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thing like the timidity of our harmless animals--the Hedysarum Gyrans, or moving plant of the east, exhibits an inCessant and spontaneous movement of its leaves during the day, in warm and clear weather; but in the night season, and in the absence of light and heat, its motions cease, and it remains as it were in a state of quiescence-and the American Venus' Flytrap, like an auimal of prey, seems to lie in wait to catch the
insect*. These are wonderful properties of the vegetable creation, but these are necessary in the infinitade of the works of God, as links to connect it with the order of animals, and preserve unbroken the most minute gradations in Nature's universal chain!
I'LOWERS are undoubtedly among the most exquisite pieces of nature's workmanship. What beautiful tints do they display ? - What lively colour's do they unfold ?- What variegated beauties do they discover ?-and, what delightful períumes do they emit! In view of these well might the poet exclain :
-Who can paint
bud that blows: Bnt the skill of the architect is no less conspicuous in the general contrivance and delicate structure of their several parts, and beautiful harmony of the whole, than in the laying on of the colours by wbich they are embellished.
The diversity of shape, and form, and complexion, in those of different kinds is not more remarkable than that no
* The leaves of this plant are jointed and furnished with two rows of prickles. Their surfaces are covered with a number of minute glands, which secrete a sweet liquor, and allure the approach of fies. When these parts are touched by the legs of a fly, the two lobes of the leaf in-tantly rise up, the rows of prickles.lock themselves fast together, and squeeze the unwary animal io death.
two are to be found exactly alike, even of the same species and growing on the same stalk or knot.
Nor should the aromatic fragrance which those beautiful sons and daughters of nature send forth, more excite our gratitude, than that well ordered succession, by which, the pleasures we receive from these transitory visitants are lengthened out and protracted almost all the year round.
Before winter with his cloudy front has taken his departure, the early Snow-drop boldly steps forth in his pare white robe, the Crocus next, with an air of timidity peeps out, and as if afraid to venture, keeps close to the earth--then comes the Violet with her varied beauties, accompanied by the sparkling Polyanthus, and splendid Auricula~afterwards groves of Tulips display their rich and gaudy attire, followed by the Anemone in her spreading robe. Now the Ranunculus expands the - zichness of his foliage--the Sun-flower shoots forth his golden rays,
and the beautiful Carnation with a numerous train the
rear, and close the procession. Who can reflect upon this passing, yet protracted scene, without being forcibly struck with the wisdom and goodness of God, manifested in it ? THE USE OF VEGETABLES:
TREES, Those stupendous specimens of creating art, spread nottheir wide extended roots, nor lift their lofty heads in vain. Beneath their cooling shades our flocks and herds find a comfortable asylum from the scorching rays of the sum. mer sun; the wild stragglers of the forest have a place of refuge among their woods and thickets; whilst the feathery songsters of the grove build their little dwellings in security, and sing among their branches ;-"as for the stork the fir-trees are her house."
But in what a variety of respects, besides affording the inhabitants of warm climates an agreeable shelter from the mid-day heat, do they yield their services, or are made subservient to the use of man. Some, as the bread-fruit-tree of the Pacific Ocean, the cabbage-tree of East Florida, the tea-tree of China, the sugarmaple-tree of America, the coffee-tree and sugar-cane in the West Indies*, and the numerous luxurious fruit-bearing trees scattered over the face of the globe, contribute to our wants in form of food. The fountain-tree on one of the Canary islands, is, said by voyagers to furnish the inhabitants with a Supply of watert; while the paper-mulberry-tree of the Southern ocean, and the cotton shrub of America, provide us with materials for clothing - The candle-berrymyrde presents the inhabitants of Nankeen, with a substitute for animal tallow.-The salt-tree of Chili yields a daily supply of fine salt.-The cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and pimento, furnish us with a supply of spices.—The Jesuit's bark, manna, senna, and others, produce a variety of simple but useful medicines. Some trees yield a precious balsam for the healing of the nations ; some a quantity of turpentine and rosin, and others give out their quota of valuable oils and gums.
Nor are trees serviceable only in a natural state :- :-by the assistance of art, some are converted into houses to protect man from the inclemency of the weather, or are moulded into a variety of forms for the purposes of building, and domestic comfort; others raise the huge fabric of the floating castle or bulky merchantman, by which the
About 1138, the Sugar cane was transplanted from Tripoli and Syria to Sicily; thence to Madeira, and finally to the West-Indies and America.
# A man is said to live near the spot where the tree grows, appointed by the council to take care of it, and who distributes its water daily to the inhabitants.
articles of industry and commerce are transported, and communication kept up with the remotest regions.
My limits do not permit me to enlarge upon these speci mens, or point out the various uses to which a number o other woods ia general use may be applied; but the reader' own thoughts may suggest these, as they are sufficiently obvious :~and mean time I proceed to the order of
SHRUBS. As much that has been already, said respecting the utili ty of trees, may be applied in common to this order, I shal confine myself to the three particalars in which they may be said to differ most from the former; the first is their stature, the second their greater pliability, and the third the prickly armour by which many of them are covered.
Some shrubs, as the gooseberry, the rasp, and the car rant bushes, so common in our gardens, gratify the palate and temper the blood during the summer months with agreeable and cooling fruit ; others, as the rose, delight and please the eye by the beauty of their flowers; or regale the olfactory nerves with the fragrance of their perfumes, a the sweet scented briar : but how could these several end have been accomplished, if, by a more exalted exposure the fruit-bearing bushes had placed their treasures beyond ou reach-every rose, with its back turned to us had beer 6 born to blush unseen”-and' each aromatic shrub, remove far above the sense of smelling, had literally been. Jef
" to waste its sweetness in the desert air." With regard to that considerable share of pliant elasti city possessed by some of them, how easily does this admi the branches to be turned aside and to resume their forme position, in the gathering of the fruit or flowers, and how - serviceable does this property enable us to make some o them in the form of hoops, baskets, or wicker work of any
descriptior description ; wbile the sharp-pointed prickles by which they are armed, serve not only as weapons of defence for themselves, but furnish us with cheap and secure fences against the inroads of straggling cattle, and the unwelcome intruson of the unprincipled vagrant.
HERBS In an especial manner may be said to constitute the food of man and beast, as well as to yield their assistance in an infinity of ways ;-and behold! in what profusion they spring forth ; in what numerous bands they appear. Yonder a field of golden-eared wheat presents to the view a most prolific crop of what forms the chief part of the staff of life.-Here a few acres of long-bearded barley ripen, to provide us with our favourite beverage. On the right hand stand the tall-growing and slender oats and flowering potatoes, to revive and keep alive the hopes of the poor; while, on the left the heavy-laden bean, and low-creeping pea, in lengthened files vegetate to furnish provender for our horses ; or the globular turnip increases its swelling bulk to lay up for our herds a supply of food when the softer herbage of the field is locked up by the congealing powers of winter.
Bnt wbat a spontaneous crop of luxuriant herbage do our meadows present in the appointed season, and in what s profusion of wholesome pasture do the numerous flocks of sheep and cattle roam? Whether they frequent the solitary holm, beside the still waters, or range the pathless steep; still they are followed by the goodness of the Lord : -myriads of grassy tufts spring up on every side, and they are satisfied out of the treasures of providence.
But the herbaceous productions of the field are not aniversally calculated for the purposes of food.--In some places numerous groups of tall, thin, flexible plants make