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An image of a pale, dead tree taken from the ground, so that the tree limbs stretch up into the sky.
Certain Tree Species Are More Susceptible to Death by Lightning
Expected increases in lightning strikes due to climate change could alter the botanical composition of tropical forests.
Certain Tree Species Are More Susceptible to Death by Lightning
Certain Tree Species Are More Susceptible to Death by Lightning

Expected increases in lightning strikes due to climate change could alter the botanical composition of tropical forests.

Expected increases in lightning strikes due to climate change could alter the botanical composition of tropical forests.

plant biology
crossword puzzle
Ten Minute Sabbatical
Emily Cox and Henry Rathvon | Dec 1, 2022 | 2 min read
Take a break from the bench to puzzle and peruse
A lobed leaf next to a rounded leaf, both from the same Boquila trifoliolata vine
Can Plants See? In the Wake of a Controversial Study, the Answer’s Still Unclear
Christie Wilcox, PhD | Nov 30, 2022 | 10+ min read
A tiny pilot study found that so-called chameleon vines mimicked plastic leaves, but experts say poor study design and conflicts of interest undermine the report.
Quick and Reliable Plant DNA Extraction
Quick and Reliable Plant DNA Extraction
MilliporeSigma | 1 min read
An innovative, environmentally-friendly spin kit maximizes DNA isolation.
bright green plant cells in long diagonal rows
Plant Biologist Jane Silverthorne Dies at 69
Katherine Irving | Nov 8, 2022 | 2 min read
Silverthorne shaped the development of many NSF programs driving innovation in plant biology and agriculture. 
Rows of soybean plants with green leaves beneath a partially clouded sky with the rising sun in the background.
As Carbon Dioxide Goes Up, Plants’ Nutrient Content Declines
Dan Robitzski | Nov 3, 2022 | 5 min read
Abundant environmental CO2 can increase plant biomass and photosynthesis, but it has downsides for agriculture and ecosystems, a growing body of research finds.
38631-ts-labtools-genetic-and-epigenetic-landscapes-webinar-banner-jp800x560
Investigating Genetic and Epigenetic Landscapes with Long-Read Sequencing
The Scientist Creative Services Team in collaboration with Oxford Nanopore | 1 min read
Matthew Naish will discuss what he learned about Arabidopsis thaliana centromeres from long-read sequencing experiments.
A mesquite tree in an arid environment
Climate Change May Favor Nitrogen-Fixing Plants
Andy Carstens | Oct 17, 2022 | 2 min read
Aridity appears to configure landscapes with a greater diversity of plant species that rely on symbiotic bacteria for nitrogen.
pollen tubes releasing sperm into ovule
Science Snapshot: Go Forth and Multiply
Lisa Winter | Oct 6, 2022 | 1 min read
An honorable mention in the 2022 Nikon Small World in Motion competition shows thale cress sperm being released into the ovule.
Ferns bounced back much faster than other plants after the meteor impact that wiped out the dinosaurs.
Why Did Ferns Persist When All Other Plants Perished?
Amanda Heidt | Aug 15, 2022 | 6 min read
A strange layer in the fossil record contains evidence that fern populations exploded following the mass extinction that ended the Cretaceous period. Scientists want to know why.
A gametophyte of the brown alga <em>Desmarestia dudresnayi</em> that has both male and female reproductive structures
Meet the Algae That Went from Male/Female to Hermaphroditic
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Aug 1, 2022 | 2 min read
A study suggests that several species of brown algae may have independently evolved to express both sexes simultaneously, and it’s likely that female algae evolved male traits—not the other way around.
Two researchers hold up giant waterlily
Science Snapshot: Holily Molily
Lisa Winter | Jul 21, 2022 | 1 min read
The largest waterlily species in the world was incorrectly classified for more than 170 years.
dense evergreen forest with mountains in distance
Climate Change Likely to Slow Plant Growth in Northern Hemisphere
Margaret Osborne | Jun 14, 2022 | 2 min read
While the higher temperatures and CO2 levels associated with climate change currently fuel plant productivity, a study finds that changing conditions could take a toll on photosynthesis rates in regions outside the Arctic within a decade.
A young arctic fox on green grass
Arctic Greening Won’t Save the Climate—Here’s Why
Donatella Zona, The Conversation | Mar 30, 2022 | 4 min read
The growing season on the tundra is starting earlier as the planet warms, but the plants aren’t sequestering more carbon, a new study finds.
Natural sunbeams underwater through water surface in the Mediterranean sea on a seabed with neptune grass, Catalonia, Roses, Costa Brava, Spain
Marine Plant Partners with Microbes Like Terrestrial Plants Do
Rachael Moeller Gorman | Mar 14, 2022 | 3 min read
A seagrass relies on symbiotic bacteria inside its roots to fix nitrogen. This is the first time scientists have demonstrated that this relationship occurs in a marine plant.
Infographic showing how a new bacteria species called <em>Candidatus Celerinatantimonas neptuna</em> lives in seagrass and how it provides the plant with nitrogen
Infographic: Nitrogen-Fixing Bacteria Live Inside Seagrass Roots
Rachael Moeller Gorman | Mar 14, 2022 | 1 min read
Researchers can now explain how some marine plants obtain their nitrogen.
outside view of flooded research greenhouses
Flooding and Storms Wreak Havoc for Australian Scientists
Bianca Nogrady | Mar 4, 2022 | 4 min read
Record-breaking rainfall has caused widespread flooding and devastation in Queensland and New South Wales, forcing the closure of some university campuses.
Man in personal protective equipment (glasses, gloves, cap, and coat) watching plants go through a piece of machinery.
Canada Approves World’s First Plant-Based COVID-19 Vaccine
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Feb 25, 2022 | 2 min read
Canada has ordered 76 million doses of Covifenz, the main ingredient of which was manufactured in the leaves of a tobacco relative.
Sunflowers, in visible spectrum on left half (yellow colors) and UV spectrum on right half (purple and white colors).
Sunflowers’ Bee-Attracting Ultraviolet Also Helps Retain Moisture
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Feb 8, 2022 | 5 min read
The dual purposes of the plants’ hidden colors may conflict as the climate warms, authors of a new study suggest.
Single white snowdrop flower
Plants in UK Bloom a Month Earlier Than in 1980s: Study
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Feb 2, 2022 | 2 min read
Scientists warn that climate change–induced early flowering could have negative effects on wildlife, agriculture, and gardening.
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