Rose Houk

Land Lines

Earth Notes: Early Cotton

Jan 22, 2014
National Park Service

A thousand years ago, farmers on the Colorado Plateau were known for their classic crop trio of corn, beans and squash. But, in some places, they were also growing, using and trading cotton.  

Rose Houk/KNAU

Grand Canyon river guides work long hours. In the last 2 years, some of them took on a seemingly unlikely new duty: collecting flies. By doing so, they've helped scientists learn more about the big canyon's aquatic food web.

Arizona Geological Survey

The Colorado Plateau is endowed with a world-class collection of geological eye candy, like the Technicolor badlands of Arizona's Petrified Forest. But conflicts arise when some of that geology is useful for more than a grand view.

Museum of Northern Arizona

She said she started her study of Navajo society "by accident." But, that "accident" turned into a lifetime career for anthropologist Gladys Reichard.

NAU Cline Library, Special Collections and Archives

There's not a lot left of Flagstaff's old farming tradition. It's a surprise to many living here today. But, this community - at an elevation of 7,000 feet - with it's short growing season, unpredictable moisture and harsh winds, was a farming hub for some 80 years.

Kris Haskins

It's been 3 years since the Schultz Fire seared more than 15,000 acres on the San Francisco Peaks north of Flagstaff. About 2/3 of that area, mostly ponderosa pine and mixed conifer forest, was moderately to severely burned. But native plant species have been helping to restore the area.

Desert Botanical Garden

You can't always tell a book by its cover - it's a cliche', but it's bearing out in the world of biology. As biologists peer ever more closely inside the book of life, they are learning there may be far more species of plants and animals than anyone previously thought.

BLM New Mexico

In the northwest corner of New Mexico, not far from Chaco Canyon, there's a geologic wonderland that's weird even by the amped-up standards of the Colorado Plateau...

Gary Beverly

In many parts of the country Del Rio Springs wouldn't get much attention. But because it's a reliable spring in an arid quarter, this little oasis has been attracting people for a long time.

National Park Service

More than a century ago, a Harvard undergraduate named Alfred Vincent Kidder came out west. He came to volunteer at some archaeological sites that had just been excavated - places like Mesa Verde and other ancient ruins.

Nicknamed Ted, he had little more than a tape measure, a cheap compass and a Kodak camera. But the experience changed his life - and the course of southwestern archaeology.