Basic Maths Research Reports Procedures

For the rationale behind what is described below, see the Research page.

A series of reports written by Lawrence Edwards over several years named The Vortex of Life - Supplement and Sequel in 8 volumes have been scanned in and are available for download.  New researchers are strongly advised to download and read these reports both for their intrinsic interest and their valuable practical advice and results.

Photographing Leaf Buds

This has been done in two major ways:

    1.  Taking photographs of 10 picked leaf buds and finding their average lambda value.

    2.  Arranging to photograph the same bud from the same aspect  each day.

1.  The former method was used by Lawrence Edwards for some years, but as it removes so many buds after some months, it was replaced by the second method.

2.  Here a calibration mark is made near the bud to enable a camera to be arranged in the same relative position each day.  This requires a "jig" to be constructed for the camera.


Digital cameras are now used for convenience, with a minimum of 640x480 pixel resolution, although higher resolutions may prove preferable.  At present the bud workshop operates best with 640x480 pictures.   The use of time-lapse cameras is under investigation to enable the sequence of pictures to remain unbroken if the researcher is away temporarily.

Camera Jig

The camera needs to be mounted in a jig to help align it consistently each day, and a picture of the kind of jig required is shown below (see also Supplement and Sequel Vol. 2 page 31):

jig.gif (10575 bytes)

B is a wooden block with a small hole bored through it, just wide enough to allow the stem of the bud to pass through it.  P is a perspex window, and F is a flash which illuminates the white ceiling C.  The bud, on its stem, is passed through the hole in block B, and will be exactly in focus when it is just lying on the surface of the perspex window.

Existing researchers have adapted this suggested configuration to suit the needs of their cameras and circumstances, and will be pleased to offer advice.   For more detail:-

Download Practical Bud Observation, Measurement and Analysis Part 1 by Graham Calderwood (63k)
Download Practical Bud Observation, Measurement and Analysis Part 2 by Graham Calderwood (128k)


Graham Calderwood has developed a sophisticated "workshop" which can be used to analyse the photographs and enter the results in an archive.  This can be downloaded by researchers.  Until now this analysis had been performed by him, but it is hoped this tool will be used by researchers to do their own analysis, as if we obtain the number of researchers we hope for it will become too much for one part time person!  However, the purpose of the whole exercise would be lost of these results were not consolidated with those of other people, as the A-Graphs which have proved so informative depend upon that.  More on that if you join us!

Download basic bud workshop here.   (582Kb)

Download optional help files.   (159Kb)

Download optional WAV files (1.1Mb).

The above are ZIP files which need expanding.  The WAV files are for verbal advice/comment.