Gardeners and Nature lovers already appreciate the botanical wonders around us, but plants are more than floral beauties. We owe the air we breathe to them, all of our food, and most of our medicine, chemicals and housing. Animals from elephants to ants depend on plant-life. And the world's flora has an equally intimate relationship with the birds, insects, mammals and humans around them. Explore these relationships and find the latest botany discoveries through the links below. Check out the categories in the menu or try the search using the magnifying glass above.
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Turnabout Is Fair Play: Nonnative Trees At Risk From Native Insects

Such a finding emphasizes the need for careful evaluation of risks when introducing exotic tree species for plantation purposes, for example when searching for safe alternatives to native trees in the context of climate change adaptation. We recommend that risk assessments be conducted prior to the introduction, considering several factors such as invasiveness, hybridization and susceptibility to native insect species or pathogens

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Metal-Munching Plant Species Attract Their Own Unique Pollinators Too

Metal accumulation creates a filter for pollinators, similar to that documented for herbivores. Our study highlights a novel mechanism by which the abiotic environment can alter plant–pollinator interactions, and consequently plant reproduction and speciation.

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Does Soil Determine Plant Community? Or Do Plants Determine Soil Type?

The research is based on the finding that certain plants have the ability to alter a soil type by mining elements and hydraulically lifting them to sites in the soil profile where microbes assemble them into new minerals.

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Best Landscape For Capturing Carbon? Forests? No! Wetlands

One of reasons wetlands perform better compared to forests in capturing carbon is in the way organic matter and sediments are collected underwater, resulting in a slower breakdown that lets swamps act like carbon sinks.

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Small Does Not Have To Mean Simple: The Genetic Wonder That Is Bladderwort

Great, wonderful, wacky things can come in small genomic packages. That’s one lesson to be learned from the carnivorous bladderwort, a plant whose tiny genome turns out to be a jewel box full of evolutionary treasures.

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Tree Rings Clear Rats’ Good Name Of Black Death Accusations

They compared tree-ring records from Europe with 7,711 historical plague outbreaks to see if the weather conditions would have been optimum for a rat-driven outbreak.

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Tannin Extracted From Bark Replaces Some Petrochemicals

In Finland, tannin could replace, in particular, fossil-based phenols in adhesives used in the wood products industry.

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Native Prairie Grass Cleans PCBs from Soil

A type of grass that was once a staple of the American prairie can remove soil laden with PCBs, toxic chemicals once used for cooling and other industrial purposes.

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Forests Work To Turn Down Atmospheric Thermostat

As temperatures warm, plants release gases that help form clouds and cool the atmosphere, according to new research. The new study identified a negative feedback loop in which higher temperatures lead to an increase in concentrations of natural aerosols that have a cooling effect on the atmosphere

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The Important Health Benefits Of Eating Tobacco. If You’re A Bee

Scientists have discovered the naturally occurring chemicals found in the flowers of tobacco and other plants can reduce infection levels of a common bumblebee parasite by more than 80 per cent.