This technology allows plants to communicate with farmers. Scientists at the Swiss deep tech company Vivent have created technology that allows us to know exactly what our plants need.
Before this, farmers have relied on secondary indicators for finding problems with their crops, looking, for example, for signs of drought by checking out their roots. Scientists Taught Spinach to Send Emails About Hazmat in the Soil. While it’s unlikely that your email inbox would contain a message sent by spinach, it’s not impossible.
In late 2016, engineers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) published a study [PDF] in the journal Nature Materials detailing how they taught spinach plants to transmit automatic emails. The news recently re-circulated, due in part to an updated article from Euronews, and social media users wasted no time in churning out all their best spinach-related jokes.
Comical though it seems, the study wasn’t just done for fun. Basically, the researchers implanted spinach plants with carbon nanotubes that emitted a fluorescent signal when they sensed nitroaromatic compounds—a common component in explosives—in the soil. Food for thought? French bean plants show signs of intent, say scientists. They’ve provided us with companionship and purpose during the darkest days of lockdown, not to mention brightening our Instagram feeds.
But the potted cacti, yucca, and swiss cheese plants we’ve welcomed into our homes are entirely passive houseguests. Aren’t they? Research suggests that at least one type of plant – the french bean – may be more sentient than we give it credit for: namely, it may possess intent. Crown Shyness - When Trees Avoid Touching Each Other. Crown shyness or canopy disengagement is a mysterious natural phenomenon in which the crowns of some tree species do not touch each other, but are separated by a gap clearly visible from ground level.
The effect usually occurs between trees of the same species, but has also been observed between trees of different species. Australian stinging tree reveals entirely new family of neurotoxins. New research from the University of Queensland has solved the mystery behind the sting of one of the most venomous plants on the planet.
The discovery of a previously unknown neurotoxin explains how Australian stinging trees cause excruciating pain that can last for extraordinarily long periods. Australia is well-known for its broad assortment of venomous animals. From spiders and snakes, to scorpions and jellyfish, the country is so infamous for dangerous wild-life the notion "everything in Australia wants to kill you" has become an amusing meme.
30 Types Of Succulents That Look Like Something Out Of This World. How Venus flytraps evolved their taste for meat. How does a plant develop a taste for flesh?
In the play Little Shop of Horrors, all it takes is a drop of human blood. But in real life, it takes much more. Now, a study of three closely related carnivorous plants suggests dextrous genetic shuffling helped them evolve the ability to catch and digest protein-rich meals. Carnivorous plants have developed many devious ways to snare prey. How to Harvest and Use Nature's Aspirin. Editor’s Note: This is a guest post from wilderness survival expert and instructor Creek Stewart.
When I was a boy, my grandfather in Kentucky taught me how to harvest my own natural pain medicine. It all started with a headache and a long walk down the hill in front of his house to the edge of a pond where a large, showy white willow (Salix alba) grew. Using his pocketknife, he carved away a few slivers of smooth bark from one of the new growth branches. Arborists Have Cloned Ancient Redwoods From Their Massive Stumps. A team of arborists has successfully cloned and grown saplings from the stumps of some of the world’s oldest and largest coast redwoods, some of which were 3,000 years old and measured 35 feet in diameter when they were cut down in the 19th and 20th centuries.
Earlier this month, 75 of the cloned saplings were planted at the Presidio national park in San Francisco. The initiative is run by the Archangel Ancient Tree Archive, a nonprofit working to reestablish ancient redwood forests to help combat climate change. Coastal redwoods, which can grow an average 10 feet per year, sequester 250 tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere over their lives, compared to 1 ton for an average tree. “We’re excited to set the standard for environmental recovery,” David Milarch, a fourth-generation arborist and co-founder of the Archangel Ancient Tree Archive, said in a statement.
“These saplings have extraordinary potential to purify our air, water, and soil for generations to come,” Milarch said. Flowers originated 50 million years earlier than previously thought. Orchids – Quartz Obsession. Pathologists Ponder Preserving Evidence after Bioterror Attack. If the networks ever roll out CSI: Topeka, there may be an episode devoted to a dying cornfield, stricken by a deadly microbe.
Hard-nosed plant pathologists would be called on the scene to determine if this was a case of sabotage. Researchers in plant pathology usually worry about naturally occurring pathogens, but they are starting to consider how to collect forensic evidence in the event of a possible bioterrorist attack. "What we normally do is stop the disease as fast as possible," said Jacqueline Fletcher, a plant pathology professor from Oklahoma State University. Sciencemag. We have land plants to thank for the oxygen we breathe.
