The secret language of plants

The evidence is mounting that as a species we are uniquely horrible listeners. But by being self-absorbed, we may be missing a lot of what’s going on around us including—it seems—plant chatter. Susan Dudley, an evolutionary ecologist from Ontario’s McMaster University has been studying the unique behaviour of flora for nearly three decades, but even … Continued

The far flung origins of 8 common houseplants

Houseplants are a vital part of our indoor environments. Commonly overlooked, and all too often killed by neglect, vacations, and marauding housecats, indoor plants provide valuable services by absorbing toxins, improving indoor air quality, and soothing the forest-loving inner primate in all of us. Let’s take a look at the far-flung origins of 8 common … Continued

7 of the strangest plants found among the fishes

We often think of dry land as the domain of plants, which inhabit nearly every terrestrial part of the globe, including habitats as diverse as tropical rainforests, northern tundra and scorching deserts. Less well known, however, are the plants that colonised the ocean sometime after the evolution of land plants 450 million years ago. Unlike … Continued

Ever pondered on what the planet's priciest plants might be?

As well as being an essential source of food, oxygen and medicine, plants provide habitats for all kinds of animals, help to regulate our climate and assist the water cycle. There’s no doubt that we need these incredible organisms to survive. However, in the eyes of humans, certain plants are more important than others, and … Continued

An insightful probe into the planet's 10 most incredible plants

Plants might just surprise you. If you’re like most people, you find it easy to think of impressive animals—tigers, elephants, maybe something obscure like giant squid—but what about incredible plants? Sure they can’t run and they’re not cute and cuddly, but being literally rooted to a single spot they have had to evolve some remarkable … Continued

Over 20 per cent of the planet's plants are in peril, and without our greens we're dead meat…

In the first ever study of its kind, a report compiled by an 80-strong gang of green-fingered scientists from the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew in London has discovered that we share our planet with 391,000 species of plants, many of which humans are directly or indirectly dependent upon for survival. However, the researchers also … Continued

Plants in space, what an oddity!

As we venture further into space, and for longer periods of time, the question of how to feed astronauts is becoming more and more important. Astronauts require 5kg of food and water each day, supplies which are currently sent from Earth. But this would be too expensive and unfeasible on long-term missions to Mars for … Continued

Gardeners of the forest

Have you ever seen anyone digging with their gardening shovel in the forest or a preparing a seedling germination tray in the woods? Who then plants the teeming and endless variety of vegetation? Forests have their own expert gardeners who carry and spread seeds far and wide, keeping it alive and growing. In fact, 95 … Continued

The world's tallest flower is also the stinkiest

Taking around 10 years to blossom, the corpse flower has earned a very stinky reputation. The stench helps attract insects, who will carry and spread the plant’s pollen.

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