Researchers decipher how plants steer the development of their embryos using hormones.
In a perspective published in the July 20 issue of Science, a team of University of Tennessee faculty and a student from two unrelated disciplines -- plant sciences and architectural design -- explore the future of houseplants as aesthetically pleasing and functional sirens of home health. Their idea is to genetically engineer house plants to serve as subtle alarms that something is amiss in our home and office environments.
A compound that binds to and inhibits a crucial receptor protein offers a new route for controlling a parasitic plant.
The historic peace treaty in Colombia which brought an end to half a century of violence has led to mass deforestation. Once FARC soldiers were disarmed, it led to a vacuum of power which is being exploited by large landowners who are now deforesting the area at an alarming rate to make way for farms and for the illegal growth of coca crops. An ecologically significant region of Colombia, is now at risk of disappearing.
The Earth is filled with diverse and remarkable plant forms from the tallest redwoods that pierce forest canopies, to the smallest mosses that blanket the ground underfoot.
Forget vegetables with dull colors and fuzzy skin or fruits that lack of flavor -- the produce aisle of the future could offer plant products that are designed for creative cooks and fussy eaters. In a review article published July 19 in Trends in Plant Science, two food researchers describe how new breeding technologies have the potential to enhance the shape, size, color, and health benefits of produce, as well as to inform conventional breeding programs.
One of the essential nutrients for vigorous crop production is nitrogen. Yet most routine tests done in commercial soil testing labs do not measure available nitrogen in the soil. Soil scientists at The Ohio State University and Cornell University think they have found a solution.
Deer, bears, gibbons, but especially elephants, play an important role in seed dispersal for a large-fruited tree in the forests of Thailand, according to a new study publishing July 18 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Kim McConkey of the National Institute of Advanced Studies in Bangalore and colleagues from BIOTEC, Thailand. The data illustrate the complexity of forest ecology and hint that, at least for this one species, changes have occurred that have diminished its overall reproductive success.
The research shows that a freshwater production strain of microalgae, Auxenochlorella protothecoides, is capable of directly degrading and utilizing non-food plant substrates, such as switchgrass, for improved cell growth and lipid productivity, useful for boosting the algae's potential value as a biofuel.
Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology, Germany, have shown for the first time that free-living, sap-sucking bugs can manipulate the metabolism of their host plants to create stable, nutritious feeding sites.