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LESSON IX.—LEGUMINOUS AND UMBELLIFEROUS PLANTS.

[EXOGENOUS or DICOTYLEDONOUS; Angiosperms ; Polypetalous.]

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Umbelliferous Family.

Leguminous Family. 1. Lupi'nus peren'nis, Wild lupine, xvi. 10, b., 18 in., My.-Jl., N. Am. 2. Erythri'na herba'cea, Herbaceous corol-tree, xvi, 10, 8., 3 f., Jn.-S., Carolina. 3. Robin'ia pseu'do (ca'cia, Locust-tree, xvi. 10, pu., 49 f., My.-Jn., N. Am. 4. Mimo'sa sensiti'va, Sensitive plant, xv.10, pk.,18 in., A.-S., Brazil. ' 5. Hæmatox'ylon Campechia'num, Logwood, x. 1, y., 20 f., J.-Jl., S. Am. 6. Indigo'fera stric'ta, Upright indigo, xvi. 10, pu., 3 f., Jl.Au., C. Good Hope. 7. Dau'cus caro'ta, Wild carrot (also cultivated), v. 2, w., 3 f., Jn.Jl., Europe. 8. Si'um latifo'lium, Water parsnip, v. 2, w., 3 f., Jl.-Au., N. Am. 9. Co'. nium macula'tum, Poison hemlock, v. 2, w., 4 f., Jn.-J., Europe. 10. 'A'pium graveo'lens, Garden celery, v. 2, w., 4 f., Jn.-Au., Europe,

1. The leguminous? or pod-bearing plants comprise a large family, highly useful to mankind, and some of whose species are familiar to all. They are characterized either by a papilionaceous? corolla or a leguminous fruit. The pea, the bean, locust, clover, and lupine are familiar examples in northern regions; and the acacias, mimosas, logwood, rosewood, sandal - wood, corol

trees, and indigo plants, in tropical 1. Legum of pea, open. Cand countries. Many of the valuable gums

3. l'apilionaceous corollas. and balsamsø of commerce, medicines,

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and coloring materials are obtained from this numerous family.

2. As objects of ornament, many of these plants are possessed of unrivaled beauty, and are favorites in our green-houses ; but it is in tropical countries that they appear in their greatest splendor. There, flowers of the corol-tree, of the deepest crimson, fill the forests, and climbing plants of every hue hang in festoons from branch to branch; the acacias, with their trembling airy foliage, and often truly golden flowers, cast a charm over even the most sterile regions of the tropics; while the pastures and meadows of the same latitudes are enameled with the flowers of myriads of hedysarums, and animated by the wonderful motion of the mimosas, or sensitive plants.

3. Who has not read Shelley's beautiful little poem, beginning,

" A sensitive plant in a garden grew,
And the young winds fed it with silver dew,
And it spread its fanlike leaves to the light,

And closed them beneath the kisses of night." The sensitive plants, often cultivated in gardens as objects of curiosity, shrink from the touch, and make a variety of movements under the varying influences of shade and sunlight, like beings endowed with rational life.

Weak with nice sense, the chaste mimosa stands,
From each rude touch withdraws her timid hands;
Oft, as light clouds o'erpass the summer's glade,
Alarm'd she trembles at the morning shade,
And feels, alive through all her tender form,
The whisper'd murmurs of the gathering storm ;
Shuts her sweet eyelids to approaching night,

And hails, with freshen'd charms, the rosy light.-DARWIN. The cause of the peculiar motions of these plants has been a subject of much investigation, but the question still continues to be asked, without any very satisfactory answer,

Whence does it happen that the plant which well
We name the sensitive, should move and feel'?
Whence know her leaves to answer her command,

And with quick horror fly the approaching hand ?-PRIOR. 4. The umbelliferous3 plants, also a large family, mostly natives of temperate regions, and distinguished for their umbel or umbrella-shaped flowers, like those of the carrot, present some very strange contrasts of character. While in their

a Such as gum Arabic, produced by the acacia Arabica ; gum lac; gum Senegal ; gum tragacanth; gum kino; balsams of copaiva and Peru; and a hedysarum which produces manna. .

• The senna of commerce; licorice; cowitch, which consists of the stinging hairs of the pods of a plant; etc. , Brazil wood; logwood; red sandal-wrood; indigo, etc.

native ditches they are often suspicious, and perhaps poisonous weeds, under the influence of cultivation many of them lay aside their venom, and become wholesome food for man. Thus a coarse bitter wild weed becomes by cultivation the sweet and crisp garden celery; the garden parsnip is nearly allied to the poisonous cicuta; and while the seeds of the garden fennel are a pleasant spice, the juice from the roots of another species of the same plant produces the loathsome asafoetida.

5. Only slightly divergent from the umbelliferous plants, and by many botanists included among them, are the ivyworts, at the head of which stands the common ivy:

" The ungrateful ivy, seen to grow
Round the tall oak, that six-score years has stood,

And proudly shoot a leaf or two
Above its kind supporter's utmost bough,

And glory there to stand, the loftiest of the wood." 6. But, however ungrateful it may be, the ivy is a valuable ornamental evergreen for covering naked buildings, trees, and ruins, to which it attaches itself by short fibres. The ancients held ivy in great esteem; and Bacchus, the god of wine, is represented as crowned with it to prevent intoxication. The modern associations connected with this plant are very happily set forth in the following song to The Ivy GREEN.

