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500 Popular Tropical Plants by Periplus Editions

By Periplus Editions

288 web page, illustrating and data about:hardiness sector map, annuals, perennials, shrubs, bushes, fruit and nut bushes, cacti, succulents, orchids, ferns, cycads, climbers and creepers, and a reference desk.

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Q. ', ... ,.. '~ ,0' • . o :: .. , ; • •0 -' .. '. ' . ' . ~. :~ o · -•. ' ; " ..... /. •' :ti . " . I ' ' . , • • ' . ' ~,. \ • ". Cross, is a wonderful example of an open cluster, a loose collection of stars ten or so light years across that will eventually break up. Such clusters abound in the Milky Way, showing that stars are commonly formed in groups. Perhaps the Sun once had such a family. (© Anglo-Australian .. ", I . ' •. " ". ' , . ' - , - • ... ,+• . • ..... .. , ", . ~ .... • • ~ .

On the other hand, Deneb, at the top of the Northern Cross, would glow 15 times brighter than Venus at her brightest. Absolute magnitudes of stars range from -10, a million times brighter than the Sun (three sets of five magnitudes, or a factor of 100 x 100 x 100 = 1,000,000) to +20, a million times fainter. It would take a trillion of the faintest observed stars to equal the luminosity of the brightest. Color complicates the issue. Stars take on noticeable, though subtle, tints. The degree of color is personal, different eyes seeing different shades: what one person sees as orange another sees as yellow.

In contrast, some pairs are so close that the individuals can barely be discerned. (As a result of twinkling, caused by refraction in the Earth's turbulent atmos- 35 36 chapter 2 phere, without very sophisticated equipment the practical limit for visible separation is about half a second of arc; the orbiting Hubble, whose vision is unaffected by the air, can do ten times better). If close pairs are of different temperatures, their proximity enhances their contrasting colors and the doubles become startlingly beautiful.

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