2016 “How Plants Work” News Highlights – September

From Plant Secrets To Plant Antibiotics What were the five most re-tweeted and favorited plant news stories that I shared in September of last year? Well, here they are, in order of popularity, lowest to highest. “Scientists from the John Innes Centre have pioneered innovative new cell imaging techniques to …

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Spray and Pray? – Will Spraying RNA on Plants Revolutionize Agriculture?

Spraying RNAi To Silence Target Genes In Crops (And Insect Pests)… Many object to GMO crop plants, at least in part, because they contain foreign genes artificially – and permanently – inserted into the plant’s genome. But what if you could TEMPORARILY modifY plants (and even their insect pests) by …

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“Extremophytes” – Plants With Weird and Fascinating Properties

Plant “Extremophiles”? Recently, I was reading about a new species of metal-eating plant discovered in the Philippines, and I discovered a new word (to me, at least). This new word is “extremophyte“. Simply put, most extremophytes are plants evolutionarily adapted to thrive in highly stressful environments. Physically stressful, that is, …

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A Plant Sexual Thermostat? – New Information About Temperature Controlled Flowering

Hothouse Flowers Unlike animals, plants are not born with their “naughty bits”. That is, the sexual organs of plants, a.k.a., flowers, are typically formed after a period of so-called vegetative growth. In other words, plants first go through a vegetative stage of development (think shoots and leaves, over and over …

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