Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The question is not why the fish crossed the street, but HOW ...

Have you been to the WSU Puyallup Research & Extension Center?

Until today, I had not.

After today, I'll be back.

I'd heard about the extension ... that this is where the Master Gardeners train and this is where there's a demonstration garden and some cool research. Soil studies, rain gardens, permeable pavement, low-impact development, agriculture research and so much more. It's really quite incredible, this amazing resource that is just around the corner.

But I'd never been. Today was meant to be merely a meeting (a looooooooong meeting). At lunch one of the staffers offered to take us on a little walking tour to see a man-made pond. I wasn't going to go, but I did. Apparently a bunch of my friends finally did a few sun dances, and thus: sunshine ... GLORIOUS sunshine. A walk was required.

And wow.

I don't remember all the details, but the below photo is the pond. Apparently the fish and salamanders and frogs inside it ... got there on their own! Nature is amazing. No wildlife was planted by man, nor by woman. But birds or other wildlife that come in from the pond across the street or other places brought in fish eggs and frog eggs (apparently they don't own feather or hair brushes ... go figure) ... and wa-lah! Sticky eggs get from Point A to Point B. (And I thought this only happened with plant seeds.) Oh, and this pond has salamanders ... but the one across the street doesn't. So weird. And so awesome. And so beautiful.

And here is the view across the street.

It was a glorious, if short, lunchtime walk in the sun.

Educational, too!

From the website:

An Urban Center Committed to Sustainable Communities

"Bridging the past to the future, providing research, instruction and outreach services through an interdisciplinary approach for the development of ecologically sound, socially responsible, and economically viable communities.

The Washington State University Puyallup Research and Extension Center unites a rich past of education and research with a critical and important need: the ability for institutions of higher education to develop sound science, instruction and outreach to meet the needs of future urban communities and their residents.

"Washington State University seeks to provide an exemplary teaching, research, and outreach environment that fosters the conservation of natural resources, supports and enhances social responsibility, addresses community and economic development, and follows environmental, social, and economic practices.

"The Puyallup Center connects the region to a world of possibilities creating sustainable social, economic, and ecological interdependencies through the community of Washington State University."

I like science ...