A Closer Look: Salad

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Bill Dembowski, photos by the author.

This piece originally ran in the 09 April 2004 issue of The Citizen Scientist. -Ed.

No matter how seemingly mundane, everything deserves a closer look. Here is proof that the beauty of nature exists everywhere, even on the end of a salad fork.

Lettuce

The outer leaf of a head of iceberg lettuce showing the veins which carry water and nutrients.


Tomato

Two tomato seeds still in the gelatinous coating that, among other things, provides protection from digestive juices and allow the seeds to be spread in the feces of those creatures that feed on them.


Green Bell Pepper

Cells that comprise the outer skin of a bell pepper. Compare to the shape and arrangement of onion cells below.


Onion

The beginning microscopist's delight. Cells from between the layers of an onion stained with Safranin O to show internal structure.

Celery

Cross section of a stalk of celery showing the internal plumbing that carries fluids and also provide structural strength and rigidity.


Mushroom

Here's a really closer look (400x); spores from the gills of a miniature portabella mushroom.

About William Dembowski

I am retired and now free to pursue my true life’s work as a science jock. I have a domed astronomical observatory in my backyard, a microbiology lab in one spare bedroom, and a photographic studio in another (ooops, that’s art not science).
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