Tag Archives: ecosystems

Lessons in Non-equality and Why Segregation Often Works: Part 1

Earth Life

Have I lost you already?

Well if not just bear with me. It’s going to take me a few entries to work up to my point here (and I do have one) and when discussing touchy subjects like segregation and “equality I’m a fan of starting out with relatively simple examples that are easy to grasp and that most of us would agree are typically universal truths.

Let’s start with life forms and eco systems. Most of us can agree that different life forms, plants, animals, trees, reptiles, insects require different sources of energy and environmental sustenance to survive and thrive. Right? There are some plants and animals that have been imported and breed in non-native regions so we also know it’s possible to see life which had its genesis in one region, say South America growing and thriving in another region of America.

When you visit most any major Botanical Garden in America you will see the hot climate desert plants in the greenhouse where the environment is kept arid and moist. Domestic Cacti plants are perhaps the easiest plants to take care of because they need very little water. You over water a cactus and you could kill it. On the opposite spectrum are those plants that have very specific needs. It may not be enough to just water them every day or twice a day and leave them in the sun. The Phalaenopsis Orchid is such a life form. It’s rumored to be the easiest orchid to care for but you do have to pay considerably more attention to caring for it than you would a small domesticated cactus plant.

Now let’s consider a root vegetable like the Beetroot. Root vegetables rely very heavily on nutrients that come from the earth so it can be naturally assumed that the soil they live in is treated differently than the soil in which Orchids and Cacti or generally grown.

Years ago, when I lived with my family in the Bronx, we had a nice sized plot of earth in the back yard in which we planted tomatoes and peppers and squash among other things. And I remember that because we did not plant the squash far enough away their long tangled vines choked out a lot of the tomatoes we had planted. We weren’t experts and hadn’t anticipated it. Squash needs a lot of space. Certain varieties have vines with fine and curly creeping tendrils. It’s not like they mean to suffocate other plants. It’s just the nature of the way they grow.

Now, those examples being given, can we agree that Orchids, Cacti and Beetroots are not equal? Yes, they are all plant life forms, but they require very different nutrients, amounts of light, water and food to survive.  I’m certain that any skilled botanist and or farmer would not advise planting cacti, orchids and Beetroot side by side either. But! They could probably survive under the same roof.

Okay, I’m going to give you the rest of the day to let all this sink in and then return tomorrow with part two.

You might be thinking: Is this chick really going to compare people to plant life?

Maybe…Stop jumping ahead!

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