Oh! a dainty plant is the ivy green,

That creepeth o'er ruins old!
Of right choice food are his meals, I ween,

In his cell so lone and cold.
The walls must be crumbled, the stones decayed,

To pleasure his dainty whim;
And the mould'ring dust that years have made
Is a merry meal for him.
Creeping where no life is seen,

A rare old plant is the ivy green.
Fast he stealeth on, though he wears to wings,

And a stanch old heart has he!
How closely he twineth, how tight he clings

To his friend, the huge oak tree!
And slyly he traileth along the ground,

And his leaves he gently waves,
And he joyously twines and hugs around
The rich mould of dead men's graves.
Creeping where no life is seen,

A rare old plant is the ivy green.
Whole ages have fled, and their works decayed,

And nations scattered been ;
But the stout old ivy shall never fade

From its hale and hearty green.
The brave old plant in its lonely days

Shall fatten upon the past;
For the stateliest building man can raise
Is the ivy's food at last.

Creeping where no life is seen,

A rare old plant is the ivy green.--CHARLES DICKENS. LE-GŪ'-MI-NOUS plants are such as have for 3 UM-BEL-LIF'-ER-OUS plants are such as havo their seed vessel a legume of two halves, the mode of inflorescence, or flowering, call

such as the pods of peas, beans, etc. 1 ed an umbel, like the carrot. % PA-PIL-I-O-NA-OE-ous, resembling the butterfly.

LES. X.—THE COMPOSITE, OR SUNFLOWER FAMILY.

[EXOGENOUS or DICOTYLEDONOUS ; Angiosperms ; Monopetalous.)?

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1. Cni'cus altis'simus, Tall thistle, xvii. 1., pu., 6 f., Au.-S., N. Am. 2. Cni'cus arven' sis, Canada thistle, xvii. 1, pu., 2 f., Jl., N. Am. 3. Helian'thus multiflo'rus, Many-flowered sunflower, xvii. 3, y., 6 f., Au.-0., N. Am. 4. Chrysan'themum Sinen'se, Chinese chry. santhemum, xvii. 2 (all colors but blue), 3 f., 0.-N., China. 5. Lactu'ca sagitta'ta, Arrowleaved Lettuce, xvii. 1, y., 2 f., Jl.-Au., Hungary. 6. Gnapha'lium stæ'chas, European shrubby everlasting, xvii. 2, y., 2 f., Jn.-0., Europe. 7. A s'ter Chinen'sis, China-aster, xvii. 2, various colors, 2 f., Ji.-S., China. 8. Dah'lia frustra'nea, Wild dahlia, xvii. 2, various colors, 6 f., S.-N., Mexico.' 9. Tage'tes pat'ula, French marigold, xvii., 2 y., 2 f., Jl.-0., Mexico.

1. The “Sunflower” family is the name used by that distinguished American botanist, Professor Gray, as a popular term for the great division of plants having composite or compound flowers. It is the largest family of plants, embracing nearly ten thousand species, or about one tenth of all the species of the vegetable kingdom. They are either herbaceous or shrubby plants in northern regions, but many of them become' trees in the tropics; and all of them are easily distinguished by having their single or monopetalous? flowers (called florets), which are always five-lobed, and have five stamens each, crowded into a head at the top of a flower-stalk, as in the daisy, dandelion, sunflower, and thistle.

2. These composite plants are, without exception, of easy cultivation; and as most of them flower in autumn, they are the chief ornaments of every autumnal garden. It would require a volume to point out the beauties of the various tribes of aster, sunflower, coreopsis, marigold, daisy, chrysanthemum, and kindred species, not to mention the almost innumerable and brilliant varieties of the dahlia. As to the medicinal qualities of the plants of this family, it is sufficient to state that they consist, almost without exception, of a bitter

principle and an oily secretion; and Cultivated Dahlia.

of the former, at least, we have abundant evidence in such species as wormwood, chamomile, dandelion, and tansy.

3. The dandelion was one of the flowers introduced by Linnæus into his floral clock, or dial of flowers, on account of the regularity of the opening and closing of its petals. It was deemed by him “Flora's best time-piece, seeming of herself to know the opening and the closing of the day,” inasmuch as

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"With Sol's expanding beam her flowers unclose,

And rising Hespera lights them to repose ;"' and Moore has very prettily expressed the same idea in the following lines :

"She, enamored of the sun,
At his departure hangs her head and weeps,
And shrouds her sweetness up, and keeps

Sad vigils, like a cloistered nun,

Till his reviving ray appears,

Waking her beauty as he dries' her tears." 4. The marigold not only marked one of the hours in the floral clock, but she is said also, like the sunflower itself, to turn on her slender stem toward the sun, and thus follow him in his daily walk.

" When, with a serious musing, I behold

The grateful and obsequious marigold,
How duly, every morning, she displays
Her open breast when Phoebus spreads his rays';
How she observes him in his daily walk,
Still bending tow'rd him her small slender stalk';
How, when he down declines, she droops and mourns
Bedew'd as 'twere with tears, till he returns';
And how she veils her flowers when he is gone,
As if she scorned to be look'd upon
By an inferior eye'; or did contemn
To wait upon a meaner light than bim':
When this I meditate, methinks the flowers
Bare spirits far more generous than ours,

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