Wildflower is published quarterly by the Wildflower Center. Its content is national in scope with articles about the conservation and use of native plants as well as news from the Wildflower Center. A subscription is provided to Wildflower Center members as a benefit of membership.
Letter from the Editor - Fall 2012
A New Word Order
IS THERE OR IS THERE NOT ORDER IN NATURE? Arguments vary. In plants, phyllotaxis studies the arrangement of leaves on a stem and in relation to one another. Mathematician Eric W. Weisstein cites as an example the florets in the head of a sunflower that form two oppositely directed spirals: 55 of them clockwise and 34 counterclockwise.
I’m no mathematician, but order is something I find is an undisputed necessity in creating Wildflower magazine. Typically, there’s order in planning our magazine issues months in advance. There’s order in scheduling each piece – article, photograph, illustration – and each process – writing, editing, design, proofing – in a systematic way.
Because it seemed time for a new order to Wildflower magazine, we decided to bring you a fresh look and format this issue. We last changed this substantially six years ago when we renamed Native Plants magazine Wildflower – going back to the original name for the Center publication used in the 1980s. As Wildflower gained its footing – its voice, as we call it in publishing – it seemed time for a new order.
We’ve put a lot of thought – and heart – into the magazine’s new look and format. You’ll notice a larger typeface, more emphasis on our photography and more short sidebars in each article. Creative director In Churl Yo took a new approach with the headers of pages and the organization within our sections Field Notes and In Bloom.
We brought back a longer plant profile (See Featured Native Plant, “Sunflower of Mine,” page 27) and enhanced our how-to (Root of the Matter, “On the Fence,” page 30). We wanted you to hear from more of our staff and volunteers, who share their favorite seasonal plants in a new column, “For the Picking,” page 10. A new essay – Wild Life, page 32 – will bring you a very personal take on a nature or gardening topic each issue.
This is an important year for the Wildflower Center as it celebrates the 100th anniversary of the birth of our founder Lady Bird Johnson. Enjoy our magazine’s contribution to the ongoing celebration.