Category Archives: Amazing Plants

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Thorns And Spines Did Not Develop On Plants For The Reasons You Thought

The overwhelming bulk of the scientific literature on the ecological and evolutionary purpose of thorniness (or, to use biologists’ preferred terminology, spinescence) has focused on the hypothesis that mammalian herbivores are the main target. That may have been a mistake. Over the years, studies of how well sharp deterrents discourage hungry mammals have returned mixed results. (Click on title for full story.)

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The Trees That Lean Towards The Equator… Wherever The Are Planted

We first noticed A. columnaris leaning south in California and Hawaii, where it is a common horticultural plant. Our observation from Australia, though, suggested that Araucaria columnaris lean north in the southern hemisphere. (Click on title for full study.)

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High School Student Discovers How Plants Warn Neighbors Of Threats

“So the injured plant is sending signals through the air. It’s not releasing these chemicals to help itself, but to alert its plant neighbors,” (Click on title for full story.)

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Over 1,700 Exciting New Plant Species Discovered in 2016!

Finding so many new species in a year is not unusual and Prof Kathy Willis, director of science at Kew Gardens, said: “There are just huge areas we know nothing about. I find it really encouraging that there are many, many new plants to be found in the world.” (Click on title for full story.)

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Meet The Earliest Orchid Ever Found. A Mere 45 Million Years Old

How the orchid pollen in this study ended up attached to the fungus gnat and eventually entombed in amber from near the Baltic Sea in northern Europe is a matter of speculation. (Click on title for full story.)

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The Earliest Land Plants Survived By Teaming With Fungi

Paleobotanists think plants formed these relationships with fungi early on. Molecular, genomic and physiological evidence all suggest that early land plants were mycorrhizal to some degree. (Click on title for full story.)

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The Fierce Competitive Genius of…. Bluebells

Bluebells also form carpets without a wooded canopy and point to the locations of ancient forests, long after the trees themselves have vanished. This is because, unlike trees, bluebells have most of their biomass and reproductive organs (the bulb) below ground where they are better protected. They are beautiful flowers, but have you ever wondered how bluebells pull off an even more impressive feat: being in their flowering prime when other plants have only just started to grow? Here are seven of their cleverest tricks.(Click on title for full story.)

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Plant Roots Grow Towards The Sound Of Running Water

“It indicates that the invasion of sewer pipes by tree roots may be based on the plants ‘hearing’ water and shows that their perception of their surroundings is much greater and far more complex than we previously thought.” (Click on title for full story.)

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When Tomatoes Cry: Plants Know They Are Being Eaten.

“What is surprising and cool is that these plants only create defense responses to feeding vibrations and not to wind or other vibrations in the same frequency as the chewing caterpillar,” (Click on title for full story.)

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Are Tree Trunks Contributing To Global Climate Change? (WHAT?)

Methane is about 25 times stronger than carbon dioxide, with some estimates as high as 33 times stronger due to its effects when it is in the atmosphere. Because of methane’s global warming potential, identifying the sources and “sinks” or storehouses of this greenhouse gas is critical for measuring and understanding its implications across ecosystems. Upland forest soils usually take up and store methane, but this effect can be counteracted by methane emissions from tree trunks, (Click on title for full story.)