm long and 20 mm wide. However, the leaf that falls parallel to the stem is slightly longer, at approximately 40 mm long, and is less uniform. The parallel leaf has a more slanted shape, meaning that the "vein" that runs along the middle of the leaf swerves off to the side. This is unlike the two perpendicular leaves whose "veins" run straight from their origin to the end of the leaf. This adds to the overall character of the leaf, counteracting my first assumption that the clipping appeared unamusing.
Little dark spots also add to the character of the clipping. These dark spots make up a small swiveling pattern that is found on one of the perpendicular leaves. In addition, the stem itself seems to have a unique texture. The tiny "hairs" on the stem create a smooth and soft texture on the stem. The end of the stem, where the clipping was cut from the bush, seems rather blunt. Therefore, the clipping must have been torn off instead of cut off. The stem transitions from a yellowish-pink to a dark pink as it gets closer to where it was cut. The only other spot on the stem that is as pink as the end would be the point where all the leaves diverge from. These unique characteristics exhibited by the clipping seemed to have only revealed themselves under closer observation.
The mystery leaf placed on my desk is superficially a green compound leaf with three leaflets branching from the center stem. The leaflets are translucent with a waxy surface on the top side of the leaf. The back side of the leaf appeares a lighter green, with a matte finish. The leaflets have a red center stem that they all branch off of. The red center stem continues to about half way throuh each leaflet were it transitions to a yellow center vein. The yellow veins subseuently branch into smaller and smaller veins off of the center vein. There is a golden yellow perimeter of the leaf that follows the asymmetric indentations of each leaflet. The yellow perimeter is periodically interupted by brown masses of damaged tissue left behind by leaf minners. Each mass of brown tissue is unique. There are small three dimentional circular orbs of brown mass that are sitting on the leaflets. These orbs are most likely the eggs left by the leaf minning moths. The eggs enter the upper layer off the leaf tissue and burrow until they exit the leaff to become a new generation off leaf minnig moth. This pattern is shown in each of the brown masses of leaf tissue. The brown tissue starts off thin at one point on the leaflet. As the mass moves towards the outer perimeter of the leaflet, it grows thicker until the edge of the leaflet, where the brown tissue is most concentrated. The leaf minning pattern is what can be used to distinguish one leaf from another.
While in class on September 6, Professor Brewer passed out an object that appeared to be some sort of organic plant trimmig. The trimming contained three leaves and a stem. The stem ended to become the base which all the leaves grew from. Of the three leaves, one extended straight from the branch. This leaf was the longest of the three with a diamond-like shape with the edges having a slight scalloped appearance. The other two leaves extended from the stem at approximatly 90* angles. These leaves were shorter and stockier in appearance but still had the diamond-like shape with scalloped edges. Due to the orientation of the leaves with the stem, there is bilateral symmetry expressed by this plant trimming. The trimmed stem is a reddish color and extends about a third to halfway into the central plane of the leaf until it changes into the light green of the rest of the veins of the leaves. From the central vein of each leaf, all other branches of veins emerge from in a pattern similar to the bronchi of the lungs. The light color of the veins contrasts the bright medium to dark shade of the leaf's front and matches the lighter green of the underside of the leaf. From the underside of the leaf, the veins are still visable but only as raised lines of the leaf. The underside of the leaf is softer with a slight texture while the front side is waxy, most likely the cuticle of the plant.