Image created from a photograph by Conner Gordon

When in drought: the California farmers who don’t water their crops (Guardian)
by Charlotte Simmonds
“Is it possible to grow healthy grapes without watering them? Actually, if conditions are right, he says, it’s possible to grow even better ones. Less water means smaller, more intensely flavoured grapes with a higher skin-to-fruit ratio.”

What Fiorina Has In Common With Palin And Ferraro (Other Than Gender) (FiveThirtyEight)
by Julia Azari
“But as much as Cruz’s move defies campaign convention, it fits perfectly into a brief but depressing tradition: choosing a female running mate as a desperation move.”

White House ducks questions on Larry Wilmore’s use of N-word to greet Obama (Guardian)
by David Smith
“The comment immediately divided people both in the room and beyond. Jonathan Capehart of the Washington Post blogged: ‘Never before has the n-word been used to address the president. At least, not in public and most definitely not to his face. That’s why Wilmore’s use of it was as shocking as it was disrespectful.'”

Democracies end when they are too democratic (New York Magazine)
by Andrew Sullivan
“Could it be that the Donald has emerged from the populist circuses of pro wrestling and New York City tabloids, via reality television and Twitter, to prove not just Plato but also James Madison right, that democracies ‘have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention … and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths’?”

A complete guide to carbon offsetting (Guardian)
by Duncan Clark
“Over the past decade, carbon offsetting has become increasingly popular, but it has also become – for a mixture reasons – increasingly controversial.”