Tag Archives: Spores

What is a puffball?

A puffball is a ball-shaped mushroom that gives off a puff of powdery spores when pinched.  It is a kind of mushroom growing in a field that looks very much like a round ball. Anyone who has kicked a ripe puffball and watched the cloud of “smoke” puff out knows how the puffball gets its …

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Where does dust come from?

Housekeepers spend a good deal of time dusting.   If you have ever helped clean, or dust, furniture, you may have wondered where all the dust comes from.  It seems to be a daily chore, because dust is always with us. Dust settles from the air and makes a gray coating over everything around us.  Dust …

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How do mushrooms grow?

Mushrooms often seem to appear as if by magic in a meadow after a rainy summer day. The most familiar kinds look like little umbrellas.  Others may resemble bells, funnels, or pieces of coral. Mushrooms belong to a group of plants called fungi.  There have neither flowers nor seeds.  New plants start from tiny cells …

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Why does moss grow on the north side of a tree?

Moss likes to grow on the side of the tree that’s shady. One way you can sometimes tell which direction is north in a forest is to see on which side of the trees moss is growing.  Mosses are most often found growing where it is moist and shady.  That’s why moss on trees usually …

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Where does mold come from?

Mold is really a patch of tiny plants.  Tiny molds “seeds” called spores are carried away by currents of air.  When they land on a material they can use as food, the spores grow into new mold plants. If you leave a piece of damp bread in the kitchen, in a few days it will …

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