22 Pine-nuts v ab [very abundant] this yr [year]. Give a yellow tinge to the trees most ab [abundant] on top. Grow [sessili] at right angles to branches -- often bend the longer twigs—The sterile cones reddish sessile in [numerous] cylinders The needles remain from 8 to 12 yrs [years] on tree. Each needle is handsomely ornamented by a calyx [sketch] [like] circle of scales –those of the needles to tie & bind when the [they] are in [facilis]—needed however to strengthen weak end of the one round needle Species of Gooseberry common on the driest ridges. Indian food prickly berries red. Morning sounds [dove] hyla grasshoppers. Cedar birds. Deer on mtns [mountains] not ab [abundant] mule-deer only.
23 On Lynosiris. The larva of insect in hollow twig succulent & covered with cotton from 1/8 to ¼ inch thick. The cotton growing on the branch strong white fibre like [com] cotton. Marvillous adaptation of means to end. Modification to suit so very different an end than that of the bush to bear insects instead of leaves & flrs [flowers]. Does the parent insect know the coming result clearly Does the plant know is it instinct in one or the other or both. How far as yet beyond the power of man to make such modifications in plants. How laborious the efforts to fix merely descernable variations. We laugh at Maundervilles Sheep true. On these Nevada Deserts we find bushes bearing insects as a regular fruit.
Original journal dimensions: 9.5 x 16 cm.
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John Muir, journals, drawings, writings, travel, journaling, naturalist