Author Archive: Michelle Werts


Speaking Plants and More

Every time I turned around this week, there seemed to be some new study, research or news related to forests, trees and flora that made me go, “That’s really interesting.” This made selecting a topic for today’s blog excessively difficult, so instead of selecting one, I selected four. Hope you find each of them as […]

Championship Wood

This weekend, college hoops fans will be treated to the final dance. The end of a more than three weeks of madness will culminate in New Orleans on a shining, squeaking maple court, and that maple court had just as long a journey to the Final Four as each of the basketball teams playing on […]

Saving Green With a Button?

Raise your hand if you’d love to reduce your carbon footprint, but feel like you lack the information or resources to do so. In 2009, each American spent an average of $3,460 in energy expenditures according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. When this couple thousand dollars’ worth of electricity is consumed is almost impossible […]

It’s Electric!

Lightning likes trees. No surprise, right? It’s something we’re taught as kids: Lightning seeks the path of least resistance to the ground, and tall objects, like trees, help it get to the ground faster. Well, as it turns out, there might be more at play here than just a tree’s magnificent height. According to new […]

Signs of Spring

Tomorrow’s Spring Equinox officially marks the beginning of a new season, but for many parts of the country, it felt like spring arrived weeks ago. The tree outside my window is already in full bloom, and the gorgeous magnolia I pass on my way to work each morning is already losing its blooms — that’s […]

Pine Tree State Turns 192

The Pine Tree State joined the Union on this day 192 years ago, bringing with it 17 million acres of forestland, 32,000 miles of rivers and streams, and 3,500 miles of coastline. Once part of Massachusetts, in 1820, Maine became America’s 23rd state, but its northeast border would be in dispute for another 22 years […]

A Significant Dilemma

How do you legally protect something when some of the legal language that is supposed to provide protection is unclear? This is a dilemma that’s been facing the Endangered Species Act in recent years. As many people are aware, the Endangered Species Act of 1973 provides for the classification, or listing, and protection of endangered […]

Lions and Lambs

According to the old English proverb, “March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb.” While this phrase is normally used with the weather, here in D.C., “like a lion” applies to something else: lawmaking. Congress is in session, and this month is chockfull of hearings, meetings and advocacy days, which are […]

Going in Circles

You know when you have an itch, but scratching it only seems to make it worse, and you’re stuck in a perpetual cycle of misery? Well, nature experiences similar phenomena: feedback loops. In technical terms, a feedback loop is when an output from a past event influences the same event, creating a cyclical pattern that’s […]

Take a Leap

Time is a fickle mistress. It’s supposed to be the one constant in life, right? It just ticks on second after second … except twice a year when we lose or gain an hour … and every four years when we all of sudden get an extra 24 hours in the form of Leap Day. […]