And now we have a better idea of when they took to land in the first place. While the oldest known fossils of land plants are 420 million years old, researchers have now determined that pond scum first made landfall almost 100 million years earlier. “[This] study has important global implications, because we know early plants cooled the climate and increased the oxygen level in the Earth’s atmosphere,” conditions that supported the expansion of terrestrial animal life, says Tim Lenton, an earth system scientist at the University of Exeter, United Kingdom who was not involved with the work. For decades biologists have been trying to come up with a reliable birth date for land plants. Aeon. At first glance, the Cornish mallow (Lavatera cretica) is little more than an unprepossessing weed.
It has pinkish flowers and broad, flat leaves that track sunlight throughout the day. However, it’s what the mallow does at night that has propelled this humble plant into the scientific spotlight. Hours before the dawn, it springs into action, turning its leaves to face the anticipated direction of the sunrise. The mallow seems to remember where and when the Sun has come up on previous days, and acts to make sure it can gather as much light energy as possible each morning. When scientists try to confuse mallows in their laboratories by swapping the location of the light source, the plants simply learn the new orientation. OIPC BMP Hogweed. Atlasobscura. Confronting the environmental cost of marijuana. When thinking about agriculture’s environmental footprint, the usual suspects jump to mind: corn and cotton and soy, vast resource-intensive commodity crops.
Marijuana isn’t high on the list. Yet perhaps it should be. “Despite its small current land-use footprint,” write the authors of a pot farming study published in Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, “if changes are not made in the spatial pattern of its expansion, the boom in cannabis agriculture will likely create substantial threats to the surrounding environment.” Led by environmental scientist Ian Wang of the University of California, Berkeley, the researchers used satellite imagery to compare marijuana farms and timber harvests in California’s Humboldt County between 2000 and 2013. Humbold County is part of Northern California’s so-called Emerald Triangle, the largest pot-producing region in the United States.
Scientists Find Tequila Plants Hold the Key to Surviving Global Warming. What tastes great in a margarita, can be either smoky or smooth, and may hold the key to how plants of the future will survive global warming? You might not have known the last one, but the first two give it away, right? It’s Agave. We’re talking about agave. That’s right. Intact mushroom and mycophagous rove beetle in Burmese amber leak early evolution of mushrooms – HeritageDaily. New research investigating the transition of the Sahara from a lush, green landscape 10,000 years ago to the arid conditions found today, suggests that humans may have played an active role in its desertification. The desertification of the Sahara has long been a target for scientists trying to understand climate and ecological tipping points. A new paper published in Frontiers in Earth Science by archeologist Dr. David Wright, from Seoul National University, challenges the conclusions of most studies done to date that point to changes in the Earth’s orbit or natural changes in vegetation as the major driving forces.
“In East Asia there are long established theories of how Neolithic populations changed the landscape so profoundly that monsoons stopped penetrating so far inland”, explains Wright, also noting in his paper that evidence of human-driven ecological and climatic change has been documented in Europe, North America and New Zealand. Earth - Real-life zombies that are stranger than fiction. The Way Cashews Grow Is Mildly Shocking If You've Never Seen It Before. Ophiocordyceps unilateralis - Wikipedia. Remembering Plants – The Brains Blog. Perceiving Plants – The Brains Blog. 15 of the World’s Funkiest Fungi. Mushrooms May Really Be Magic After All. History, Travel, Arts, Science, People, Places. Foraging for Edible Plants: Purslane GF Video - GardenFork.TV - DIY Living. Purslane - Weed It or Eat It? - The Homeowners Column - University of Illinois Extension serving Champaign, Ford, Iroquois and Vermilion Counties.
Pitcher plant in France eats bee-killing Asian hornets. Smells Fishy: Putrid 'Corpse Flower' Blooms. Golden State Joe: California Makes A Play For Coffee's Future. Michael Pollan: How Smart Are Plants? In 1973, a book claiming that plants were sentient beings that feel emotions, prefer classical music to rock and roll, and can respond to the unspoken thoughts of humans hundreds of miles away landed on the New York Times best-seller list for nonfiction.
African dust once fertilized the Everglades. Sheep-Eating Plant Blooms For First Time; Puya Chilensis Started Growing 15 Years Ago (PHOTOS) How We Unwittingly Bred The Phytonutrients Out Of Our Food. How Plants Help Each Other Grow By Near-Telepathic Communication. Studying Seemingly Immortal Lichens, in a Place for the Dead.