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MAGGIE PUCKETT
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Born 1981, Long Beach, California, USA
Lives and works in Chicago, Illinois, USA

Through handmade paper, artist’s books, and environmental works my practice navigates our planet from atmosphere to core, examining ecological history and visualizing predictions of future global change. Read More

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COMMUNITY PROJECT

Phyto-Paper
2012-Ongoing
Handmade paper (Exterior: Letterpress printed unbleached abaca; Interior: unbleached abaca dyed with turmeric and annatto seed with organic sunflower seed inclusions)
7.5 x 5.5 inches (closed)

Phyto-Paper contains organic Lemon Queen sunflower seeds. This plant is known to absorb lead from soil, reducing the soil’s toxicity in a process called phytoremediation. Please plant these seeds in your neighborhood to reduce lead contamination in the soil.

This project was created by Maggie Puckett during the 2012 Winter/Spring Alumni Studio Access Award residency at the Center for Book and Paper, Chicago. Many thanks to the Center’s staff and faculty for helping make this project a reality.

For recipients of the paper:

Planting Instructions

Things you will need:

seeds (included)
soil
small containers
(if starting indoors)
water
small shovel

Instructions:
1. If starting indoors (recommended), fill small containers with soil. You may plant outdoors after the last frost.

2. Make a hole in the soil about 1/2 inch deep (up to your first knuckle if using your finger). One hole per small container, or if planting outdoors, space holes 2 feet apart.

3. Remove seeds from the interior seed-paper and place one seed in each hole, covering it loosely with soil.

4. Gently water the sunflower seed. Keep the soil moist, but not soggy. Place containers in a sunny window.

5. Seeds will germinate in 10-14 days. Transplant outdoors (If started indoors) after plants have their second set of leaves. Continue watering the plants as they grow outdoors. They are now absorbing toxic lead from the soil.

6. In late fall, when the plants stop growing and begin to die, collect seeds to be planted the following spring.

7. Throw away the rest of the plant. It is now considered a hazardous biomass. Landfills are currently they best way to limit human exposure to the accumulated toxins in the plants.

Send pictures and stories to phytopaper@gmail.com

Definitions
Phytoremediation
phy·to·re·me·di·a·tion
A process of decontaminating soil or water by using plants to absorb or break down pollutants.

Hyperaccumulator
hy·per·a·ccu·mu·la·tor
A plant that absorbs toxins, such as heavy metals, from the soil in which it is growing.

Share Your Stories
Send pictures and stories about where you plant your sunflowers. Tell me about lead contamination in your neighborhood. Email phytopaper@gmail.com

 

For project updates and information about the artist:
www.maggiepuckett.com

 


 
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Copyright © 2016 Maggie Puckett. All rights reserved.